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Question about seeds....

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Question about seeds....

Post  vickyhope on 10/12/2011, 1:01 pm

I'm looking through all my seeds and they all have a date of expiration, and I am past the expirations dates on lettuce, basil, cilantro, should I bother with these at all or just go out and get new ones and start fresh?



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Re: Question about seeds....

Post  boffer on 10/12/2011, 2:08 pm

Dampen a paper towel; put test seeds on one half; cover with the other half; put on top of the fridge for warmth.

See what type of germination rate you get; then decide. I have found expiration dates to be on the short side. (They sell more seeds that way.)
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Re: Question about seeds....

Post  westie42 on 10/12/2011, 3:16 pm

They don’t just suddenly quit germinating on that date they slowly begin to have a diminished germination rate. Some seeds like parsnips decline very rapidly others like radish and beets can last me 5-7 years. In the row method I just put a few extra seeds in as they get older. Handling that in SFG is a bit more mysterious to me so far but doubling up and thinning later should work as you learn how to judge the longevity of different seeds versus the cost of new ones. All seeds get used past the dates here. But the wet towel trial is certainly worth using. I pre germinate test all seed that I save from my crops.

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Re: Question about seeds....

Post  Unmutual on 10/12/2011, 3:20 pm

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn14125-jesusera-seed-is-the-oldest-to-germinate.html

For those not wanting to click the link, that's a 2000 year old date palm seed they got to germinate. Only 1 out of 3 germinated however. I say only, but that's still pretty impressive. Seed expiration dates take that!

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Re: Question about seeds....

Post  vickyhope on 10/12/2011, 5:18 pm

Well my seeds aren't thousands of years old, so I think I'm pretty good. Thank you all for your advice, I will try that test seed method.



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