Repeat after me: "Cool, Dark & Dry"
Siskiyou Seeds shares strategies for storing your seeds to prolong their vigor and germination potential (and some stories of ancient seeds)! A little care and attention will allow you to treat your seed collection as a library.
Whether you are starting a seed collection for the first time or you have seeds left over from seasons past, the key factors for maintaining seed viability are "Cool, Dark and Dry." We can remember this as these conditions are the opposite of what is generally needed to germinate a seed: warm, moist and light!
At Siskiyou Seeds we use an air conditioned space of about 45 degrees fahrenheit and the relative humidity at about 45%. The ideal conditions for seed storage is to have the temperature and humidity add up to less than "100" when combined. We also place silica based desiccants in each of our seed lots.
Without a climate controlled seed room, you too can find a good location to store your seeds! Locate a spot in your home that stays cool, dark and dry throughout the year even in the summer. Think: under the bed, in a pantry, in the basement? If you can not find a suitable location in your home, the freezer can work as well.
1. Place your seed packets in a sealing plastic bag squeeze the air out and seal it!
2. Double bag, remove air and seal again. (This helps prevent moisture from getting in to the seeds) If you would like you can also include a desiccant in the inner bag.
3. IMPORTANT: When opening your bag after removing the seed stash from the freezer let the seed stash rest until the temperature of the seeds warms up and is equal to the temperature of the air. This will reduce the transference of humidity from the air to your seeds.