Proper storage of your seeds is critical to ensure their quality thus allowing for higher yields.

Quality seed companies do lots of testing and are particular with how they handle their seeds, but if you do not store them correctly the seeds will have poor germination.  

The keys to properly storing seeds are:

  1. Cool temperatures
  2. Low humidity/moisture
  3. Dim (or no) light

Here are some tips for seed storage:

  • Successful seed storage starts with having good quality seed; it isn’t worth saving/storing seeds if they aren’t viable or are poor quality.  
    • Not sure if your seeds are good? - Test your seeds using the Paper Towel Test (see video).
      • The more seeds that sprout the higher the germination rate!
  • I like to write (using a permanent marker) the year I purchased each seed on the outside of the packet.  The older the seed the less likely they will germinate, so having that documented is important.  Personally, I prefer to use seeds that are two years old or younger.
  • Containers for storage 
    • I generally keep my seeds in the bag/container they come in.  
    • If I notice a hole in the envelope I like to use mason jars or recycled glass jars.  You can also use food storage bags or buy containers specifically for storing seeds.  
  • I keep my seeds in an uninsulated area in my basement. The key is to keep them cool. 
    • Some people will store seeds in their refrigerator (make sure they aren’t too close to the freezer), but I don’t have enough room for all of them!
  • Organize your seeds
    • I have a large amount of seeds and keep them in portable hanging file folder boxes.  
    • I label each file by seed type (tomato, lettuce, herbs, etc), so I can easily find the seeds I need.  
    • Figure out whatever system works for you, but keeping seeds organized is so nice when you're ready to plant!

An example of how I store my seeds using a file box and file folders

I hope you find this information valuable and, keep in mind, each day spring is getting closer!

Your Urban FarmHer,