Seed storage

Discussion in 'Gardening and Agriculture' started by theuksurvivalist, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. theuksurvivalist

    theuksurvivalist Member

    Coming from the UK i thought i would collect seeds relating to the UK and store them for a rainy day. But how do i store them?.
    the uk survivalist
  2. Lake Windsong

    Lake Windsong Well-Known Member


  3. horseman09

    horseman09 Well-Known Member

    Does anyone know if properly dried seeds would emain viable longer by storing them in a sealed container with an O2 absorber? What about a desicant also? I didn't see any mention of them in the above posts.

  4. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    A vaccuum sealer helps keep seeds viable longer, as well as using mylar (foil) bags instead of plastic. Another important thing, once you have them sealed, is to put them inside an airtight container such as a plastic bucket or gallon-sized glass jar. Then store them in a dark, cool place, preferably one with a stable temperature, like a basement, under the house, or in a root cellar. I'm sure the 02 absorber is a good idea too, but I haven't used them.
    For anyone interested, Costco sells preparedness supplies now, packaged for up to 20 years' storage life, on their website only. (Non-members have to pay a small surcharge). I just received the storage seeds kit I ordered from them containing 24 Jumbo-sized non-hybrid seed packets, sealed in foil packets and then all together in a sealed bucket. Here's the link: Costco - Food For Health Emergency Garden Seeds
    Last edited: May 19, 2010
  5. horseman09

    horseman09 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the info, GypsySue.
  6. horseman09

    horseman09 Well-Known Member

    (Nothing like quoting myself and answering my own questions, huh? :congrat:)

    Well, now we know. I opened one of our jugs of store-bought navy beans that we packed in plastic jugs with O2 absorbers almost 2 years ago, and sowed a few rows last week (that seedway seeder really does work). They've sprouted already! Since they are store-bought, they might be hybrids and perhaps won't produce well, but the point is some seeds apparently store well under a near zero oxygen atmosphere for at least 2 years.

    Hmmm. I wonder if corn and other harder to longterm store seeds will do as well?
  7. Emerald

    Emerald Well-Known Member

    I know that tomato, corn, beans and some of the cole crop seeds will store for really long time if done right, but some things like onions and leeks and lettuces will start losing germination rates after about 2 years, and you have to plant them to grow out at least every other year.
    I've also had old squash seeds last well over 10 years in a nice dry, dark container, so I'd bet they would do well packed like your beans were.

    Beans are funny critters, they tend to be quite stable even the hybrids, at least the ones that I have grown in the past. They pollinate themselves mainly before their bloom even opens... But I have switched to all heirloom and open pollinated veggies as they are easier to keep seed from and usually taste much better than hybrids, but in a SHTF world I would grow and eat what ever I could plant.

    One suggestion on seeds, store and save mainly what you enjoy eating and those that are good nutrition like the corn, beans, tomatoes and squash... sure I like my fancy veggies like lettuces and such, but if I had to survive on my garden I think some of the less nutritious stuff might not get as much room!

    Another seed that people overlook is true potato seed- you know when the potato plants make the tiny little green/purple looking baby tomato things on the top- those seeds while not really breeding true (you might get bigger or smaller or even a bit different than what you started with)will still be potatoes and you could always grow out more each year.
  8. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    IMO why store lettuce seed (long-term) when there are so many tasty wild greens all over the place!
  9. survivalseed

    survivalseed Member

    New survival seed bank for survival gardening, lets you grow a permanent, full acre crisis garden with non-hybrid survival seeds.
  10. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    I just looked and Costco doesn't seem to still have the garden seed kit we bought back in the spring. The one that had several varieties of open-pollinated heirloom seeds, packed for long-term storage. I clicked on the link and now some grapeseed vitamin stuff comes up on the link. I searched all over their site and couldn't find the garden seeds. I can't go back and change my post from before, with the link on it.
  11. HozayBuck

    HozayBuck Well-Known Member

    Two tidbits of seed storing info

    When King Tut's digs were opened they found wheat and honey.. they planted some of the wheat and it grew just like it was this years seeds..5000 years old??? The honey was of course crystallized but I heard they heated it like always and it reverted back to it's former self...

    In China about 15 or 20 years ago they found a tomb that they dated as over 8000 years old... in it was some tiny black seeds almost petrified , nobody could figure out what they were until somebody said ... see if they will sprout... they did.. and were planted.. Tomatoes... and I thought the EYE-talions invented tommy-toes.. goes ta show ya...

    I will not swear on my blood about these things, just something I read years ago..

  12. dunappy

    dunappy Well-Known Member

    My personal opinion is that you don't store seeds for a "rainy Day". Instead you store this years seeds to plant next year. Grow your food and store new seed for the next year. I've been storing Pea seeds every year of the past 5 years. In the spring I plant my seeds, harvest my peas and store the next years seed.
  13. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    And I agree. That's the best way to always have seed. However, a single bad growing season could really present a problem. What do you do, eat or save? This year was tough on corn for us. What the heat and drought didn't get, the deer did. We got very little of it.
    Luckily, 2009 was a great year. We had plenty to eat fresh, freeze and save about 10# for seed for a "rainy day". That will become next years planting.
    Lost our beet seed this past summer, not to the weather but to the goats.

    I always like having a couple years worth of seeds as a back-up.
  14. 41south

    41south Well-Known Member

    I save my seeds in 30 cal ammo cans, it takes six of them to hold the seeds that I save, this gives me storage for two years planting, and with them in saved in different cans, gives me peace of mind, in case some do get infested, I will still have others to use from.

    I put corn seeds in cans with corn only, it has been my experience, that corn is the root of all evil when it comes to infestations from moths. I also put a few moth balls in the ones with corn in them. I have a year long experiment running now with only cedar chips in two of my seed cans.

    I saved seeds in paper bags in a big nylon bag for 10 years, with no problems, but two years ago moths got started in the corn seeds, nightmare to get rid of them, that was when I went to ammo can storage.
  15. feathers

    feathers New Member

    Surprised to see winter squashes missing, something like a triamble pumpkin can last 2 years in storage of picked and stored correctly in a dry cool place. Zucchini would be another good one to grow, possibly the worlds most productive plant :)
  16. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    UncleJoe, I have some good heirloom beet seed if you want me to mail you some. I have a goat I could mail you, too, if you need more of them! lol Our son is house-sitting for us right now, and he says the goat stands out there banging it's head against the board over the goathouse door, over and over, during the night!

    I used to store my seed in coffee cans in the barn, back when I didn't have much respect for my garden, but now that it's our primary food source, we vacuum seal it first. I've had a lot of old seed given to me by friends and neighbors who know I like to play around with planting it.