Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Lesson Learned: Seed Storage

Like most things gardening, I tend to first not believe the so-called "experts" and do it my way. (You could say I'm a bit stubborn.) Then, I realize the "experts" are Experts and actually know what they are talking about. You'd think by now I'd know, but I suppose I still haven't grown out of that rebellious streak from high school!

I've got a few germination failures of seeds from last year that totally should have germinated. One, is my beloved Unwin's Dahlia (I got 2 out of probably 15 seeds I started). Another is my Thai and Red Rubin basils...complete no-shows. Luckily basil is easy to propagate so I'll just have to buy one of each plant to make the 2-3 I want.

It thus appears that keeping your seeds in a basket under your media unit may not be the best idea. And, that germination tests, which could have alerted me to my issues much earlier when I was buying seed, are not a total and complete waste of time.

So, where SHOULD you keep your seeds? They need a cool, DRY place. Basically, the opposite of what they need to germinate. I've heard and read that the refrigerator is a good place to store seeds of most edibles as long as you keep them away from your fruits & veggies (especially ethylene emitters like apples) and add some dry rice or silica packs to keep everything dry.

And, next year I'll do a germination test...

The massive upside is that the carrots I sowed in a pot about a week before I left for vacation have sprouted! Hurray!!! My fall carrots (same seeds) were a complete failure; I blame it on the squirrels digging in the area and my infrequent watering.

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