How to Soak Seeds in Clorox


Before you plant your seeds, consider processing them in a Clorox solution that helps prevent many bacterial diseases that can damage or kill your crops. Clorox works by cleaning the outside of the seed wall and is commonly used as an alternative to a hot water treatment because there is less of a chance of damaging certain types of seeds. Using this bleaching agent with a few supplies, soak your own seeds in Clorox so that you have the best chance at a successful harvest.

Step 1

Place your seeds in a container. Add 1 tsp. of surfactant and pour in one part Clorox to four parts water (for example, 1 cup Clorox to 4 cups water).

Step 2

Stir the Clorox mixture continuously for 1 minute to allow the treatment to reach every seed. If you have pepper or tomato seeds, you may continue soaking your seeds for up to 40 minutes to further purify them.

Step 3

Pour your seeds in a strainer. Hold the strainer under cold running water to rinse the seeds for 5 minutes.

Step 4

Place your seeds on a screen. Spread the seeds out so that they do not touch each other and allow them to dry.

Things You'll Need

  • Container
  • Clorox (5.25% hypochlorite)
  • Water
  • 1 tsp surfactant
  • Spoon
  • Strainer
  • Screen or paper towel


  • Ohio State University: Hot Water and Chlorine Treatment of Vegetable Seeds to Eradicate Bacterial Plant Pathogens)
  • Heritage Wheat Conservancy: Organic Seed Treatment Notes

Who Can Help

  • Cornell University: Vegetable MD Online
Keywords: soak seeds in Clorox, treat seeds with Clorox, prevent seed disease with Clorox

About this Author

Jenny Glass has been writing professionally since 2001 and is a glass artist with a Web design and technical writing background. In addition to writing for Demand Studios, she has been a contributor to "Glass Line Magazine" and runs her own art glass business.