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How to Save Vegetable Seed Packets for Another Year

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How to Save Vegetable Seed Packets for Another Year

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Overview

Purchasing fresh vegetable seed year after year gets expensive. Fortunately, if you have leftover seed after your spring planting, you may be able to save that seed packet for next year. Most vegetable seeds retain their germination rate for at least one year, and many can be saved for up to 10 years with just a minimal loss in viability. Packaging and storing the seed properly is vital to ensuring that they sprout when you plant them next.

Step 1

Spread the seed out on a paper plate. Use a separate plate for each variety of seed you are plan to save.

Step 2

Set the plates outside in a shaded area on a warm, sunny day with no wind. Leave the plates outdoors to dry for at least six hours.

Step 3

Place the seeds back inside their seed packet after drying. Seal the packet shut with a piece of tape and label it with the year purchased. The purchase year is often noted on the packet but may be difficult to read after long-term storage.

Step 4

Place the sealed seed packet inside a jar and screw the lid on tightly to keep out any moisture. Store the jar in a cool room until you are ready to replant. Alternately, store the jar inside the refrigerator.

Tips and Warnings

  • Pests may attempt to eat your seeds while they are drying. Cover the the plates with a fine piece of mesh if birds or other pests are a problem.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper plate
  • Tape
  • Jar
  • Marker

References

  • Colorado State Extension: Storing Vegetable and Flower Seeds
Keywords: saving seed packets, storing vegetable seeds, seed saving

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including the "Dollar Stretcher." Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.