Thursday, February 21, 2013

Using last year's seeds in the garden


If you are wondering whether or not to use last year's seeds -- or some even older -- there is no reason to waste time planting them in the garden only to realize a couple weeks later that they are not going to germinate. You can check out their viability now!

I happen to have a very large bag of pea seeds that I've had for a few years. They don't have a date on them, and I don't remember exactly when I bought them, so I poured a handful into a canning jar and soaked them for a few hours, then drained off the water. I rinsed them several times a day to keep them moist, and within two or three days, I started to see sprouts!

After about five days, I poured the peas out onto a plate and started sorting through the ones that had sprouted and the one that hadn't. Since the germination rate looks like it is still very close to 100%, I'll be planting the seeds in my garden again this year!

And what will I do with the seeds that I sprouted? I'm going to continue rinsing them for a few more days and then feed the pea sprouts to my pigs as a treat!

3 comments:

  1. Can't comment through Facebook but.....you can't plant already sprouted seeds?

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    Replies
    1. I've never tried, but it's a little early to plant here anyway. We're in the midst of a slush storm as I'm typing! (Snow is falling, but it's 34 degrees, so it's very slushy.)

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  2. You can plant them but you have to be really careful not to snap off the little roots. They are fragile as all get out and they don't grow back.

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