How long do Seeds last in Packets? (Are they still good?)

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How long do Seeds last in Packets? Do they remain good? That time of year has come when you need to take out the seed packets from a long-time closed almirah shelf in the store. But are these seeds worthy to be sown or planted? As we know seeds do expire and that depends on the time, and conditions where the seeds are kept or stored.

Some seeds have more shelf life than others. So it is good to check whether the seed is still viable or not. Wasting time on a seed that is not going to grow is just useless. Why not use that time on the seeds where you get the results getting good results is what I mean.

How long do Seeds last in Packets? (Are they still good?)

The main reason that the seeds get spoiled is due to getting exposed to humidity and temperature fluctuations happening around. The warm and humid conditions can affect some seeds so quickly. The seeds need to be dry, cold, and dark, to sustain for years moisture is the worst factor for the seeds. The aging of seeds also does happen and that also makes seeds lose their vigor. For example:

  • Onion, lettuce, parsley- 1 YEAR
  • Corn, peppers- 2 YEARS
  • Broccoli, carrots, asparagus, celery, peas, spinach- 3 YEARS
  • Sprouts, cabbage, kale, eggplants, pumpkins- 4 YEARS
  • Cucumber- 5 YEARS
  • Arugula, Endive – 6 YEARS 

Container– The airtight container helps the seeds to be safe and not let them come in contact with such ‘bad conditions for seed’. You can use a glass jar, and well-sealed bags to store seeds.

“A tree without roots will wither away – A man without integrity cannot last long.”

How long do flower seeds last in packets?

The flower seeds, if kept in a good condition that is dry and not as much light which I think is best to store the seeds, then they can be kept viable for 1-2 years. The type of plant is also considered for how long the seeds will be viable.

How long do packaged vegetable seeds last?

The vegetable seeds can outstand the date of expiration if stored in a cool dry place that is dark. The baker seeds are one of those seeds that can stay viable for two to three years after getting them from stores.

Many seeds expire after 3-5 years but that again depends on the variety of the vegetable seed. You can also look at the information given on the seed packet for expiration time or date.

Are they stored seeds still good to plant?

If the time is still there from the expiration date of stored seeds, yes you can plant them, but make sure to check the seeds properly before sowing as the humidity or warm condition might have damaged them. Some vegetable seeds stay viable for a short time whereas some stay for a long time.

How to check the seed’s viability?

The seeds that are stored for a long time can be checked for whether they germinate or not by simply taking some seeds before planting and placing those seeds on a wet sheet not drenching but moist. Cove the seeds with a plastic cover and get sunlight. Keep them like that for 5-7 days, if seeds sprout they should be planted.

Some seeds need a low temperature to pop up and bring out the seedlings. You can freeze them or put them into the refrigerator to provide a temperature of about 55 to 65 degrees. The low-temperature loving seeds include cucumber, squash, etc.

The seeds love high temperatures to get into the mood to germinate, including that peppers, tomatoes, etc. You can provide a temperature of 50-70 degrees F by using heating mats placed under the trays holding the seeds.

How do seeds last longer in storage?

  • By using a freezer, you can attain a condition that seeds require, like a dry and cold one but the dry condition can only happen in the chest freezer that is not used frequently and stays closed for a long time, doing its work.
  • You can use an air-tight dry container like a glass jar with a tight lid to store the seeds properly and efficiently. Avoid using plastic bags.
  • Paper bags can be used to keep the seeds safe and dry. But the rodents can easily munch on these seeds, make sure the place is closed and keep checking the bag if it is not damaged.

How long do seeds last in the freezer?

Seeds, if frozen and stored well, get an extended lifespan which is why most stores keep them in the freezer for storing.

  • Though some seeds cannot be frozen like recalcitrant seeds.
  • To keep the seed cool, store them under 50 degrees keeping them viable and sufficient for germination.
  • Use a jar and put the seeds inside and then into the refrigerator cabin.
  • The seeds will stay useful for one to two years and depending on the plant type they can stay viable for five years as well.

Final words of the context 

Storing seeds is a great habit for gardeners. Trust me! Choosing a quality variety and then collecting their seeds after the growing season, and storing them further, make gardening so much easier and more effective. We have entered most of the vital information that you should be knowing about seed storage, their expiry, and the test to know whether seeds are viable to sow or not. We hope you find this article useful and informative.

Happy seed storing! 


1. How long do seeds last in packets after opening?

The vegetable seeds are viable for two to three years and some vegetable seeds like onions, corn, etc. get aged and spoiled after a year. So when you open the seeds packet do check the expiration date and plant accordingly. 

2. Will expired seed packets still grow? 

The answer is why not! Yes, you can plant the expired seeds, if they don’t germinate that is another situation, but in some cases, the old seeds if kept properly under suitable conditions can germinate. If the expired seeds germinate that again would be a plus for you. 

Becky Decker

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