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Does seed last in the bag over the winter?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by WHIPPLE5.7, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. WHIPPLE5.7

    WHIPPLE5.7 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 958

    I've got seed I didn't use from last year and wondering if its still good.
     
  2. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,116

    What type??
    Often it germinates better, it depends on the type though

    It also helps where it was kept, not frozen is better than frozen
     
  3. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,770

    Storage conditions are important. However I am not sure what conditions are good --and what are detrimental. Except that high humidity and temp are bad. My opinion is that you will lose a couple percent a month in germination percentage from the date tested as shown on the label. A quick test might be helpful. Plant 100 seeds indoors in a coffee cup--count the sprouts. Or put a hundred seeds in a moist paper towel and keep moist for a week. Count the seeds with a quarter inch of new root or more. See link:
    http://seedlab.oregonstate.edu/maintaining-grass-seed-viability-storage
     
  4. CHARLES CUE

    CHARLES CUE LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,087

    I have used seed a year old keep out in the could up where mice cant get and never had a problem always seems to grow. This is all cool season grass it will be fine. you got to remember if you go to the store and buy grass seed it will be last years seed to. i would not be afraid to use in the fall either
    Charles Cue
     
  5. integrityman

    integrityman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,710

    In a garage is just fine. Shouldn't get wet though.
     
  6. DoetschOutdoor

    DoetschOutdoor LawnSite Bronze Member
    from S. IL
    Posts: 1,818

    Man, I had just heard somewhere what the formula was for figuring out how much germination can be expected once seed goes past the date but now I cant remember where...:hammerhead: But I have used seed several times after winter in spring for little touch ups and grass always comes in fine. You should be ok if seed stays dry.
     
  7. turfcobob

    turfcobob LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 878

    I have stored seed in big rubbermaid containers for years and it came up just fine. Totally sealed and stored in my storage barn on shelf. Read an article in Smithsonian Magazine once about some 300 year old grass seed they found in a sealed bottle in a ship wreck and it grew. Who knows. Properly sealed from the elements is the key.
     
  8. Kennedy Landscaping

    Kennedy Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,599

    I stored seed out in my shop over the winter one year and used it on an overseeding job I did this fall and the lawn is still green...it came in really strong. Heck hardware stores keep grass seed in bulk bins here, its inside but still exposed I guess you could call it.
     
  9. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,496

    In a cold garage, where air temps fluctuate, and the seed breathes (yes, even when the bags are tied tightly shut), you can count on losing about 30% germination rate. This info came from my best friend, a former golf course superintendent.
     

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