Does Grass Seed Go Bad??

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DMAN, Oct 28, 2002.

  1. DMAN

    DMAN LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    I was wondering if extra grass seed I don't use this fall will go "bad" if it is stored in my(dry) barn over the winter due to cold temps. I think some went bad a couple of years ago when I stored it in a dry cold place during the winter. I used the old seed the following spring and had no germination ,compared with new seed i bought that spring. I currently have about 100 lbs left over and i wanted to if i just wasted my money?? Thanks for the replies!!

  2. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,516

    I had seed leftover from last year and when going to reuse it this year, I think I was told to expect less germination from the old seed..
    Someone made a post about this, but I can't find it right now.

    I also think that if it is stored in a cold barn, with freezing temps, there would be even less germination of the seed.
    Lets see what some others think.
  3. greenngrow

    greenngrow LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 403

    Normally grass seed will loose some germinaton if not stored in the proper enviroment.

    The seed guys tell me that you need to store your seed in a cool 55 degree consisant temp with very low humidity. If you just have it in stored out in a building the varying temps and humidity can cause some reduction. Not to were it will kill the germination of the seed. I always have seed left over. I just mix the old with the new and go with it.

    You should have any problems just remember humidity is the key. And just mix some new with the old next time you sow seed.
  4. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    Seed sould have a test date on it. Seed left over in distribution system from this year legally should be retested and relabeled for next year.

    If you purchase seed harvested and packaged earlier this year, and have some left over, you will usually find you get even better germination the second year. But germination rate rapidly drops off after that. If the seed you purchased this year is retested seed harvested in 2001, you might not get very good germination next year.

    Winter storage should be as in post directly above. Stored seed will rot from too much moisture. Biggest problem in barn or shed storage is mice; they eat the actual seed and leave the hulls, so you think you still have real seed.

    I store leftover seed in the basement, on the floor. This is cool and dry, and (knock on wood) no mice in basement.
  5. The Mowerdude

    The Mowerdude LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 372

    Yup, one things for sure. If you have mice or rats, you won't have to worry about germination rates. There won't be enough left to germinate. Grass seed is like an all-night, all-you-can-eat buffet. And they will consider it a personal challenge to see how quickly they can dispose of it too.
  6. Tony Harrell

    Tony Harrell LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 739

    Found out that I have mice in my garage when I looked at half a bag of transition. There should be a terrible smell in there by tomorrow or wed by the latest. I hung the seed by a hook and baited the entire garage with enough rodent bait to choke a horse.
  7. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    LOL, mice here wouldn't care if it was levitated. My 8' flourescent over workbench went out few years ago. Took it down and disassembled it. mice had nested in it, and had used the fabric cord insulation (old light) for their nest. They had to come down the cord or one of the chains from the rafters, or jumped up to the fixture.

    Forget any structure even slightly unsecured to rodents for your seed storage.

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