5 ways to use seeds left over from last year
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When the question arises of what to do with last year's seeds, most often they just throw them away and buy new bags. However, you can use proven and affordable methods to revive expired seeds.
Soaking in succinic acid
The drug has no harmful effects on plants, animals, beneficial insects and on the human body. Succinic acid strengthens the root system, accelerates the growth and development of the seedling. It is sold in powder or tablet form and is often used to increase seed germination.
Succinic acid helps the absorption of nutrients.
For soaking, an aqueous solution of 0.2% at room temperature is used. Usually left for a day, then be sure to dry the seeds, and now they can be used for sowing.
Soaking in special preparations
Specialty shops for gardeners sell a variety of growth stimulants. For soaking, take a container, put a piece of cloth there, pour out the seeds, cover them. The preparation is diluted in a separate container according to the manufacturer's instructions. Pour in and wait for 2 days. Aloe juice solution (dilute ampoule with water in proportions 1: 1), phytosporin (dilute with water 1: 2) gives a good effect.
Contrast treatment in hot and cold water
Put the seeds in a tight cloth bag, tie tightly with a thread. Pour boiling water into one cup, cold water into the other. First, the seed is immersed in boiling water for 5 seconds, then immersed in a second container for the same amount of time.
Repeat the procedure 5 to 7 times. Dry for further germination.
To increase the chances of success, you can additionally soak in a growth promoter.
Landing with a margin
Expired seeds lose up to 30% germination. It turns out that out of 10 cucumber seeds, 7 pieces have retained the viability, and maybe less.If you plant several pieces per hole, then the chances of getting a crop increase. In the case when several seeds emerge, the plants are simply planted in other places.
Soaking in hydrogen peroxide
Flushing helps the seed to sprout. Most often soaking in a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution is used for seeds with a high content of essential oils (for example, dill, celery and carrots), but it can also be used for other seeds. The procedure is as follows: pour the seeds with hydrogen peroxide (it is inexpensive and is sold in any nearest pharmacy), mix, drain, rinse under running water.
Expired flower seeds for 1-3 rubles per package - is it worth buying? Let's discuss
Usually sane gardeners and gardeners say: “You should not rely on chance and the will of fate. Don't take risks with untested or expired seeds! " This is so ... That's just ... Where is it among the enthusiastic flower lovers can be found "sane"? There are only a few of them in practice.
Quite the opposite. Almost everyone is willing, at the slightest opportunity, to take a chance and sow unreliable seeds. So let's discuss the degree of risk.
And to make our discussion with you more substantive, I bought 15 bags of seeds, their photos will be below in this article. And on all packages there is a note that it was necessary to sell seeds no later than the last and the year before last. Therefore, they were discounted and the seeds cost 1-3 rubles per package.
Shelf life of flower seeds and vegetables
It is generally accepted that each plant has its own seed shelf life. Some flowers need to be sown immediately after harvesting the seeds, others may lie for several years. There are also those in which the seeds can germinate only after changing several periods of cooling.
Usually, even for lawn grass, seed germination decreases by about 10% every year. But please note that even after 10 years of storage, some of the seeds can still germinate calmly.
What determines the shelf life of seeds and germination.
I am sure that now you, dear reader (reader), confidently said that the shelf life and germination depends on ... the storage conditions and characteristics of the plants themselves.
And if you choose the main factor among these two factors, then storage conditions will prove to be the most important. There are several large seed storage facilities in the world, which are located underground and there is a constant low temperature.
That is why I keep all the seeds in the refrigerator - in the fruit and vegetable compartment.
Is the "game" worth the candle?
In fact, I already got a little pleasure, because I got it (just don't laugh :)) opportunity to grow something beautiful and possibly new. No wonder they say that sometimes waiting for a holiday is better than the holiday itself :)).
Well, you could have spent that little money on something else! Sure. But there is no point in assessing the monetary losses, because the markdown is so impressive that such seeds are obtained practically for nothing.
What are we losing? A little time for sowing. I will emphasize this: we only waste time for sowing. Because if then nothing has grown, then nothing else will have to be done: neither look after, nor seat ...
But if everything (or not everything, but at least something) works out - it will be surprisingly pleasant and positive! Because we are so trying to save the discarded seeds.
It turns out that everyone has abandoned them, but they are alive! They will begin to bloom and delight with their flowering.
Nature is on our side.
The last thought in this article is short and straightforward: "Consider that nature is on our side here."
So, I have outlined the topic, please speak up. As for these seeds, I will sow them, and then I will tell you what happened, what I did not manage to grow. Please like to support the topic. Subscribe to my channel and site. I wish you goodness and beauty in all the colors of the world. This and more articles about beautiful flowers on "There is a time in the sun".
Is it possible to plant expired seeds
With the end of winter, most gardeners take out their seed supplies and test them for germination. Some of the stored seed material will certainly be expired, and here the question arises, what to do with such seeds?
Whether it is possible to sow expired seeds is up to the owner to decide. Sometimes in seed stores they are sold at a discount, and it is difficult to resist not to purchase the variety of decorative flowers or vegetables you like. Experienced gardeners know that often old, expired seeds bring such close-knit shoots that seeds just bought with a normal shelf life cannot be compared with them. Depending on the degree of maturity of the seeds when harvesting them, they can very well maintain their germination even after their expiration date.
But most gardeners agree that sowing seeds with an expired shelf life is only worth reviving a certain variety, the seeds of which could not be found in the store.
Expiry date of seeds
In agricultural technology, there are two concepts: the shelf life of seed and seed germination, which are radically different from each other. From the time of packing the seeds to the deadline for sale, there is a certain interval determined by the law. Seed germination implies their biological characteristics, typical for certain crops.
It is forbidden to sell expired seeds in trade structures, so they are discounted and sold for a penny. During this period, even elite seeds can be purchased at fairly low prices, and the temptation is so great that many gardeners buy expired vegetable seeds, and sometimes this gives a good result, because it is known that the seeds of many vegetable crops retain the ability to germinate for a long time. For example, tomatoes and cucumbers (about 6 years old), cabbage, various varieties (4 years old), watermelons and melons (6-7 years old). In addition, cucumbers, according to the experience of gardeners, bear fruit even better if you take older seeds for planting. But carrots, even with a normal shelf life, can give very poor shoots, and this cannot be explained in any way.
In addition, it is believed that the finer the seed, the worse it germinates, even in a favorable environment.
Checking seeds for germination
Having expired seeds, every gardener is in no hurry to part with them, because there is always an opportunity to revive old seeds and test them for germination. In nature, the seeds in the ground are awakened by the warmth of the spring sun and melt moisture from the snow, but vegetable seeds are planted in a greenhouse or greenhouse when it is early spring outside the window, and thaws alternate with frosts. Therefore, the conditions for the germination of seeds are created artificially, and if the seeds are expired, then they can be awakened with the help of compost, or rather aerated compost tea, by soaking in it for a day, then two hours in ordinary vodka and the same amount in hydrogen peroxide (3%). After that, they are alternately immersed in boiling water and cold water (5 times), and the last - for four hours, kept in a growth stimulator.
Another way to plant expired seeds is to first place them on a saucer soaked in filter paper and wait for the seeds to hatch. Then count the number of sprouts and determine the% germination rate, while it is necessary to take into account the germination energy of the seed material, that is, how quickly it rises and further goes into growth.
Other ways to awaken expired seeds
Many experts doubt whether it is possible to sow expired seeds, but summer residents do not cease to amaze with their ingenuity in awakening such seed material. Here are some of the ways, perhaps they will be useful in the future for novice farmers.
An effective way to awaken seeds to growth is to soak in a solution of camphor alcohol (10 drops per 100 g) for a day. This can be done after stratification of the inoculum in the refrigerator. After that, the scarification method is used for large seeds that need help in destroying the hard shell of the seed. You can mix the planting material with sand and grind it with your hands, thereby helping to break down the seed coat a little, or file large seeds with emery. After this procedure, contrast heating of the seeds is especially effective, in which they are first heated and then frozen.
The shoots of expired seeds will be faster if impaction is made, it consists in repeatedly shaking the seed material in a glass jar, sometimes with the addition of river sand.
Expired flower seeds
Avid florists often sin by buying flower seeds for future use, as a result of which the seed remains for the next year. But there is nothing wrong with that if the seeds have a long shelf life. So, the seeds of mallow and daisy, as well as alyssum, can lie for 3-4 years and subsequently grow beautifully, being sown in warm and moist soil. Expired seeds of phlox and delphinium flowers will probably not sprout, since their shelf life is only one year, but if you store these seeds in a hermetically sealed container at a temperature of -15 ° C, then they can sprout in 15 years!
During storage, all seeds of decorative flowers have their ability to germinate gradually, and their germination capacity will decrease from year to year, giving less and less desired seedlings.
Note to flower growers: seeds in ordinary single paper bags retain their germination capacity worse than those packed in double bags or foil. That is why germination largely depends on the storage of seed material. And it doesn't matter if these are expired seeds of tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers or ornamental flowers, if they were stored correctly, and then certain conditions were created for them for germination, then it is highly likely that the seeds will retain their normal germination for a long time.
And yet there are a number of crops whose seeds are not stored for a long time, regardless of storage conditions. It is advisable not to buy such seeds for future use.
Expired ground coffee
The shelf life of packaged and freshly ground coffee is different.
- Ground coffee can be stored in sealed containers for up to 12 months. Even if a shorter period is indicated on the package, but the pack remained unopened and well sealed, then its contents will partially retain their properties for up to a year.
The expiration date indicated by the manufacturer on the packaging with coffee is the time during which this type of product retains its properties and characteristics as much as possible.
- In vacuum packaging, ground coffee briquettes can be stored even longer, up to three years. Sometimes a shorter shelf life is indicated on the pack, for example, 18 or 24 months. During this time, the powder retains the entire intended volume of taste and aroma. Then it gradually loses its properties.
Expired ground coffee in a package that has been less than 3 years old can be used, although the taste and aroma may be much weaker.
- Freshly ground coffee is recommended to be consumed within 2 weeks after production. But you can drink it after a month, if it is packed in foil, and then in an opaque jar with a ground-in lid. With this method of storage, the powder will lose its properties more slowly, and even with the expiration date it is quite capable of giving a cup of tonic drink.
- The critical period for non-tightly packed ground coffee is 1 month. After that, he loses more than 90% of all his properties. You can drink it, you cannot poison it, but in fact, it will be just tinted hot water, perhaps with a slight semblance of a coffee aroma.
Old seeds: simple and effective ways to revitalize planting material
Long-term storage of planting material leads to the fact that it loses its germination, although it is preferable to use the seeds of some crops only for the fourth or fifth year of storage.
It all depends on the plant from which they were collected. Some are desirable to use in the next season, otherwise then they may not germinate at all, while others can be safely stored for about ten years.
However, almost any old seed can be revived if desired.
How to wake up old planting material:
1. Put in a container with low sides, having previously covered the bottom with gauze, cover the top with another piece of gauze.
Take a few fleshy leaves from an old plant - aloe, squeeze the juice over the gauze. The seeds should be well wet in the juice.
Pull cling film over the container, put in a warm place for 3-5 days. Care must be taken so that they do not dry out. As soon as they begin to swell, sprout, they can be planted in the ground.
2. Pour warm water into a glass - about 50 ml, add a spoonful of natural honey, stir thoroughly to dissolve the honey.
Then throw old seeds into a glass, cover with a bag on top so that the water does not evaporate. Check their condition after 5 days. If they are swollen, then you can plant the beds.
3. Apply purchased growth stimulants, root formation.
To begin with, prepare a container with a piece of fabric, lay out the planting material, and also cover it with a cloth on top.
Prepare the product in a separate container, following the instructions on the package.
Pour over the fabric so that there is not a little, and not a lot of moisture. They should not swim in water. After a couple of days, unviable ones can be discarded, and the rest can be germinated further.
4. Put in a tight fabric bag, tie with a thread.
Prepare 2 cups. Pour cold water into one, and boiling water from a kettle into the other.
Dip the bag first in boiling water for 5 seconds, then in cold water for 4-5 seconds. And so do 5-7 times in a row, then dry or soak for further germination, adding a few drops of aloe juice to the water.
5. Shock with alcohol.
You can use regular vodka. To do this, about 30 ml of alcohol is poured into a pile, but it must be warm.
The seeds are lowered into a pile for half an hour, after which they are caught and left under damp gauze for 3-5 days.
Any of these methods can revive old seeds that have been stored in bins for even more than ten years.
Tomato »Is it possible to plant expired seeds
If you ask any summer resident what the crop consists of, then a list of actions will follow, including preparing the garden in the fall, spring loosening, buying seeds, and so on. In fact, the issue of seed is acute, because the market is flooded with counterfeit goods, because of which many are receiving less harvests.
But the point is not so much in fakes as in the desire to save money. If the seeds are expired (or almost expired), they can be displayed at low prices, and sellers do not always inform about the expiration date.
Another risk for the harvest is seeds that do not correspond to the declared varieties, when the packer, who also wants to save money and make a profit, fraudulently, simply packs the cheapest seeds in beautiful bags. As a result, the gardener gets the wrong fruits of tomatoes, carrots, heads of cabbage, which he counted on.
However, if we do not consider the deception of dishonest seed traders, which is sometimes very difficult to disclose to an ordinary buyer, then the most common mistake so offhand is planting expired seeds.
What are expired seeds?
So, seeds with an expired shelf life in stores are always discounts, penny prices, the seller's desire to sell quickly. However, is it so bad to buy such seeds as it might seem, and is it possible to plant expired seeds and still get a high yield?
You will probably be surprised, but in fact, by planting seeds from a package where the date indicates an expiration, it is even possible to grow excellent vegetables. The point is that packaging with its shelf life and germination period are not the same thing. There is always a date on the paper bag, adhering to which sellers can sell their products. This date can be applied in different ways, filled with ink or printed along with other information on the packaging (you can also try to find a catch in this, because they can change the date and make a different impression). But what is the real time of seed germination is not indicated on the package.
In order to know whether expired seeds of tomatoes, pepper, eggplant, celery will sprout or not, you need to have at your disposal only two numbers - the year of collection of seeds and the period during which the ability to germinate from the seed in a particular culture is maintained. At the same time, storage conditions are extremely important, because too low or high temperatures, moisture, dampness, mold are not the best things that can happen to seeds during storage. No less important is what the seeds were stored in, since airtight materials can cause seeds to die, they must breathe.
Therefore, it is another matter when expired seeds are from personal stocks that you yourself once collected and did not sow. You know exactly in what year they were collected, where and in what they were stored, and all that remains is to check the germination capacity. Can you sow seeds? Overdue - yes, but not always.
How to revive seeds
The "old" planting material of plants during simple manipulations can be stimulated to germination, and in some cases even reanimate when, it would seem, all the terms have passed.
One of the methods is soaking in cool degassed water, which is prepared at home, bringing it almost to a boil (more precisely, up to 90 ° C), followed by sharp cooling. The highlight of the process is the use of a lid that is not removed from the vessel during heating and cooling.
Heat treatment also helps to awaken dormant seeds. Revitalization of old seeds is carried out in two vessels, in one of which there is hot water (close to boiling water), in the other - cold. Seed material needs to be poured into a tissue bag, tied with a string and first of all dipped in hot water, where it should be kept for about three minutes, removed and immediately immersed in cold water. Alternate further, making sure that the water in the hot bowl does not cool down. In total, do 5-6 receptions and remove the seeds to dry at room temperature.
It is also possible to arrange a biological awakening in the spring by the method of bubbling, oxygen provokes the development process. At home, you can take an aquarium compressor from available tools, pour expired vegetable seeds into some container, for example, a glass jar with water, turn on the device for a maximum of a day, making sure that the air flows constantly stir the seeds in the water.
Expired seeds are now ready for planting, but they may not always sprout, regardless of the method.
Seeds that have a dense shell (the same carrots, parsley or celery), it is not easy to wake up, especially if they are close to losing germination. The main task is to "reach out" to the seed, removing the barrier in the form of essential oils. Try alcohol-based solutions. As an example, to get seedlings of expired seeds, you can use vodka. For convenience, we put the seeds in cheesecloth, put them in a glass and pour in a little vodka so that the solution covers the seeds. Within 30 minutes, the oils will dissolve and the seeds are ready to plant. But don't forget to rinse them with clean water.
Why not always self-grown seeds can give a good harvest? Growing conditions and more can be an obstacle to obtaining a pure variety. The inattention of the gardener sometimes leads to undesirable consequences, for example, pollinating plants growing in the pollination zone, or seeds removed from hybrid varieties, which for the most part cannot repeat the result of the previous year.
But if everything is in order with the seed material, and you are sure of it, before planting seeds (expired seeds of flowers or vegetables), remember, and better write down in your notebook what germination times the crops have. Pumpkin seeds (watermelon, zucchini, squash, cucumber, melon, pumpkin) have the longest shelf life. These are champions, but, incidentally, there are some among ornamental plants, for example, cellosia and amaranth. Seeds of celery, parsnips and onions (1-2 years) will last the least in the bins. Parsley and carrots, the seeds of which are saturated with oils, sprout in the 3rd, sometimes in the 4th year. Spinach, dill and leeks have the same germination.