Guess what? I found a cool use for all those baby food jars I saved just in case. SEE? I knew I would end up using them somehow. Yeah, I know, that’s probably what the hoarders say about everything they have. But I honestly did put these to good use.
I read somewhere a while back that you should keep seeds in a cool, dry location for best storage, especially if you plan to use them for more than one season. Some people have even mentioned refrigeration of their seeds. I don’t think that that is necessary for me, at my level of gardening, but I did wonder about all those seed packets just sitting in my shoebox outside in the garage. Many of them were opened and partially used. And then I had saved some seeds of my own from plants that are good to save from (like pumpkins, peppers, basil, cilantro, marigolds, etc.) and they were just in little baggies and looked all messy. I decided that an awesome way to store your seeds is in old baby food jars. They are the perfect size for most packets of seeds. You can just label and date them with a piece of tape and you are good to go – keeps them dry and safe.
I even emptied several packages out and cut out the back instructions on the package they came in and just taped that right to the jar. (See image below, jar on the left.) This has worked wonderfully well. I still have some seed packets in my shoebox, but now it is much more organized and I can tell what is there without having to rummage through all the little baggies.
If you need to check your seeds for viability, here is a link to an easy way you can check them before planting. I read somewhere else, and I can’t for anything remember where, (maybe in the Tightwad Gazette? – an absolutely awesome book!) if 7 out of 10 seeds germinate, then your seeds are approximately as viable as new seeds would be.