Frequent inquiries from new growers are often related to cannabis seeds. How can they be stored safely? How long will they last in storage? Will they retain the same qualities as newer seeds? When stored appropriately, yes, you can grow prime cannabis plants with decade-old seeds, just as you could with seeds that are only a few months old. A few basic things to remember are, always store seeds in a cool, dark, dry location, and never let them see direct sunlight.
When cannabis seeds are properly stored, most growers find the majority are still full of life after five years. Many growers have even grown high-grade cannabis with seeds up to 10 years old.
WHY IS PROPER SEED STORAGE NECESSARY
With the correct method of storage, cannabis seeds could remain viable for 5-10 years! Seed storage is important for many reasons. Someone who just created their own, high-quality genetics, may want to keep the seeds to reproduce the strain.
Some people who live in regions where there is a lot of cannabis activism and reform are currently stockpiling seeds of their favourite strains to grow when it’s legal in the future. Whatever your reason may be for having seeds, remember that taking care of them is one of the most important things you can do for your harvest.
THE ATMOSPHERE IS KEY – COLD, DRY & DARK
Cannabis seeds should be stored somewhere cold and frigid. Whether you store your seeds in a freezer, refrigerator, or even a cabinet or drawer, it’s important to leave them there until it’s time to germinate. Rapid temperature variations will destroy the genetic integrity of your seeds.
Furthermore, seeds should never be exposed to direct sunlight and should be kept in a dark, dry place. Excess light and humidity can lead to premature germination. Ideally, 9% or less humidity is preferred.
DIFFERENT METHODS FOR SEED STORAGE
If only being stored for a few months, cannabis seeds should do fine in a grip-seal bag, placed in a mason jar or some other type of airtight container. For more long-term storage, a vacuum-sealed package is a much more popular option. Many seasoned seed-savers like to add a food-grade desiccant to their package as well.
As mentioned above, seeds require cold temperatures so they don’t lose their essence. Either freezing or refrigeration will do. However, when keeping seeds in the refrigerator, keep them as far back as possible so they won’t be exposed to any temperature changes when the door is opened.
It’s also important to note that when freezing seeds, every time they are thawed and refrozen, they become less viable. Both freezing and refrigeration can also lead to excess moisture, so that’s something that needs to be monitored closely.
When cannabis seeds are properly stored, most growers find the majority are still full of life after five years. Many growers have even grown high-grade cannabis with seeds up to 10 years old. There’s never an exact formula when it comes to natural, living organisms, but just like humans, cannabis plants (and their seeds) can always benefit from a little extra tender loving care.