How to Check for Seed Viability (Video)

Use our seed viability test to make sure you get the most from your saved seeds every year.

By Kale Roberts

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Are My Garden Vegetable Seeds Still Good?

You are a little too good at saving seeds at the end of the garden season; now you have drawers full of past years’ seeds. But are your old seeds still good for planting this year? Take a look at the expiration date first. According to Iowa State University, the life expectancy of vegetable seeds is as follows:

1 Year — Onion, parsley, parsnip, salsify
2 Years — Sweet corn, leeks, okra, pepper
3 Years — Asparagus, beans, broccoli, carrots, celeria, celery, Chinese cabbage, Kohlabi, spinach, peas
4 Years — Beets, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, Swiss chard, chicory, eggplant, fennel, kale, mustard, pumpkin, rutabaga, squash, tomato, turnip, watermelon
5 Years — Collards, cucumber, endive, muskmelon, radish
6 Years — Lettuce

Perform a Seed Viability Test

You Will Need: