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How Long do Cannabis Seeds Last?

When it concerns cannabis seeds, many novice cultivators often find themselves with some from an old friend or a previous stash. With the recent wave of legalization, new growers are choosing to revive these seeds and commence their own cultivation endeavors. Nonetheless, an essential question arises: what is the viability period of marijuana seeds before they lose their ability to germinate?




Viability Duration of Marijuana Seeds

Various factors influence the longevity of cannabis seeds, with conservation being of paramount importance. If acquired from a seed bank, seeds are often packaged and can be stored in a dark, dry location, typically with a recommended planting timeframe of within a year.


However, for those intending to crossbreed plants and generate their own seeds, it's crucial to master the techniques of harvesting, drying, and preserving seeds to ensure their longevity prior to germination. Proper cannabis seed storage is a pivotal aspect, especially for professional cannabis cultivators.


Indeed, the seed's significance matches that of the eventual outcome. High-quality results necessitate high-quality seeds. Unbeknownst to many novice growers, cannabis seeds demand specific care. How these seeds are stored profoundly affects their eventual success. Refer to the "Cannabis Seeds – Buy Marijuana Seeds" section for dependable strain options.


Drying of Cannabis Seeds

Initiating the process involves pollinating flowers on a female cannabis plant and then harvesting the seeds once maturity is attained. Subsequently, the seeds must be dried before storage or germination. Seeds are considered ready for harvesting when they exhibit a dark brown hue or show dark stripes. Commonly, individuals opt to dry seeds by first drying the flowers, which makes the removal of seeds more straightforward.


Storage Lifespan of Marijuana Seeds

Effective storage becomes crucial for utilizing the seeds at a later time. Remarkably, under optimal conditions, successful germination of cannabis seeds that are five years old is plausible. Exceptional cases have even reported seeds lasting up to a decade when stored optimally, albeit with potentially extended germination periods compared to fresh seeds. For home growers, preserving and managing seeds is vital, and this holds even truer for seed banks, as improperly stored seeds may not germinate, or if they do, they might not thrive. Specific parameters guide long-term seed storage.

Seed Preservation: Light Exposure First and foremost, it's imperative to employ containers that completely shield seeds from light. Previous experience in germinating cannabis seeds highlights the pivotal role light plays in successful germination. Excessive light exposure can render seeds weak or even impair germination.


Seed Preservation: Temperature Control Temperature significantly impacts seed viability. For short-term storage, maintaining a stable temperature suffices – avoid locations with temperature fluctuations. In contrast, long-term storage necessitates maintaining a temperature of approximately 6-8°C (42.8-46.4°F). Consider obtaining a small cooler dedicated to seed storage to ensure a consistent low temperature. Frequent fridge access may cause temperature fluctuations, so storing seeds separately is advised. Use opaque containers or black bags to prevent light exposure when storing in the fridge.


Seed Preservation:

Humidity Regulation Humidity stands as another pivotal factor influencing seed viability. Relative humidity primarily governs seed germination, and given their delicate state, unintentional germination should be averted. For those residing in diverse climates, humidity levels directly impact storage methods. Generally, maintain a low-humidity container. In regions with high humidity, specific measures might be necessary to reduce humidity levels.


Cannabis seeds can germinate with a relative humidity (RH) of 40-60%, with values exceeding this potentially causing drowning and death. On the other hand, humidity levels of 9-20% could result in issues like pests, fungi, or seed sweating due to excessive heat. The optimal humidity range for seed storage is 20-30% RH.



Extending the Viability of Marijuana Seeds

By integrating the aforementioned considerations, the most effective method for prolonged storage involves vacuum-sealing seeds and subsequently placing them within opaque containers or bags to block light. Maintaining a constant temperature of 6-8°C (42.8-46.4°F) is advisable. Some growers resort to products like silica sachets to counteract humidity shifts caused by external temperature/humidity variations, particularly useful in humid or hot climates.



Notably, excessive light or temperature variations can deplete seed nutrient reserves, rendering them unviable.

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As a grower-to-be, I appreciate the value this little post gives in helping make sure I stand the best chance at storing before my first grow. I purchased seeds a month ago but my indoor startup was delayed due to unforseen circumstances. Hopefully these storage tips can help me have success when I can finally get the chance to begin the grow.

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