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BLACKJACK

Corn seed germination???

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How long/how many years will a bag of seed corn still be good and have good germination?

I'm unsure on how big a plot I'm going to plant this year, it could be anywhere from 2-6 acres, if I stock up, how long will those extra bags keep, considering that seed is probably a few years old anyway, since the seed companies had to gather it and rebag it for conservation.

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I would figure it going down some percentage every year and after its 3-4 years old I would get some newer stuff. If you have a chance you can usually pick up some torn bags or other donated seed at some seed plants. You could also contact your local Pheasants Forever chapter and get a new bag as they usually have some to give away.

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You can do a gremination test. Count out 100 seeds. Put 2 to 4 layers of paper towels on a large plate, place seed flat on paper towels and cover all seed with 2 layers of paper towels. Keep paper towels and corn moist and warm for 6 to 8 days. I put mine on top of the fridge.

You also want to do a cold test. Do the same setup in your garage with temps around 50 degrees.

The amount of kernels that germinate out of the 100 will be your germination percent per bag.

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Generally corn lasts a couple years, after that all bets are off and the percentage germ can drop rapidly. The germ test as suggested by huntmup is a good idea.

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If you carry over any seed in the original bag take a small nail and poke a bunch of holes in the bag, sides, top and bottom. the reason for this is the seed bags are air tight and seed needs air cirulating to stay good. In the old days all seed was sold in a cloth bag that provided circulation. Just a old farmer. wink.gif

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TEST IT before planting. Pioneer is having issues that new seed is only germinating at 70% so depends on how and where it's been stored. Legally after 2 or 3 yrs we can't sell most seeds. Test before planting

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Thanks for the advice guys! I will test it before planting. I realize I could probably get more but I don't want to deprive someone else if the bags I have are still good. Plus corn is more spendy to establish, with the spraying and fertilizer costs, may as well do it right, even if its 'just a food plot'.

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