This Is How Martha Organizes and Stores Leftover Seeds
Bookmark this piece of garden wisdom for the season ahead.
Before you followed Martha on Instagram, you looked forward to learning from her on the air—and you still can. The Best of the Martha Show takes you right back into our founder's studio to rediscover her most timeless homekeeping tips and Good Things, galore.
It's no secret that our founder likes to start her bountiful gardens from seeds, but with that comes a copious number of leftover packets and loose seeds to manage. "My basement has become the seed storage," Martha once said of her former residence, Turkey Hill, on an episode of The Martha Stewart Show. But our founder didn't just toss her leftover gardening essentials into boxes in true Martha fashion, her system for storing seeds not only keeps them fresh, but also organized for the season to come. "You'll make the most out of that packet of seeds, if you store them correctly," she explains.
For leftover packets, Martha suggests placing them in long wooden file boxes (skinny vintage drawers work, too!) where they can sit back-to-back. To keep each variety organized, cut out several cardboard dividers and label them according to the type of seeds filed behind each, such as peppers, spinach, and squash. Just don't forget to include a divider specifying the varieties you planted this season—including the date they went into the ground.
Another way Martha likes to store these garden staples? In glass mason jars, which can house loose seeds or packets. Toss in a desiccate, made from a cheesecloth filled with dried milk or untreated cat litter, to absorb excess moisture, which will prolong their shelf life. And if all you have laying around is a zip-top bag, she says that will work, too. Just don't forget to include a label on the outside specifying the type of seeds in the baggie.
But no matter what container you choose to hold your seeds, Martha says the most important thing to remember is that they must be placed in a dry, cool, dark space, where the temperature is about 40 degrees Fahrenheit—no exceptions.