Win a copy of The Tourist Trail this week in the Writing forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • Anne Miller
  • paul wheaton
  • Joseph Lofthouse
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Mike Jay
garden masters:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Dave Burton
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Carla Burke
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Greg Martin

saving onion seeds

Posts: 70
Location: New Jersey
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
So, I am currently growing 2 types of storage onions in NJ(Zone 7). One is a yellow onion(Dorata di Parma) and the other is a red(Ruby red). I want to start saving my own seed and I know that saving your own seed for 2 different varieties of onion in a small garden can cause problems, so I was thinking that I could just alternate yellow this year, save red the next. However, that would mean planting onion seeds that are 2 years old. I know onion seeds are very short lived, so I was wondering if anyone has experience saving their own onion seeds and if planting 2 year old seed is still a viable option
Posts: 4538
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator


I grow my own onion seeds. I have a jar of mixed seed that was harvested between 2010 and 2014. It is currently germinating at about 50%. It has been stored at room temperature. Storing it in the fridge or freezer would have kept the germination rate higher. I live in a very arid climate, and store the seeds in glass canning jars. I think the aridity also helps with seed longevity.

Hybrid onions are male sterile, and thus don't produce pollen, so I only use non-hybrid varieties for seed production on my farm. I checked the variety names you gave, and they are both open pollinated so you should be good.

What's gotten into you? Could it be this tiny ad?
A rocket mass heater heats your home with one tenth the wood of a conventional wood stove
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!