How long can you save seeds / bulbs for?
Now before I waffle on too deeply I know that scientists have managed to germinate seeds found in squirrel winter stores that were dated around 32,000 years of age but for this discussion I'm thinking more of the seeds we're likely to find in our potting sheds / pantry (or as I found this morning a pack of rocket seed in my sock drawer - no idea how it got stuffed in there but it does make me question what I might find in the potting shed boxes!)
I have left over from this year several packs of part used seeds (predominately salad type leaves, tomato plants, ornamental poppies I've collected from the garden...) some of which would have been brought in late 2012. They're all kept in little paper envelopes sealed in a plastic tub and left in a cool but frost free room.
Should I expect any of these seeds to be viable after more than a year? How long do seeds "last" if they're treated well? In fact what is the best way to store seeds?
Are there any tricks / tips for telling if a seed is past its prime?
I've also some left over garlic and onion bulbs which came in mesh bags. Do these need storing in any special way to help the bulbs last a little longer? (i.e. dark / cool).
Thank you once again for your help! I look forward to showing you the results of your patience with my questions next year!