Once again, it is that time of the year: when your phone rings, you inadvertently answer, and it's a seed company ready to set up a delivery date. And not in a month or two, but next week.
It's hard to believe we are there again. Didn't we just finish harvest?
Handling seed over the past few years has changed quite a bit – there have been changes in the weights of bags, and we have added bulk bags and pro-boxes. But no matter how your seed comes to your farm, it all needs to be handled and stored correctly until time to load the planter.
There is still a lot of seed sold in bags. Whether you are trying a new variety out or have a smaller field, bags are sometimes easier to handle in these situations. Once bulk bags and pro boxes are open, you are responsible for all the seed, whether you use it all or not.
Rodent control is another issue with bags. Most pallets come shrink wrapped, which helps to control some rodent activity – but it is obviously not fool proof.
Bulk seed bags should be handled with care, as the material can tear easily. Before setting them on a pallet, it is best to place a large piece of cardboard between the pallet and bag to keep the wood from wearing or ripping holes in the material. Bulk bags do not stack easily and aren't very stable, so never stack more than two high and always make sure the bags are settled before stacking.
It is really important that bags and bulk bags be stored in a dry cool environment under a roof.
The great thing about pro-boxes is that they are sturdy, fairly rodent proof, weather proof and stack much easier than bulk bags. They still should be stored in a cool dry area and under roof.
However you choose to get your seed, it is a huge investment and should be cared for properly to ensure it's ready to go at planting time.