good and bad allium seeds

Diane Whitehead
Sun, 30 Sep 2007 13:02:14 PDT
While I was cleaning my allium seeds I shook the sieve a bit too  
vigourously and scattered seeds on the table.  In picking them up, I  
gripped one too hard and it disintegrated.  It had looked perfectly  
sound, so I tested more and my fingers pulverized them, too.  Maybe  
the lighter bad seeds had ended up at the top of the sieve, so they  
were the ones that flew out.

I grabbed a pinch of seeds from further down in the sieve, and rubbed  
them between my fingers.  Most remained intact, but not all.

I have never done this before, either with seeds I have donated, or  
seeds I have received or bought. I don't always have good success  
germinating alliums, and perhaps this may be one reason why.

How common is it to have allium seeds that look perfectly sound, but  

Is there an easy way to test them?  I don't want to rub each seed  
before I donate it.  Would putting them in water so that the bad ones  
float be a good way?

Diane Whitehead
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
maritime zone 8, cool Mediterranean climate
mild rainy winters, mild dry summers

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