Seed Testing Services
Seed testing services are provided to
producers, consumers, and regulatory agencies to allow more transparency
regarding a specific seed product. Seed lots undergo testing to allow
for more information to be obtained regarding the viability status, the
purity component, among other testing services.
- Viability refers to the
amount of seed that contain pure, disease-free, life. A germination or a
tetrazolium test is administered upon the seed sample to determine the
amount of viable seed in that lot.
- Purity within a seed lot meant that a
sample was tested for a non-desired seed content. Meaning that the test
looks for weed seed, inert matter (broken seeds), or other seeds other
than what desired.
- Noxious Weed examinations consist of
looking for specific weed species that are prohibited within the state
of Nevada. This examination can be broadened to encompass noxious weed
seed species for all states.
Seed testing is preferred for all
certified seed that is produced within the state of Nevada. Some
projects require certified, tested seed before the seeds can be used.
Some of these projects include;
- Nevada Department of Transportation erosion control projects
- Nevada Department of Wildlife restoration projects
- Nevada Department of Forestry reclamation projects
- Other state and federal conservation projects
How to Take a Proper Sample
- A sample that is representative of the entire lot to be tested is necessary.
- To ensure unbiased sampling, seed needs to be sampled by taking equal portions throughout the entire lot.
- A specific tool, such as a trier can be used to ensure that even volumes are being taken from each area of the lot.
- Each sample taken that requires testing must be bagged separately and labeled appropriately with the following information:
Common name, Variety
Scientific name (Genus Species Subspecies)
Or the "Request for Seed Test" form can be added to the sample bag
- Use a securely sealed bag or envelope to enclose the sample.
- Ship the sample to the following location or call the number below for a sample pickup (if possible):
Nevada Department of Agriculture
Attn: Seed Lab
405 S. 21st Street
Sparks, NV 89431
- Each species has a specific sample weight that must be obtained for proper seed testing to occur. The sample weights by species are listed below: