Scientists in Russia got a big surprise recently: they found they were able to grow food from seeds that are 30,000 years old. The flower seeds had apparently been saved by a squirrel and preserved in permafrost. Scientists say this is the oldest plant material that has been brought back to life.
—Cary Fowler in “Saving Seeds,” on The Story podcast. APM. June 7, 2011.
I suppose the seed banks might actually be useful one day (http://www.croptrust.org/main/).