Two soils were kept moist at 4 degrees C, -20 degrees C or air-dried at 20-22 degrees C and after one week, one month, two months and six months of storage at these conditions changes in soil populations of Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. trifolii (Rlt) and Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae (Rlv) were examined. In one air-dried soil (from Grab6w) markedly lower numbers of both Rlt and Rlv., as compared to the refrigerated or frozen samples, were found already after 1 week of storage. In the case of the second soil (from Osiny) air-drying significantly reduced numbers of the rhizobia after 2 and 6 months of storage. The soil from Osiny contained higher amounts of C org, total N and clay than the Grabów soil. Both soils stored moist in a refrigerator (4 degrees C) or frozen (-20 degrees C) retained similar populations of the examined rhizobia throughout the entire storage period, indicating that soil freezing is not detrimental for the examined rhizobia.