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Seed Germination: What seeds can I sow now?, 1 by blomma

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In reply to: What seeds can I sow now?

Forum: Seed Germination

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blomma wrote:
Mouli, this may help you with the seeds that need coldness to sprout. It is how I do all my seeds, including daylily seeds.

Photo #1
Sprouted daylily seedling in a kitchen towel just prior to planting.

BEGIN BY SOAKING SEEDS OVER NIGHT IN HAND HOT WATER. This will plump up and soften the seedcoat.

I use a damp kitchen paper towel, cut in half and moistened. Squeeze out the excess water. Fold it in half. Place the seeds in a corner and fold one end over the seeds. Place this package in a small ziplock bag and zip it, leaving a small opening to blow air into the bag to fill like a balloon. Once filled, zip it closed. Place in fridge crisper for 3 weeks to stratify the seeds. After 2 weeks, check to see if any have begun to sprout, which sometimes they do. After 3 weeks, move to room temp to germinate.

Sprouting time depends on variety. At this point, check the seeds several times during the week, starting after the 3rd day. As soon as seeds have formed a radical (tiny roots forming) with a tweezer grasp the seed casing of those and transfer to seed flat or pot. Make a hole with a pencil and guide the root into the hole. Plant so the seed is 1/4" below the surface, 1" or more, apart. Be sure to place roots downwards in the hole. If the roots have grown into the paper towel, just tear around the roots and plant it. Do not try to remove the roots from the paper. The paper will eventually rot.

Until the sprouted seeds have broken through the soil, they do not need light. However, once they do, grow them in a sunny window, under light, or place the flat outside in a protected area if weather is warm.

When the seedlings are large enough to handle, pot them in a 3" pot. I use the 3" foam cups made for coffee. A screwdriver will easily punch drainage holes. The cups are cheap to buy at Walmart, or if used, save them from work.

Skip the fridge if seeds don't need coldness to sprout. As far as light, small or tiny seeds should be sown top of soil (surface sown) and not covered. That is all "require light" means. It isn't referring to actual light, just not cover seed. If covered, they would never make it. Larger seeds needs to be covered.

This method will work with Rocky Mountain Columbine and Echinacea purpurea. It is how I did it. If stored properly (in fridge) most seeds will be viable for years.

When it states to sow spring, sow seeds in the coolest month in your country. That would be January.

By the way, your written English is very good.

Edited to add that the photo is of daylily seeds that sprouted in kitchen paper towel, just prior to planting.

This message was edited May 7, 2012 10:21 PM

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