Growing species gladiolus is fun, but not so fool proof. Germination can be tricky (and the most difficult part, IMO), and some researching before you embark on such an endeavor will help immensely. Unfortunately, information is often lacking, and you may need to extrapolate from similar known species.
That's a great price for those seeds. Just don't beat yourself (or the supplier) up if the seeds don't germinate. While you will never really know if the seeds are viable (as with anything on ebay), chance are just as great that the seed is just persnickety.
Is the species summer growing (in its native environment) or winter growing? If it is winter growing, you may find nothing sprouts from a spring planting until fall. Species glads may or may not be more winter hardy than hybrids.
G. watermeyeri is a winter growing one from the Cape of South Africa. Winter growing glads germinate best at cool temps, so if you have a place that gets down to 55 or so at night it should come up in about a month or less. Now is a good time to sow them. Alternatively, place the pot outdoors in a protected place in the fall and bring it in when they sprout (do not let it get exposed to frost). Young seedlings grow well under flourescent lights (close to tubes) in a cool room--you will want to continue to provide very good light or full sun when they get bigger. The seedlings will go dormant sometime in spring/early summer--then dry the pot out completely until October,when the cycle starts again. Silverhill seeds in South Africa has many winter growers on their lists (silverhillseeds.co.za), along with a number of summer growers.
Thank you so much for the great info. I got about a dozen or so types on ebay, I just haven't tried to grow them yet. I'm glad you specified the cool temps, I would have put tem on a heating pad if I didn't know that.
Just an update. I planted them in my cool basement and when I checked on them this morn alot of them have germinated. They look like very thin blades of grass. Now can I keep tem alive is the big question.
Here's what is growing, most don't have definate names. They are really fine blades, I don't know if they'll make it.
crimson and white
pink and white
I also planted Puya Berteroniana along with them and it's growing really well.
It's not uncommon for glad species types to sprout from seed and only have green for a month. You might think they have died but for some reason at such a young stage they just want to go dormant sooner than normal. So don't throw them away if this happens.