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COONTIE

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

How do you start from seed. Just picked seed up last week. They have orange coating on them and feel a little wet. From what I've read they take forever to grow but maybe I'll still be here in 2 or 3 years. LOL
Just want to experiment plus says they attract atala butterflys which are rare. Nothing ventured nothing gained.
Thanks in advance for any hints.
Bonnie

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Bonnie, here's a link to Ocala.com, where a local tells, step by step, how he has successfully started this plant from seed:

http://www.ocala.com/article/20070505/BIGSUNHOMES/205050305

Please keep us posted on how you do with this seed!

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Read the link. Planted them yesterday with directions aboutthe same from E-how. Said at least 6 weeks until germination.
Wrote date on my calendar so we'll see how accurate it is. Only thing I see different it said to scarify seed so we did.
Let you know if they grow.
Bonnie

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

We look forward to pictures!

Ft Myers, FL(Zone 10a)

Kay, I used that same tutorial last spring to root some fresh coontie seed. It came up sporadically, but it did work. I found it to be
the best info on the web for getting them started. Tip: Use distilled or rain water if possible, and keep them moist. And good luck to you.

This message was edited Feb 10, 2013 6:52 AM

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Thank you. Haven't had rain for months but I do have distilled water for my gravity feed iron in my workrm. so will use that.

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

Thanks for bringing this subject up Bonnie! Thank you Kay for sharing the site info. This was one of those things I have thought of in the past and forgot about. They grow wild in the woods out where my family lives off SR40 and around the house. They always get those large pine cone flowers and I have never tried planting the orange seeds. I'm gonna' collect some and give it a try now! I think it would be fun to see how the babies develop!

Glad to hear you have had some success TrumpetFlowerz...

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

I had squirrels eat any seeds that were developing on my plant - HATE those darned squirrels!!!!

Gainesville, FL(Zone 9a)

I love my coontie. Deep green, disease free, multiply, dont take much water. Love the orange seeds and the interesting 'pod'. The squirrels, in fact, do love the seeds. Fine with me, they are such slow growers from seed, Id just as soon buy them. They are easily divided.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Used to have lots of squirrels but not any more. Now we are having serious problems with wild rabbits. Didn't bother with vegie garden this winter as we have to put up a fence and gate. We tried electric wire 2 strands but that didn't stop them.
I'm determined to keep them out one way or the other. One man told me there is such a thing as rabbit fencing 16 ga. galv. and it keeps them from chewing through fencing. Now, I have never had rabbits chew through fencing but I guess its possible. My dog can't get them cause they run into pasture and she can't get thru that fencing. Smart little devils.
Bonnie

Ft Myers, FL(Zone 10a)

Old trick that worked for us, human pee. Get a few glass jars of the stuff and sprinkle liberally around perimeter of garden.
Know it sounds strange, but it does work
edit: rabbits and deer, don't know about squirrels-they are airborn, lol

This message was edited Feb 16, 2013 12:03 PM

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Thank you TrumpetFlowerz. We are desperate and will try anything. Buying fox urine is very expensive and my SIL who is an avid hunter and traper said after one rain it doesn't work. Family contributions would be much cheaper. Now to talk them into accepting donation jars.

Bonnie

Ft Myers, FL(Zone 10a)

We are the main predators on this planet. I guess that is why it works Bonnie. You also mentioned rabbits chewing wire..rabbits dig holes so
my problem was them going under fence, not through it. The pee did stop them, and I hope it works for you too. Squirrels went along our chainlink
fence and just dove into the corn-I caught them right in the act-corn patch descimated. But since you said squirrels no longer an issue for you
you might be OK?

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

I have lots of coontie and lots of seeds. I started picking them up and putting them on the top of dirt in pots, nothing else special. I watered them when everything else got watered. I did this because that's how they germinate laying in a pile next to momma, which I have witnessed. I did get germination, not sure what rate, but pretty good I'd say. I recently pulled weeds in the pots these were in and turned the dirt over. All the babies had been moved already. Well, I got more sprouting. So, long after their mates had sprouted more came up after a little repositioning.

Erin

Jacksonville, FL(Zone 9a)

I have a very large coontie that I try to divide every couple of years to keep it at a reasonable size. Also planted some of the seeds when mine first started producing them. Put them in a pot of another plant that I had on the back patio----forgot all about doing that, until about a year later, had shoots coming out.

Didn't do anything special, stuck the entire orange pod into the the dirt, about one inch deep---as I said- fogot they were there!

Thing is, & I may be wrong---have always heard that the seeds of the coontie are poisonous to animals.

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

Did they sprout Camillia?

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

A friend thru her orange covered seeds in ground and she said they all sprounted. She is not an avid gardner and didn't really care for them but they grew.

Trumpet:
Man told me rabbits ATE through his chain link fence. Husb. said they must have been giant rabbits with steel teeth. We both just laughed.

Right now I have 3 large truck loads of tree trimmings from power co. that were chipped but are too large for mulch so I am using a 8 HP shredder and doing it myself. What a job. 3 days I've been at it and used up 2 -5 gal. cans of gas and just made a dent in it. I shall persist. Got RU coming up here and its really an eyesore. Plus I need it to mulch all flower beds.
A 20 yd. dump of pine bark nuggests in $345. At least thats what I paid last time 2 yrs. ago. Good thing I have a Kubota with a little 36" bucket on it to haul finished mulch in to beds. Love my Kubota.

Bonnie

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

Lucky you Bonnie!

Ft Myers, FL(Zone 10a)

Bonnie,
Here (and when we lived in SE Florida, found the same too) our local city offered up free mulch. What the local municipalities do is
cut down and chip up the mellaluca and other junk trees, and then offer them to public already mulched. All you have to do is have a truck
and a shovel, you can get all you want. There is one locale just 3 miles from me, behind library. An endless stack of free mulch.
Here is link to ours, if it helps you find (keywording?) one in your own, or another reader in Ft. Myers:
http://www3.leegov.com/gov/dept/SolidWaste/Residents/Pages/Mulchsites.aspx

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Our transfer station is close enough to me to drive my Kubota up and load our truck but I have never seen them chip tree limbs and its loaded with them. I'll call waste mgmt. Mon. and find out if they do. Sure would be handy for me. Watch those mellaluca chips. Those trees have an oil that makes some people itch.
When I was with the Fl. Div. of Rec & Parks being the dist. office we used to get complaints all the time from folks living around Weedon Island State Preserve which was one of my areas everytime we burned them. Some said they were severely allergic to the smoke and it broke them out with an itchy rash. They are an exoxtic so those and Brazillion peppers we spent a fortune trying to rid of preserve of them. Bulldozer and round up didn't stop them. We had to stop burning. Was a real pain in the neck.
Thank you I forgot about checking into that.
Bonnie

Ft Myers, FL(Zone 10a)

It sounds like you are well ahead of me in knowing what to do. :) I have heard of the mellalucas and some people being allergic. Thankfully, I'm not one
of those people.
Yes, the pepperbushes are a pain in the rear too. And remember reading how two Aussie millionaires flew over the glades (was it in the 20's?) and seeded our everglades full of the mellalucas.
If they only would have known what it would do to Florida's future. I am glad post had you remember something you know so much about :)

Jacksonville, FL(Zone 9a)

David---as I said, took about a year, but yes, the seeds do sprout.
Much easier to do divides of the mother plant. Will shock back, but comes back strong!

Will offer up cuttings of mine this year when the weather gets right. Also have seeds if anyone wants them!

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

A whole year Camillia? Wow... I think the pups are a better idea too than that!

Thank you for sharing your experiances...

David

Indian Harbour Beach, FL(Zone 10a)

yes, the coontie does attract the Atala butterfly. Our local zoo had a request for fronds not too long ago. I'm leery of the free mulch offered by our city as I have no idea what they've got shredded up in it -- could be diseased trees cut down by residents, or overly sprayed with toxic pesticides. I am always amazed at how much people spray, whether it's needed or not!

Jacksonville, FL(Zone 9a)

The Coontie that I have, is a piece from a friends that I got about 10 years ago. I try to keep it divided, every year or so, in order to keep it to a certain size. They can get VERY large if un-checked, & where I have mine----needs to be kept in place!!!

As I posted before---have many root/tuber cuttings that I'm willing to give away come this spring & all the seeds any-one wants to try.

Will re-post this on my trade list, although, the only thing I ask, is if you are out of my area---pay the shipping & handling!

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Hi Camillia,
Hope you will bring some of those seeds with you to roundup as all this discussion has generated interest in them. My seeds are not up yet but its not time I think. Said 6 weeks from planting I put date on plant stake but I've been outside working all day and I'm stayaing in now to thaw out.
Hope plants make it thru tonight when temps. dip down to 38 or below.
Bonnie

Jacksonville, FL(Zone 9a)

Bonnie,

Will bring what seeds I have from last year & can bring some root cuttings if any-one desires. Just need to know a little ahead of time, if cuttings.


Been down in the 30s the last few days----got down inro the 20s this morning. Still didn't hurt the Coontie!!!
Found that if I plant the seeds/undried---takes longer to come up---dried, a little less time. Mine are dried.


Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

I would greatly appreciate some cuttings. I'm trying to increase my butterfly garden. Thank you for the offer. If I just let them grow how big do they get? I do a lot of pruning at times but only if a plant has been damaged by cold. I like the jungle look. My garden is definitely not a groomed space.
Bonnie

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Planted coontie Feb. 4 says on plant stake. Nothing yet but I'm just going to leave them in the pot and watr as needed.

Erin, could you bring some seeds or cuttings with you to RU? Would greatly appreciate it in the event these don't make it.

Bonnie

DeLand, FL(Zone 9b)

Sure! I have a ton of seeds. :)

Erin

Flagler Beach, FL(Zone 9b)

Bonnie, I just started to read this thread, and I too have a coontie plant, and seeds, We were talking about what I could bring to the Ru, and I'll deff bring some seed! Check out my picture! I just found out what they were,( by asking on another thread,) and am going to try to get some started myself, but have plenty to share! I'll be sure to bring some seeds or pods, as my coontie has quite a few of the pine cone shaped seed pods. My coontie is about 6' x 7', give or take some. it was here when we moved in, and I'd never seen a plant like this! Now I feel like I hit a jack pot! :)

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