What Is The Best Way To Sew Echinacea Seeds?

Ft Lauderdale, FL(Zone 10a)

I was wondering if there is a best way to sew Echinacea seeds for obtaining the highest germination percentage. The more I read, the more confused I get. Some say refrigerate first, some say soak seeds for 24 hours, some say cover the seeds, some say do not cover the seeds. I've grown a few from seed just soaking them for 24 hours and then sewing them uncovered with a sprinkling of vermiculite. Is this a good way or is there a better way?
Thanks much,
Jon

(Clint) Medina, TN(Zone 7b)

I've never soaked my seeds. I had excellent results with Winter Sowing these. I planted some Echinacea "Hula Dancer" in January. I had so many germinate that it was a struggle planting them all. Since you don't have much of a winter there, you could try refrigerating yours. I find that the cold period does improve germination. I store my seeds in the veggie drawer too. I also found that using Jiffy Seed Starting Mix helps to prevent the seedlings from croaking before they have a chance to grow. I put potting soil in a pot. I then wet the Jiffy Seed Starter and put about a half inch or so on top of the potting soil. You don't want your seedlings to come into contact with potting soil when they first emerge.

If your seeds are hybrid seeds, you will have very low germination if they involve Paradoxa. I tried several different methods and these just have low germination. I think it's genetic.

I hope this helps you!

Portland, TX(Zone 9a)

How long would you think you need to refrigerate them for?

(Clint) Medina, TN(Zone 7b)

I'd refrigerate them at least 3-4 weeks or put them outside in January or February. I get pretty good germination even without the cold period if the seeds are fresh. The cold period just simulates the way they germinate in nature. Don't get them too wet before you put them in the fridge. There just seems like potential for fungus to develop there. Some people wet a paper towel and put the seeds in that and put in a zip/lock bag. This works well too and is more sanitary.

Ft Lauderdale, FL(Zone 10a)

Excellent question. I've always used seed starting mix for starting seeds and generally just bottom water until they get established. I had never refrigerated any seeds prior to sewing other than snapdragons and carnations. I would guess my method of sewing Echinacea seeds is producing a 50% germination rate within 1-2 weeks. I much appreciate the imput.
Jon

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

I just planted mine and they came up two to three weeks later and germination was about ninety percent

Ft Lauderdale, FL(Zone 10a)

I sewed some Echinacea "Amado" seeds on May 13 and they germinated on May 20. I just sewed mine on top of the seed starting mix with a sprinkling of vermiculite and put them on the kitchen table under the light that hangs down from the ceiling. I know that sounds pretty weird but thats usually how I do it.
Jon

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

they are pretty easy to germinate actually the only reason they dont spread much is that the birds eat the seeds on the heads, I sometimes sprinkle the seeds from the heads in strange places to see if they will grow that is in late fall and most of the time the next spring babies are there

Ft Lauderdale, FL(Zone 10a)

That's cool. I haven't noticed the birds down here in South Florida showing much interest in the Echinacea, but the butterflies are a bit obsessed with them as in this picture of Echinacea "Pink Parasol".
Jon

Thumbnail by amorecuore
Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

yes that is totally normal the butterflies and bees polinate them and the birds eat the seeds in late fall and winter that is why I love echies so much great flowers bloom for a very long time and it attracks so many insects and birds

(Clint) Medina, TN(Zone 7b)

those yellow finches eat the seeds here. One of them even built a nest near mine this year.

Ft Lauderdale, FL(Zone 10a)

The squirrels are the biggest problem here. I can't direct sew anything here...or at least I've given up on even trying anymore. If I sew practically anything, especially sunflower seeds, the next morning I can go outside and expect to find just seed shells laying around. At the very least there will be a freshly dug hole exactly in the same place I planted the seeds. Those squirrels will just look at me and "high five" each other.
Jon

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

I always start them inside then just as they are opening the baby leaves I plant them where I want them and they dont get eaten that way

Post a Reply to this Thread

You must log in and subscribe to Dave's Garden to post in this thread.
BACK TO TOP