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Richard Bunn

Not germinating yet

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Hi all

On 16th June I sowed 24 water soaked and scarified seeds of Drosophyllum. Not one of them has germinated yet. Is it normal to take this long for even one of them? I know they can take a while but I thought (hoped) I'd maybe get 2 already.

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Hi Richard, mine took 31 days when I set them back in February. I expect seeds are somewhat variable so at 6 weeks-ish I wouldn't be worrying just yet, unless they're actually growing mould on them I'd just give them time.

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Mine germinated OK without scarification

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perhaps it's been too warm? I normally germinate mine in spring when it is much cooler. I heard that they germinate in autumn in the wild when it is cooler and wetter...

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Will have to hang on and see then. I'm awful impatient when it comes to germination.

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Quick update, they still haven't germinated at all. I think they were sat on the surface of the sowing media during the heatwave and the top of the peat pots were drying out.

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Round 2

I started to prepare some more seeds today. I still have some in the fridge for another attempt should this one fail. I've taken 30 seeds, nicked the end off the point of half the seeds with a knife and left the other half untreated. I've put them to soak in some rainwater for a couple of days. This time I shall be trying Peter D'Amato's method of sowing the seeds on the surface of moist to wet shallow sand and will watch them like a hawk for signs of germination. Then I'll transplant them into peat pots of sand, perlite and peat to grow on before final potting.

Should I sow them out in the unheated greenhouse or in the living room window where the temperature ranges from 17-21c? Also, should I use a propagator or not?

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Some seeds are not viable, however, there are seeds that germinate in a few days. Your seeds are not of good quality.

edit: The substrate does not matter to germinate

Edited by Moi Vinnok

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Then I'll transplant them into peat pots of sand, perlite and peat to grow on before final potting.

Should I sow them out in the unheated greenhouse or in the living room window where the temperature ranges from 17-21c? Also, should I use a propagator or not?

Hi Richard, could you not just sow straight into the peat pots and avoid the transplant? This worked for me last February. 4 out of my 5 seeds germinated like this. Mine were in a heated greenhouse with minimum temps about 9 or 10 degrees. I covered them at first but started to get some mould so removed the cover soon after.

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Some seeds are not viable, however, there are seeds that germinate in a few days. Your seeds are not of good quality.

edit: The substrate does not matter to germinate

I have seeds from a different source this time.

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Just wondering, should I have covered these seeds (ie. put them in a propagator or plastic bag)?

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I planted seed from the one batch in the soils D'amato and Mcpherson suggested and had no luck, then I tried 1 spag/1 peat/ 1 basalt/ 2 sand/ 1 violet mix and they sprung up in less than 2 weeks.

I scarified them all and soaked them in water for 48-50hours before planting, I have also tried using GA3 and got double the germination rate, but smoke treatment did nothing.

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Anyone have any input about whether I should cover the seeds or not?

I wouldn't, just leave in a sunny spot and forget about them.....as soon as you stop watching they spout like cress!

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I have no idea why this species gives me so much trouble. I often think it's because the mix is so free draining that the surface of the media isn't wet enough.

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The substrate does not matter to germinate, germinate at all, but it is important as adults.

High humidity at the beginning and the fourth leaf decrease watering.

Edited by Moi Vinnok

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I have quite a few germinating now.  Just a quick update as to the sowing method as I changed it again.  The tray of sand was proving difficult to water properly and dried out a little.  So I took a peat pot and put some peat and perlite in (mostly perlite) at a ratio of around about 4:1 perlite and peat (yes the perlite is that high as my sand is too fine to use in the soil mix).  I then pondered on the fact that the seeds could theoretically (likely be sat atop pieces of perlite and not being wet enough, even when the pot is stood in water.  So to counteract this I put a relatively thin layer of sand on top of the media as it would be a little wetter and the seeds would benefit from this better.  Bingo, in about 6 weeks they've started germinating quite a few to the pot.  

 

I managed to prick out a couple of seeds that the root hadn't entered the soil yet and put those two in a separate pot.  

 

Photo to follow.

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The reason why some of the pot looks a little mossy is because I re-used an old pot from my Drosophyllum attempt last year.

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