Friday, July 9, 2010

Planting Seeds

So far, germination on coffee filters has been going along fabulously. In 5 days, I've had sprouts from Yarrow (Cerise and Colorado Mix), Salvia (Merleau Blue and Rose), Blue Globe Thistle, and Echinacea (basic Purpurea and Magnus). Still no signs of life from hardy Geranium or Balloon Flower. Frozen seeds from Yarrow, Salvia, and Thistle have done well... but so have unfrozen ones, so freezing might not be necessary.

As soon as they germinate, I plant them in little starter cells. For tiny ones, I wait for the first leaves... but there is a tradeoff, since you don't want the root to grow into the coffee filter such that you damage it when you pull it off.

To make the cells, I put some seed-starter mix into a bowl and pre-moisten it. This is much easier than trying to wet it later... the dry mix repels water.

Then I put the moist seed-starter mix into trays. I decided to use some egg cartons I had around, rather than buying peat pots or something like that.

Very carefully, I pick up a sprouting seed on the tip of a knife, and put it into a cell, root side down. This is a sprouting Echinacea Magnus seed-- the first!

Right away, I put in a label. Eventually I'll probably find something more durable, but cardboard strips were easy in a pinch.

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