Bald cypress germinate

dragontreesJuly 19, 2004


I got some bald cypress seeds, and the person I got it from said there would be instructions, but there weren't. So if there are any bald cypress experts (or people who know how to grow them) Can I please have any techniques on how to sprout them and get them going?


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Shouldn't be too difficult if the seed is fresh. Check with folks in tree forum, they will tell you what to do to be successful. PF

    Bookmark   July 25, 2004 at 9:28AM
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Hi,might be able to help,the back of my place IS a cypress head. When the seed drop they only seem to sprout if they first land in water, then as the water recedes they're left high and dry(so to speak) in the mud. That's when they germinate. Once they are off and growing they'll take MUCH dryer conditions.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2004 at 10:14PM
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Hi, I'm from the tree forum.

It is recommended that one soak the Bald Cypress (Taxodium distichum) seeds in ethyl alcohol for about 15 minutes then rinse with water. I had some ethyl alcohol but ran out so the last time I used a cheep drunk liquor called "Everclear". Anyway, after you rinse them, soak them for 24 hours then drain and rinse again and soak for another 24 hours. Drain the seeds and pat them dry. Take a little plastic baggie and fill it with vermiculite or similar that is damp. You want it to be damp and not moist or wet. Place your plastic baggie in the frig for 90 days and that should satiate the requirement for cold stratification which breaks embryo dormancy.

There are those who have equally good results by soaking the whole cone in water for 3-4 days then rinsing the seeds and placing them in a damp (not moist or wet) paper towel and sticking that in a plastic ziplock in the frig until spring and then you can just direct sow them into the ground.

Bald Cypress prefers "wet feet" although it will tolerate dry soil as mentioned by swamptromper. I generally prefer to plant trees where they are most likely to thrive as this insures they are less stressed which means they can better withstand insects and diseses.

Best wishes to you.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2004 at 12:35AM
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Thanks Luara, but they have been in the fridge for a fews months now, do you think that will mess with their growing pattern?


    Bookmark   August 9, 2004 at 5:57PM
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My take on this is that it should be an experiment. Go ahead remove them from the fig and soak them for a few days in water and plant them. What can it hurt? You might want to consider planting them in a 2-liter bottle of pop with the top cut off and a few tiny holes drilled in the bottom but I used solo cups with little drill holes in the bottom for mine. Barely cover the seed with your planting medium. Place them outside on a patio in a sunny spot and leave them there. Worse case scenario is that nothing germinates. I have a lot of that happening around here and Ilex opaca comes to mind as well as Chionanthus virginicus.

This fall, go out and grab a few pine cones and experiment again by trying to germinate half the first way described and the other half the other way. You might be pleasantly surprised next spring if you are able to germinate enough to share with friends and neighbors.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2004 at 2:16AM
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