odd/difficult sarracenia 'okee giant' seeds

dnieter(5)August 30, 2007

Last year I cross-pollinated two of my S.minor "Okeefenokee Giant" plants and one had an excellent seed-set in the flower. I put the seed pod in the fridge for the month of November, then stratified the seeds on peat in a refrigerator and sprayed with fungicide. I should point out that I had forty seed compartments with two seeds/compartment. Nothing happened until May when seven seeds sprouted at the exact same time. Since then, I've had three more sprout (one this week) from seeds I thought were long-dead.

My question is, how drawn-out is this Sarracenia seed sprouting? I've got >100 plants and I would like to start sprouting seeds from some of the rarer ones (S. montana, rosea, alabamensis, oreophila, etc.) I'm going to grow these seedlings year-round for the first year (this winter) then hibernate them the winter of '98-'99.

I'm not complaining, because I'll always be happy with more Okee Giants, but I was hoping somebody with more experience at seed proliferation could give me some pointers.

Thanks in advance.

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Hello dnieter,

I have heard reports that Sarracenia seeds take 2 weeks to 6 months or even a year to sprout. The seed coat is thick and layered in a waxy protective coating that has to degrade during cold wet periods of at least 2-3 months. I think that temperature variations also help with this process of degradation as I had over 100 Sarracenia hybrid seeds sprout with about 70+ germination within a few weeks, most within the first 2-4 weeks after warming them up. I just used an ice chest and varied the temperature between 40-50 degrees day/night by opening the chest by day. I replaced ice bottles around the pots every 12 hours and kept the seeds damp by misting. I also used some fungicide, but in the ice chest, I did not notice fungus growth like I did in the fridge. This is due to airing it out, misting the seeds, and allowing light in for 12 hours to kill off fungus daily. I stratified mine for 8 weeks in the ice chest and most of my seedlings are still growing after the usual die off from non-viability.

They were taken out about half-way through February, started sprouting in March, and this is today, about 6 months later.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2007 at 7:42PM
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What worked for me was put each seed type in plastic bags of water and float the bags in a bucket of water, in my cold attic, by a south window. That was it - no fungicide and no maintenance. They need not only cold but wet for true stratification. When it came time to sow them I had them poured out into glorified plastic pots and covered them, right by the window. Within ~10 days they began to germinate.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2007 at 7:43PM
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I have a ton of sarracenia seedlings that sprouted rather quickly, but my latest attempts see to be a little sluggish. One is a normal S.minor-my first attempt at this species. Perhaps there is something slower about them? Of course the S."rosea" is also taking its sweet ol' time.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2007 at 9:43PM
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Seedlings are usaully very slow growing.
For example:It may take a few weeks for a baby VFT to produce 1 leaf after it's seed leaves.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2007 at 10:43PM
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