too late to save butterfly bush seeds ?

rane_grow(7 soMD)January 19, 2009

Hi everyone, I have one of those newbie questions, feel free to laugh LOL ... is it too late to save butterfly bush seeds ? I sure wish I had researched this in the fall, I have a beautiful butterfly bush in my yard and would love to save some seeds from it, if its too late to do so now I will certainly do so later this year !

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remy_gw

Hi Rane,
Some plants hold their seeds into winter and can still be collected. They will be viable. I'm not sure about butterfly bush, but I don't think they hold on this long. There's no harm in checking though.
Remy

    Bookmark   January 19, 2009 at 8:54PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana(zone 5/6)

Hi Rane,

Today on my walk back from the mailbox I stopped to check and see if there were still seeds on my butterfly bush and there was!

To collect the seed, I take an old white (recycled)business envelope out with me. I cut one small portion of a faded bloom at a time, holding the branch so it won't jump once I cut the tip off. I then shake the tiny little tan hair like seeds down into the envy, and then proceed with the next little snipped portion. When I'm done collecting, there is nothing but thousands of the tiny seeds in the envy, with no chaff whatsoever.

I have several varieties of butterfly bushes, and on some the seed pods did not open for harvest until sometime in Dec.

Good luck!

Sue

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 10:55PM
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rane_grow(7 soMD)

Thanks Remy and Sue !! I think I'll be going out in the yard tomorrow with scissors and an envelope and see what I can harvest ;-) I just discovered the seed exchange forum last week and I so wish I had collected more seed from my gardens last year !!

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 9:20PM
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rane_grow(7 soMD)

I went outside today to look at the butterfly bush and sure enough there were tiny light brown "pods" open on the ends of the blooms, at first they looked empty but upon closer inspection they do have tiny hair like spikes inside, are these really the seeds ?

    Bookmark   January 24, 2009 at 5:55PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana(zone 5/6)

but upon closer inspection they do have tiny hair like spikes inside, are these really the seeds ?
Yes they are. That is why I found it was easiest to collect them into the envy as they were cut from the bush. I think there are many members though who do not know this, and often collect the pods before they have matured and split open meaning the seeds have not matured. I did that once myself. I have also received in trade some faded butterfly bush blooms that had not even made pods.

Sue

    Bookmark   January 26, 2009 at 12:17PM
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rane_grow(7 soMD)

I think I will plant a few of these hair like spikes and see if they sprout.

Sue, Have you had much luck with growing butterfly bush from seed ?

~Iris

    Bookmark   January 31, 2009 at 10:53PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana(zone 5/6)

Sue, Have you had much luck with growing butterfly bush from seed ?
I have never tried to grow them from seed as I just bought them as plants and only really wanted or needed one of each variety. I have though found a few seedlings though where the seed had dropped and germinated. With bark mulch, and maybe even some 'old' Preen in the bed, they certainly were not planted under the best of conditions.

I have heard that they Winter Sow nicely. Since the seeds are so small, they should just be pressed lightly into the top of the soil.

hth.

Sue

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 12:00PM
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sundrops(Z6 SW Indiana)

Starting BB is a piece of cake. In fact, it has been my favorite seed starting adventure, with geraniums coming in second and I have grown thousands of plants from seed.

It is such a thrill to see a 5 foot bush growing and blooming in your yard knowing it came from a hair size seed, and all in one season.

It has been at least 8 years since I've started BB from seed and don't remember how deep to plant it if at all. If I remember correctly you just place them on top of the soil. Maybe someone here has done it more recently and can give better advise. However, it is very easy and you should really try it.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 1:18PM
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