from seed and new little plants in CA

deep___roots(ca9/sunset15)July 21, 2009

I have questions about seed starting and care of the sprouts.

I acquire seeds from mature seed pods. The varieties are usually Mexican in origin (both red & blue flowered varieties). Once seed pods give up the seeds, are these seeds ready to be sown?

I have good germination, usually above 50 percent, when I do the "collect and immediately sow" thing.

Then, once I have little plants I pot them up in well-draining potting mix with some extra perlite added and water when necessary. They seem to be growing slowly though. I grow them in sun but with window screens providing some relief from the direct sun since they are babies. They do branch after I pinch but the leaves are small and growth seems slow.

Are they just slow to grow naturally? Am I out of season?

Things don't look bad, but I wonder if anyone has any tips to help me get these to thrive. Or any comments on my methods.

I do have some nice s. rubesens that I grew from seed several years ago.

Thanks for your consideration. Cheers!

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rich_dufresne(z7 NC)

Fully ripened Salvia seed is either dark brown or black. It may be glossy or tuberculate (tiny depressions on the seed coat) The seed should be fat, and slightly shrunken when dried. I usually let them dry out for a few weeks before sowing.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 1:55PM
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But, ripe seeds from certain Oriental hybrids are often light brown!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 4:28PM
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Sorry, meant to say species, not hybrids.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 4:33PM
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The thing that takes the longest is getting the root system
established.Once that happens your seedlings should grow
nicely. It also depends on which species you grow the tropical species like the warmth and cooler weather species
the opposite for growing conditions.I use a fertilizer that is higher in phosphorus(P) to help get the roots set. Then
once that occurs start pinching and putting on a more nitrogen(N) based fert. to push out growth.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 7:35PM
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