How long for seeds to germinate?

anthony_torontoMarch 28, 2007

Had a few hard to get seeds this year that have not germinated. Looking at this year and looking back on the prior 2 years, I cannot recall any of my seeds germinating after 7 days...anything that was going to germinate did so within 2 to 7 days of planting. I have seen people talk about it taking 10 days to 2 weeks or more for some seeds to germinate, but even though I continued my attempts to make the laggers do something, I have had 0% luck after 7 days. Thoughts?

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Wait another week.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 8:37PM
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well most of mine took 7-9 days this year. ive seen some come up in 4, 2 sounds crazy. anyway what are your conditions ? ive posted in other threads the single biggest issue ive found was soil temp. the moment i went from 70deg or so to 85-90deg the plants started really popping up. some may recommend using a wet paper towel to presprout em. let us know what your setup is and im sure someone will have suggestions. also when your say "hard to get" could the seeds also be older as well?

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 9:03PM
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I've seen them pop anywhere from 5 days to 2 weeks. Bottom heat seems to help a lot in speeding things up.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 10:09PM
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Anthony, Ill try to help ya out...
I germ mine with scotts seed starter, and peat moss+vermiculie solution. Basicaly just nice fluffy dirt.

In cell packs (not Peat pods) put them on top of your fridge where it is warm a plastic lid on top, to hold in water (humidity) and mist those cell packs twice a day. When you get up.....and before Ya go to bed! You know.... with a little windex-type spray bottle......

Most quality seeds will germinate after 3-5 days. If they dont germinate, well... try another seed company.

My favorite for germination.....hands-down..."Totally-Tomatoes" Bought some in Feb....every, single seed has germinated thus far......

Its not too late just Google them and Good garden to Ya!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 10:21PM
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Not only did I wait another week, I probably waited 3.5 weeks in total (last year and the year before...up to 2.5 weeks total as of today), and over the last 3 years, of all the seeds that did not germinate between day 2 and 7, exactly 0% of those ungerminated seeds germinated between day 7 and day 25. I did have excellent success with most seeds, 100% or one seed short of 100% for most (in cases in which I did 4 to 8 seeds), but others performed much worse...was really wondering if there is a point waiting because from my (admittedly short) experience I have found that there is little point...which is unfortunate because those hard-to-get seeds that I acquired are at 12.5% germination (1 of 8), just planted another 2 of each, will see what happens. Seeds from had the most success for me...seeds from other companies were far less succesful.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 11:44PM
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I start my tomato seeds inside of a wet paper towel in a ziplock bag like ecoberryfarm mentioned. They seem to sprout a lot quicker that way. You also know which seeds are actually going to grow that way.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 11:20AM
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I sowed Monday night. Where are my seedlings?!!!!!

Just kidding. Yeah, takes a week more or less.

Wanted to add that one year I left the 6-packs I sowed that hadn't germinated on the deck under a shade cloth. When the temps got real warm outside, I had germination, even a month later. So they do want to grow. Sometimes we fuss and worry too much about it. Basic conditions being right for germination help a lot.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 12:13PM
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daddylonglegs(z5 WI)

I'm going to chime in here because I think you guys might be right. I'm having terrible luck this year. Just grow lights keeping the trays at 80F, no heat mat. Something killed the first batch. Of the second batch, the few that have come up are quite weak, so I think I need to try some bottom heat next year. But I think if they don't come up in at least 10 days under those conditions, they aren't going to.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 1:23PM
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Though new to germinating seeds, I'll put my 2 cents in here, even though this thread is a month old now.

I haven't seen anyone in this thread mention that germination times are species dependant. There are some seeds that may take months to germinate, while others pop up in just a couple days.

Why the differences?

Faster germinating seeds are often cultured that way by man. For example, California Poppy Seeds are naturally a bit stubborn to germinate and wait on specific climatic, seasonal and soil conditions to occur. But selectivity by human harvesters who can't wait for a plant to grow produces seed yields from cultured plants that progressively germinate quicker and quicker. If you look on the web, you'll see eco-friendly types warning not to plant cultured poppy seeds in or near the natural habitat of wild poppy because crossing the strains will weaken the wild strain and cause it one day to mostly germinate at a time when the stress hormone levels should have prevented it, causing the population and even the strain itself to crash.

Wild seeds therefore or seeds of tropicals or nearly wild plants are harder to germinate. Other seeds need special cues, stratification, even direct sunlight before they pop. Patience is a virtue in such cases and it's best to read about the seeds your are trying to germ and learn from those who have already studied and dealt with them. There may in fact, be special procedures which will fake out the seeds stress mechanisms and bring them to quicker germination, including stuff to reduce abscisic acid and promote auxins and other hormones which induce germination and growth.

I've planted a lot of different seeds and many pop right away, while others defy the season. It's very frustrating. Luckily there are alternatives. Heliconias for example, are difficult to propogate from seed, but easy to propogate by division of rhizomes.

My advice ... enter the name of the plant whose seed you want to germinate into your browser's search window followed by the word propogation and hit 'go'. Then read and heed!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2007 at 7:54PM
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Keep them warm and moist, it helps a lot as mentioned above. I have found that some varieties just take longer than others. Some come up stronger with bigger, sturdier plants, some pretty wimpy. Patience if a virtue in sprouting seeds.
Bill P.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2007 at 10:16PM
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I've posted an observation and an after thought on my final successful germination of Canna x generalis seeds in the Canna Forum.

You might want to read those posts. It does require a wee bit more than just patience to germinate seeds. You've got to provide what they need, including ... time.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2007 at 6:25PM
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