The Q&A Archives: Sowing Seeds

Question: I have the folowing seeds:
- Radermachera, Sinica. ( China Doll )
- Exacum affine
- Asarina, Purpusii
- Lobelia, erinus.
My question is, do I need to cover the seeds, or soak them before I sow them? Do you have any cultural information on these plants?

Answer: Exacum is dust-like and difficult to handle; sow on the surface of moistened seed starting mix but don't cover with additional soil. Seeds will germinate in 15-20 days when kept at 70F-75F. Another name for this plant is Persian Violet. It's a houseplant, or can be grown outdoors as a summer annual. Provide full to part shade and ample water.

Asarina also needs light to germinate; sow on the surface of moistened seed starting mix. Seedlings will appear in 7-30 days when kept at 60F-65F. This climbing or sprawling plant is grown as a summer annual in full sun to part afternoon shade, in average garden soil with regular water.

Lobelia has a pre-chill requirement prior to germination. Mix seeds with moistened growing medium, seal in a plastic bag, and refrigerate for 3 months. Then remove and sow on the surface of moistened seed starting mix. Seeds should sprout in 15-20 dasy when kept at 65F-75F. This plant grows outdoors under shady conditions and moist soil.

Radermachera needs light to germinate and will sprout in 15-30 days when kept at 65F-75F. This is a tender plant, generally grown indoors in bright light, misted occasionally, and given ample water.

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