The Q&A Archives: Sequoiadendron Giganteum

Question: My question is about how to best germinate a giant sequoia seed?

Answer: Cover seeds with only their own depth of soil mix or fine grit. Apply bottom heat of 59 Degrees F. to hasten seed germination. The seedlings are vulnerable to damping off, which is a fungal condition. It is best to store seeds in a refrigerator.

If your seedlings started out okay and then fell over, it could mean overwatering or a fungal disease called damping off. It quickly spreads through the flats killing the young seedling by causing the stems to rot. It occurs when a non-sterile medium is used for seed starting, containers used for seed starting are not sterile, seeds are sown too deeply, or seeds become too moist. Damping off will cause germination to not occur or may kill tiny seedlings. Always start new seeds in sterilized flats with commercially prepared seed-starting mix and keep the soil moist but not soggy wet. Also provide good air circulation among seedlings; don?t plant too closely.

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