The Q&A Archives: Best way to germinate seeds and transplant

Question: I have some stephanotus seeds (they were part of my wife's wedding bouquet) I would like to get them going this spring as a surprise for her. what is the best to start them and then place in a container. I live in Phoenix AZ. Thank you Shawn

Answer: What a wonderful idea! You can sow stephanotis seeds at any time of year 1/8in deep in well draining potting soil or seed starting mix. After planting, seal the pot in a plastic bag (to help hold in moisture) until germination which can take one to three months at 75-80F.

When the seeds sprout, remove the plastic bag and set the pot under a source of artificial light such as fluorescent shop lights, keeping the light source 2 inches above the seedlings. Move the lights up as the plants grow. Transplant the seedlings, when large enough to handle, into 3in pots and later plant in larger pots or tubs.

They need good light to bloom well so place in a bright window and syringe twice daily from spring to early autumn except when the plants are in flower. Give a winter temperature of 60F and a summer temperature of 80F. Prune in early spring by removing all weak growths and cutting back strong ones by at least half. Be sure to shade the plants from strong sun.

Best wishes with your project!

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