The Q&A Archives: Germinating Abutilon

Question: I have some abutilon seeds and was wondering what is the ideal time to germinate them and under what conditions. Should the plants be transplanted into the ground or should they be grown in pots? Are they hardy to Zone 8? Do they like sun or shade?

Answer: Seeds of Abutilon, also known as Flowering Maple because of the appearance of its leaves, like moderate temperatures for germination and growth. You can sow them now or during the winter months if you have a bright indoor location for the seedlings. Seeds will germinate in about 2 weeks under ideal conditions.

In spring the seedlings can be transplanted to an outdoor location. Although they are tolerant of some shade, I would recommend you give the plants at least four hours of direct sunlight a day. Container growing is possible provided the container is at least as large as a half whiskey barrel. Otherwise, plant them out in the landscape. Another option is to wait until danger of frost is mostly past and then plant the seeds directly into their outdoor growing location. This would be about mid-April for your area.

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