Seeds forum: can anyone explain the "oven method" of germinating seeds?

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Name: Gloria Gerritz
Floyd, VA
Elfie4ever
Jun 10, 2010 5:09 AM CST
I only read about this once, and the person could not explain it to the
point where I could understand it. It seems to be about turning the oven on then off and getting the seeds hot.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
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kqcrna
Jun 10, 2010 5:00 PM CST

Moderator

I never heard of that. I think I would be afraid of cooking the seeds!

Karen
Name: Franklin Troiso
Rutland, MA (Zone 5b)
Life is to short to eat rice cakes
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herbie43
Jun 13, 2010 4:32 PM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

i've been starting seeds for over 20 years and that is the first time i have heard of that are you sure the person wasn't talking about sterlizing the seed starting mix before planting the seeds in it.

some people put the mixture in the microwave and i guess thee stove will work also just to get rid any bactaria that might be in the mixture.

Name: Gloria Gerritz
Floyd, VA
Elfie4ever
Jun 13, 2010 6:54 PM CST
No, it was seeds in the oven! They didn't stay there very long (just long enough to scare the dickens out of them.)
Name: Franklin Troiso
Rutland, MA (Zone 5b)
Life is to short to eat rice cakes
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herbie43
Jun 14, 2010 6:23 AM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

thats a new one for me. let me chick a few hings out and get back to you.

Name: Emily
Mid-Cape Cod, MA. zone 7a
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CapeCodGardener
Jun 14, 2010 6:23 AM CST
LOL!

I found this on Idigmygarden.com. I think it's just another way to add some warmth while the seeds germinate. In this case, the writer was talking about tomato seeds.

"If you have an older oven with a pilot light, then just start your seeds in there- I do start in peat pellets and then cover the whole container in plastic wrap, pop into the oven and then just check them each and every day till they sprout then I take them out and take the plastic off. I find that warmth really does help.
If your newer oven has a light bulb, keeping it on will warm the oven well too.
Just don't forget to take them if you're gonna make dinner in the oven!"
Name: Gloria Gerritz
Floyd, VA
Elfie4ever
Jun 14, 2010 6:37 AM CST
Thanks, Cape Cod Gardener, I knew there was something too it. So a bulb will do the same thing so electric ovens could work too. Very interesting.
Name: Franklin Troiso
Rutland, MA (Zone 5b)
Life is to short to eat rice cakes
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herbie43
Jun 14, 2010 7:46 AM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

this is what i got from the internet

Dry Heat: The seeds are baked dry in an oven at 140° to 220°F for 4 - 10 hours, or are microwaved for 30 seconds to 4 minutes. Gives erratic results.
Sulfuric acid or lye soaks work with some seeds.

this is just a small paragraph of a huge article about starting seeds and the numerous methods of doing it. if you want to see the whole article let me know.

if you are talking about vegetable, the only seeds that really need bottom heat are eggplants, and peppers. toamtoes do not need the bottom heat. a simply 20 or 30 dollar heat mat will do the trick also.

Name: Emily
Mid-Cape Cod, MA. zone 7a
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CapeCodGardener
Jun 14, 2010 9:05 AM CST
My goodness, I would THINK that baking the seeds might give erratic results.
. . but there are doubtless some seeds that DO need heat. I know that in my old stomping-grounds in Monterey, CA, the pine cones and some other natives' seeds often needed a forest fire to start germination!
That's interesting, Frank; I thought tomato seeds needed bottom heat too. But I'm not scientific enough--I put everything on heat mats, and then if some of the seeds don't germinate too well, I'm surprised! I do know that seed packets and other seed-listings (Parks, and Stokes I think) give optimum temperatures for germination. I should probably follow these more rigorously.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
Echinacea Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Ohio Region: United States of America Butterflies Hummingbirder
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kqcrna
Jun 14, 2010 10:57 AM CST

Moderator

Me too, but I tend to fly by the seat of my pants. I guess I'm lucky because even with my casual attitude most things work OK. It shows that seeds are programmed to sprout by nature, despite pathetic efforts to prevent it by human intervention.

Emily, how did your new light shelving work out for you? Are you happy with it?

Karen
Name: Emily
Mid-Cape Cod, MA. zone 7a
Charter ATP Member
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CapeCodGardener
Jun 14, 2010 12:04 PM CST
Karen, I have to say that my new shelving worked out very well (T-5, Three Tier SunLite system from Gardener's Supply.) Maybe because I put the unit out on my heated sunporch, right off the living room, rather than in the basement as previously. Because of the nearness of this location I tended to check my seedling trays more often and be aware if more or less moisture, etc., was needed, or if seedlings really needed to be transplanted to a next-size pot. And the reason I put the SunLite system there was because it was attractive enough to be in the "viewshed" from my living room!
I still used my basement el cheapo shelving from Home Depot strung with shoplights for the seedlings that were moved up into pots but not yet able to brave the rigors of outside. These particular shelves are deeper (24-in) than the 15-inch deep SunLite shelving and they could hold several trays of the potted-up seedlings at once.
In fact, one could arguably say that the new light-shelving worked all too well, since I ended up with more seedlings than ever and am still finding places for them all! Coleus, anyone?
Name: Franklin Troiso
Rutland, MA (Zone 5b)
Life is to short to eat rice cakes
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herbie43
Jun 14, 2010 2:02 PM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

actually, there are some things that you should do when you start seeds indoors. i am talking striclty vegetable seeds as i never grow flowers from seeds.

heat - like i said before. toamtoes do not need bottom heat but if you do it, it won't harm them. (when i fist started growing seeds i used a heating blanket which i got for our wedding and never used) to heat my seeds. did that for maybe 10 years without a proboem. then someone told me on DG that i might be taking a chabnge with something that old so i stopped using it.

i didn't want to buy heat mats so i took a nice warm blanket put it on the floor of my living room, put the seed tray on top and then the dome or plastic wrap to cover the seeds and then another blanket on top. never had a problem with either method.

light - vegetable seeds need 16 or 17 hours of light a day. sitting them on a window sill will not be enough light. even a sun room is not enough.

after the plants get their second set of leaves, then it's time to place them in a cooler location. vegetable plants germnate best at about 75 to 80 degrees (some hot peppers need 90 degress and thats where heat mats come in) but after that the plants grow best at 60 degrees except for the peppers and eggplants.

i used to take my tomatoes etc and put them into my unheated basement with grow lights over them until it was time to harden them off.

now that i have my mini greenhouse in my computer room i don't have that trouble because now when the plants need the cooler temps i can just open a window a bit.

a fan - it is always good to have a fan lightly blowing on your plants after they get there second set of leaves. it stimulates grown and makes the stems stronger. you can also shake them wiith your hands for the same effect. the fan only hasto stay on a few mnutes each day.

sorry about rambling on and i know everyone hast heir own method to start seeds and there sure is more than a dozen different way to do it but that is how i do it.



Name: Gloria Gerritz
Floyd, VA
Elfie4ever
Jun 14, 2010 2:59 PM CST
Elda Haring's old book "Plants from Seeds" was my Bible for years along with Park Seed's center page of germination times and temps, etc. I have always had shop lights somewhere in the house. Right now, I use
an area in the laundry room which is very convenient for checking moisture and such.

I have started my second batch of seedlings; I think I could even do a third before the first frost. But, my heavens, what would I do with all of them? I am a flower grower; however, the economy may soon turn me into a vegetable grower.


I just love to start seeds. It is such fun seeing them come to life and grow. I really don't use anything special like heat mats. I do love winter sowing because there is almost no work involved once the cartons are prepped and filled with soil and then seeds.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
Echinacea Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Ohio Region: United States of America Butterflies Hummingbirder
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kqcrna
Jun 14, 2010 4:06 PM CST

Moderator

I'm with you there, Gloria. I wintersow all my hardy plants, and some fast-growing annuals, too. I only start a few heat loving annual seeds under lights to get some color in the garden earlier. I only have a small lighted shelf space, and I use it more for propagating cuttings than seed starting.

Karen
Name: Emily
Mid-Cape Cod, MA. zone 7a
Charter ATP Member
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CapeCodGardener
Jun 15, 2010 8:01 AM CST
"now that i have my mini greenhouse in my computer room i don't have that trouble because now when the plants need the cooler temps i can just open a window a bit."
Frank, I'm intrigued: How do the seedlings inside the mini-greenhouse get their light? Do you have grow-lights above this in the computer room?

"I have started my second batch of seedlings; I think I could even do a third before the first frost"
Gloria, what sort of seeds do you start for your second/third batch? I've never done seed-starting after my first fine flush of enthusiasm in the late winter/early spring!
Name: Gloria Gerritz
Floyd, VA
Elfie4ever
Jun 15, 2010 9:08 AM CST
Cape Cod, I start things that catch my eye; I am starting campanula Telham Beauty because the flowers are on thin stems and seem to float
above the other flowers. I am starting a yarrow mix that promises some
lavender or purple (I don't have any yarrow.) When I look at books or look at what others have planted, I get ideas I haven't had before.
Name: Franklin Troiso
Rutland, MA (Zone 5b)
Life is to short to eat rice cakes
Charter ATP Member
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herbie43
Jun 15, 2010 3:56 PM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

i attached two - two foot long shop lights with grow bulbs underneath each shelf
with the ability to lower and raise them as needed.

Name: John Yeoman
Leighton Buzzard
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JohnYeoman
Jan 20, 2011 10:54 AM CST
Putting seeds in the oven seems like a foolproof way to kill them! Few seed will stay viable at a temperature above 95°F - and few ovens will reliably keep a low temperature, even with the door open.

It's true that some tricky seeds like parsley can be shocked into life eg. by immersion in bleach. But the only foolproof way to start almost any seed is to put it in a margarine tub of damp perlite or white sand, with the lid on, for seven days in a temperature of 75°-80°F.

That will sprout anything, even parsley, with the exception of coconuts. They have to float in the sea for three years Rolling my eyes.

I think that roasting seed in the oven is one of those 'never tried' tips that are best forgotten.
The Gardening Guild. The center for natural gardening ideas: http://www.gardeningguild.org/help
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hummingbirder Region: New Jersey Dog Lover
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Onewish1
Jan 20, 2011 5:07 PM CST

Moderator

is that how long a coconut takes????? Blinking
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
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RickCorey
Jul 12, 2011 9:55 PM CST
Some people like to soak big seeds in water (warm or room temperature).

With a little hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) in it -
1 1/2 teaspoon of 3% hydrogen peroxide per cup.

That sure helped me start Salvia seeds! They swelled up with some kind of gel layer, like frogs' eggs, and almost all sprouted very quickly.

I don't really know if the H2O2 does anything beyond discourage fungus, but it might. It seemd to work just as well on salvia when I had no H2O2.

To enhance the effect of a heating mat, add insulation under it so all the heat is directed upwards. I found 2'x2' sheets of drywall (gypsum) at Home Depot for less than $5, I think it was. Of course, any kind of tent over it to keep the warm air in will help even more. But doing this in a warm room may hold in TOO much heat.

Corey

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