Daylilies forum→LA seed questions

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Name: Janet
NW IN (Zone 5b)
Soli
Aug 28, 2021 10:21 AM CST
Hi, I'm new to the forum although I have lurked for awhile sucking up info. Smiling I have a bunch of OLD daylily varieties for whom I have lost their ID and have just started accumulating some named new varieties (and labeled them!). I also made my first crosses in 2019 and had my first bloom this summer. I harvested my seed, kept them room temp and dry until ready to start germination in January at which time I put them in moist potting soil and refrigerated for 4 weeks, then put under lights and achieved 100% germination. So my first question is: why do all the LA sellers state that they have chilled their seed? What purpose does this serve if the buyer does not plan to germinate immediately? I've noticed a lot of northern members. What is your sowing timing etc? Also, I just made my first LA seed purchase and when the seeds arrived yesterday several were already sprouted in the plastic envelope. So next question is what do I do with the sprouted seed in August? Do all sellers ship in plastic? Seems like paper would run less risk of condensation or is the goal to keep the seed moist? Lots of questions because this is all new to me. Thanks for any help!
Name: Orion
Boston, MA (Zone 6b)
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plasko20
Aug 28, 2021 11:00 AM CST
I have only ever had seeds in plastic dime bags. Would be shocked if they come any other way.
I have had seeds arrived germinated through the mail. I potted them up right away. Kept them indoors all winter long under grow lights (mine came November).
Pre-chilled I see as a courtesy. Saves time chilling them yourself. Sellers sell to people in the south as well as north, the seeds all have to be the same for everyone.
I guess that question is the same as "why do stores sell beer pre-chilled if you are not going to drink it all right away"? Because it is a courtesy for those thirsty people that want to crack it open right away, while making no difference to those that want to save it in their own fridge.
I also have seeds arriving this week and was shocked at the reverse - the seller only had chilled them for 2 weeks! Now I will have to chill them another 2 before I can do anything with them. Crying
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
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Seedfork
Aug 28, 2021 11:05 AM CST
Soli, Welcome!
Name: Janet
NW IN (Zone 5b)
Soli
Aug 28, 2021 1:50 PM CST
Orion, I thank you for answering all of my questions. I will go ahead and pot the sprouted seed up and keep them under lights. As I said, this was all new to me so both the plastic and the sprouts were a surprise. I'm used to dry seed in paper packets with pictures on them and labels that say things such as "Delphinium" or "Foxglove". 😀 But I certainly like my beer cold so I will be grateful for pre chilled seeds.
Name: Greg Bogard
Winston-Salem, NC (Zone 7a)
Sscape
Aug 28, 2021 1:56 PM CST
Generally, the more dormant the parents in the cross, the more they need chilling, and vice-versa. However, the reason I refrigerate my seeds immediately after harvest/drying is that it improves germination. I have successfully germinated daylily seeds that were refrigerated for five years. If you start your own tomatoes each year from seed, put the remaining seeds in the refrigerator. You can even keep them in the freezer. Refrigerated tomato seeds will germinate even after nine years in the cooler. With today's price of seeds--it is well worth the space in the crisper drawer.
Name: pam
gainesville fl (Zone 8b)
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gardenglory
Aug 28, 2021 2:02 PM CST
That is encouraging about the old seeds. Cant say Ive frozen seeds, just pollen.
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Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4b)
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sooby
Aug 28, 2021 2:19 PM CST
@Soli To answer one of your questions, there seems to be a lot of confusion between storing seeds in the fridge to improve longevity until ready to start them, and stratification which is chilling under damp conditions to break seed dormancy (which can apply to seeds of any foliage type). I know that some people think just putting them in the fridge dry achieves the latter but it actually doesn't. If it seems to it may be that their seeds did not have seed dormancy in the first place.

But I've several times read of people putting their daylily seeds dry in the fridge for a few weeks thinking it does something, yet the seeds still take weeks to germinate after coming out of the fridge and planting. What that means is that they did not achieve the purpose of breaking seed dormancy, likely because the seeds were refrigerated dry.

You do not need to stratify (damp chill) daylily seeds if your daylily seeds do not normally have seed dormancy or if you don't care how long they take to germinate. The purpose of stratification is to have them all germinate at once within a couple of weeks or so instead of strung out with some germinating right away and some taking much longer. There is no need to refrigerate daylily seeds dry except for storage if you aren't yet ready to start them.

There is an article about stratification on Rich Howard's website here:

http://ctdaylily.com/files/Str...
Name: pam
gainesville fl (Zone 8b)
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gardenglory
Aug 29, 2021 7:20 AM CST
Gosh, all Ive ever done all these years is refrigerate for 3 weeks to 10 years Whistling then plant.
Knowledge makes people humble, Arrogance makes people ignorant.
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4b)
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sooby
Aug 29, 2021 7:33 AM CST
gardenglory said:Gosh, all Ive ever done all these years is refrigerate for 3 weeks to 10 years Whistling then plant.


If they all germinate within a couple of weeks after planting then you most likely don't even need to refrigerate for 3 weeks (assuming you mean dry refrigeration rather than stratification).

Name: Ed Burton
East Central Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
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EdBurton
Aug 29, 2021 9:54 AM CST
As a seed seller we refrigerate seed so the buyer can plant the same day they get them.

Seeds sprouted in the bags, most likely they weren't dried long enough, or are evergreen.
There is a fine line when drying, I don't like to dry them until they shrivel, but I do want them to be dry enough but not need a month or more to hydrate and sprout.
I see some seeds that I know were dry just start growing on there own in late winter, I always give the buyer the option to cancel but the majority will except knowing the seeds are viable and eager.


Ed Burton

seed seller "gramps"
[Last edited by EdBurton - Aug 29, 2021 9:58 AM (+)]
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Name: Zoia Bologovsky
Stoneham MA (Zone 6a)
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Zoia
Aug 29, 2021 10:12 AM CST
I have a seed question. Once you plant your seeds indoors, in cups or trays or cells, do you water them from above or below? As in, pouring water into the tray for the soil to absorb upwards or water normally downwards?
Name: Ed Burton
East Central Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
Hybridizing, Lily Auction seed sell
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EdBurton
Aug 29, 2021 2:17 PM CST
Zoia said:I have a seed question. Once you plant your seeds indoors, in cups or trays or cells, do you water them from above or below? As in, pouring water into the tray for the soil to absorb upwards or water normally downwards?


I water from below, but I do mist the seedlings daily if I can
Ed Burton

seed seller "gramps"

Eagleriver
Aug 29, 2021 3:14 PM CST
And how do you know how much in the way of grow lights they need?
Name: Orion
Boston, MA (Zone 6b)
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plasko20
Aug 30, 2021 3:05 PM CST
Eagleriver said:And how do you know how much in the way of grow lights they need?


Someone on this website reported the nice big light she was using, on a seed thread earlier this year. It seemed like a powerful light. The reason I recall it was that she had scapes and flowers at a very very early stage of growth. This is what got me initially interested in speeding up daylily flowering. But I recall her plants looking stunning with thick long leaves and a huge root system. She reported all her conditions on that thread. I tried to find it here, justnow, but had no luck. Perhaps someone else can recall.
Gardening: So exciting I wet my plants!
Name: Zoia Bologovsky
Stoneham MA (Zone 6a)
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Zoia
Aug 30, 2021 8:45 PM CST
I remember that too which inspired me to buy a dedicated grow light stand. It should be coming in the mail any time now.

I don't think you can overflight Daylilies. Although I will put them on a timer so they can get used to a diurnal world. That's right, isn't it? You don't keep them lit all the time?
Name: Mike
Hazel Crest, IL (Zone 5b)
"Have no patience for bare ground"
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Hazelcrestmikeb
Aug 30, 2021 9:29 PM CST
The general rule on lighting is sixteen on and eight off. Depending on the intensity of the light, the closer to the plant the better to prevent the plant from reaching for the light and getting leggy.
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Name: Maurice
Grey County, Ontario (Zone 4b)
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admmad
Sep 2, 2021 5:38 PM CST
It is difficult to give daylilies too much light indoors; too high a temperature is a different matter. Light fixtures that produce more light also tend to run hotter. Temperatures between 65F and 75F are good.

I am using six led tubes each four feet long and each producing 6000 lumens (total 36,000 lumens) over an area that measures 3 by 4 feet with mature daylily plants rather than seedlings. As a guideline both 'Stella de Oro' and 'Happy Returns' have three to four bloom cycles in seven months under those lights. Others such as 'Ming Porcelain', 'Ida's Magic', 'Court Magician', 'Angel's Smile', 'Mississippi Bill Robinson', 'Crystal Blue Persuasion', etc. only have one bloom cycle during the same period.
Maurice
Name: Orion
Boston, MA (Zone 6b)
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plasko20
Sep 3, 2021 9:17 AM CST
admmad said:It is difficult to give daylilies too much light indoors; too high a temperature is a different matter. Light fixtures that produce more light also tend to run hotter. Temperatures between 65F and 75F are good.

I am using six led tubes each four feet long and each producing 6000 lumens (total 36,000 lumens) over an area that measures 3 by 4 feet with mature daylily plants rather than seedlings. As a guideline both 'Stella de Oro' and 'Happy Returns' have three to four bloom cycles in seven months under those lights. Others such as 'Ming Porcelain', 'Ida's Magic', 'Court Magician', 'Angel's Smile', 'Mississippi Bill Robinson', 'Crystal Blue Persuasion', etc. only have one bloom cycle during the same period.


That sounds amazing. If I may ask a few quick questions:
(1) How many hours per day do you illuminate your mature daylilies using these lamps? What general distance from the lamps are the daylilies?
(2) What wavelengths do the LEDs emit? Full-spectrum, or something more specific?
(3) Have you ever tried to set seed-pods on the indoor-blooming daylilies? If so, were you successful in getting viable seeds?
(4) Is the temperature constant for your daylilies, or would it fluctuate? (in my case the house reduces the temperature when I leave for work which would be lower than the 65F for several hours per day, as an energy-saver. However, the seedlings are on heat-mats 24/7 which would off-set that decrease a little bit).

Many thanks.
Gardening: So exciting I wet my plants!
Name: Maurice
Grey County, Ontario (Zone 4b)
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admmad
Sep 3, 2021 2:20 PM CST
plasko20 said:That sounds amazing. If I may ask a few quick questions:
(1) How many hours per day do you illuminate your mature daylilies using these lamps? What general distance from the lamps are the daylilies?


With this light setup the lights were on 24 hours at first but I found that the daylilies started to have yellowing leaves so I gave them a 4 hour night with a 20 hour day. No more yellowing leaves.

With a previous setup, using three 2200 lumen led four foot bulbs per 12 square foot space (3 ft x 4 ft) the lights were on 24 hours and the plants did not get yellowing leaves.

The distance between the lights and the daylily leaves has varied. Most of the time the lights are just above the top of the leaves (with some leaf tips getting burned). At other times the lights are 6" to 10" from the leaves.
(2) What wavelengths do the LEDs emit? Full-spectrum, or something more specific?

One set of lights were specifically plant growth lights. They are "full spectrum", not rated for lumens but each tube produces 220 umol./m. squared/s at 8" ppfd. The other set of lights were 5000K "daylight".
(3) Have you ever tried to set seed-pods on the indoor-blooming daylilies? If so, were you successful in getting viable seeds?

Yes, I did try to set pods on some of the cultivars. They successfully set pods and matured seeds. I have not attempted to germinate any of those seeds. They seemed normal when the pods were shelled. I grow daylilies inside for reasons other than hybridizing so none of the crosses produced seeds that I am particularly interested in germinating. I'm not sure I kept the seeds (or if I did keep them, where I stored them).
(4) Is the temperature constant for your daylilies, or would it fluctuate?

The temperature for the house is set to be lower at night than during the day time. The base temperature for where the plants are is 16C at night and 19C during the day. When the lights are on the temperatures the plants experience is higher.


Maurice
Name: Orion
Boston, MA (Zone 6b)
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plasko20
Sep 3, 2021 2:27 PM CST
Great! Thanks for the very detailed response. That will help a lot with my winter plans.
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