Seeds forum: sinningia sellovii -- help needed!

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Name: Betsy
Texas (Zone 9a)
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piksihk
Apr 6, 2014 3:44 PM CST
These came wrapped in a paper towel. They were so tiny, couldn't tell whether they were seeds or chaffs, so I thought to self: wet the paper towel and see what happens.
Well, tiny, and I mean tiny, tiny seedlings have appeared and I'm baffled as to how to gently remove them and pot them up. Tweezers? Any suggestions?

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Name: Danita
GA (Zone 7b)
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Danita
Apr 6, 2014 6:01 PM CST
How sturdy is the paper towel? If 2-ply, can you very carefully remove the bottom layer of the paper towel without harming the seedlings that are sitting on the top layer or have they rooted through the paper towel? If you can remove the bottom layer without harming them, you might try that and then just place the paper towel layer with the seedlings on some new soilless potting mix. Then spritz them with a fine mist of water from a spray bottle to help the paper towel make good contact with the potting mix. I'm thinking the paper towel should start dissolving with a few waterings. If the seedlings are far enough apart then you could cut the paper towel up into pieces to help spread them out a bit.

You can always try removing a few of the seedlings from the paper towel to separate pots first. Then when you've transplanted enough of them that you've gone cross-eyed, you could try putting the rest on the potting mix still on the paper towel. If they germinated like mine did, you'll never be able to pot all of them up individually because there will be hundreds. Trying multiple ways should increase your odds of succeeding with some, at least.

They really are tiny seedlings so what I did was just to let them fight it out until they started forming small tubers after a few months and then separated the tubers. You don't save every seedling that way but you will still end up with a lot.

If you succeed in growing them out and collect seeds one day, I've found that folded pieces of white tissue paper work well for holding the seeds. Then I put the tissue paper in a tiny plastic baggie or other small envelope. Don't put seeds directly in the plastic because they will static cling themselves onto it and hold on for dear life! Hilarious!
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
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Leftwood
Apr 6, 2014 6:15 PM CST
Well I was going to say basically the same thing, but Danita beat me to it:
Snip the paper towel into small pieces and plant the seeds in little groups? Perhaps barely cover them with a small size vermiculite. Let the seed grow roots through the paper towel to the media below. I did this once with Deinanthe caerulea, when I thought the tiny seeds were toast since they had dried out. I worked so-so, but I later found out how finicky this particular species seedlings are. Communicating with some experts, next time I am going to grow them in a close jar for months (!). My experience with Synningia pusilla leads me to believe that you will have a much easier time.

But paper towels don't disintegrate that quickly. Unless you meant to say toilet tissue. (When a previous poster did that, it really confused us all.)
Name: Betsy
Texas (Zone 9a)
Christmas time is here!
Region: Texas Daylilies Native Plants and Wildflowers Amaryllis Cottage Gardener Container Gardener
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piksihk
Apr 7, 2014 2:50 PM CST
The paper towel is the type that is thicker - but I will cut them apart and place in pots with dusting of vermiculite.
Thanks, Danita & Rick!
God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars. ~Author unknown, commonly attributed to Martin Luther
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
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kqcrna
Apr 7, 2014 4:05 PM CST

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I'm rarely successful with that process. My hands are just too clumsy! Hilarious! That's why I've pretty much given up on the Deno method.

Karen
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
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Leftwood
Apr 7, 2014 9:08 PM CST
Yes, I look at the Deno method of using moist paper towels as good for experimenting or testing, but not so great if your aim is to continue growing the seedlings on.
Name: Betsy
Texas (Zone 9a)
Christmas time is here!
Region: Texas Daylilies Native Plants and Wildflowers Amaryllis Cottage Gardener Container Gardener
Lilies Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Bulbs Plant and/or Seed Trader Clematis
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piksihk
Apr 9, 2014 9:26 AM CST
OK, cut the paper into pieces last Sunday and placed in container of vermiculite; covered lightly and spritzed with water. Then placed a lid over the container. Today, I see many seedlings still alive; spritzed with water again and placed new east window.
God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars. ~Author unknown, commonly attributed to Martin Luther

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