Ask a Question forum: Propagating Baptisia by seeds

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Name: Carol H. Sandt
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
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Nov 15, 2016 1:41 PM CST
What is the best time of year to start Baptisia seeds indoors in zone 6b?

Any suggestions for success?

Here are the parent plants (the ones with blue flowers):

Thumb of 2016-11-15/csandt/172953

Carol H. Sandt

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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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Nov 15, 2016 9:36 PM CST
Hi Carol,

Baptista can be tricky but, here are a few suggestions:

Don't harvest the seed until the pods have turned dark and start to split. Immature seeds will not germinate or will germinate but will result in weak seedlings.

Plant immediately for best results. If you want to wait until spring, store them in the refrigerature for a couple months, then scarify and soak the seeds before planting.
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Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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Nov 15, 2016 9:51 PM CST
That sounds about right, mine come up as volunteers all over my garden in MN, I would imagine those are the exact conditions they unfortunately have to go through in 4B. Smiling I did give away lots of seeds to my volunteer garden group with not much luck for the group.
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Nov 19, 2016 9:31 PM CST
Hmmm -- I've started seeds from my Baptisia without any stratification or other special measures, just planted in potting soil in 6-packs; they did take a while to germinate, but otherwise no problems. Maybe I was just lucky?
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Name: Kent Pfeiffer
Southeast Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Plant Identifier Region: Nebraska Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Nov 20, 2016 10:16 AM CST

Plants Admin

Baptisias are fairly easy to grow from seed, without any special measures. The seeds will germinate much more quickly if you rub them with sandpaper before planting, though. One thing to keep mind, the seedlings will develop long tap roots soon after germination so you'll want to either use deep pots or transplant them into permanent spots outside around the time they produce their second set of true leaves.

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