Daylilies forum: Seed Germination Question

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Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
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blue23rose
Dec 28, 2017 5:55 PM CST
I recently was mailed some seeds and put them in the fridge because I wanted to plant them outdoors in the spring. But yesterday I noticed that they are germinating. Now I am thinking I will have to go ahead and put them in potting soil and let them grow jnside the house over winter. Anyone have this happen before and if so what did you do?
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown
Name: Diana
Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Nebraska Organic Gardener Dog Lover Bookworm
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ShakespearesGarden
Dec 28, 2017 11:09 PM CST
Vickie, the advice that I got was to let them be til later in the season. I have a few that have sprouted in the fridge this season and I don't have good enough grow lights to pot them up....
Scout's motto: Be Prepared...
Name: Greg Bogard
Winston-Salem, NC (Zone 7a)
Sscape
Dec 29, 2017 7:56 AM CST
Hey Vickie,
If you can pot them up now and grow them under lights/or in a South window (or both)---that would be the best thing to do. In plastic baggies in the refrigerator, they would dry out and injure the root system of the seedlings. Also, once the seed cap is shed, they need light for photosynthesis to produce the food they would need to continue growth. They grow to that point using food stored in the seeds. However, once that is gone, they need green leaves to carry on.
The seeds sprout in the bag if there is too much moisture. In the future: if there is visible moisture in them when you get them--turn them out onto clean typing (inkjet) paper and let them dry an hour or two. Then, when you put them back in the baggie to go back in the refrig---put a dry piece of that same paper measuring approx. 1.5" x 3" in the bag with them. The paper will sop up any more water the seeds give off, but then will give off that moisture as the environment dries. That will keep the seeds in good shape for months, and improve germination when it comes time to plant.
Hope this helps---Good luck in this promising New Year.
Name: Diana
Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Nebraska Organic Gardener Dog Lover Bookworm
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ShakespearesGarden
Dec 29, 2017 9:31 AM CST
Looks like I'm gonna have to figure out grow lights...
Scout's motto: Be Prepared...
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
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blue23rose
Dec 29, 2017 1:47 PM CST
Thanks, Diana and Greg. I guess I will get the grow light out and pot them up. I just hope that most or all of them survive.
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown
Name: Ashton & Terry
Jones, OK (Zone 7a)
Windswept Farm & Gardens
Hostas Lilies Hybridizer Keeps Sheep Pollen collector Irises
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kidfishing
Dec 29, 2017 7:22 PM CST
They don't need that much light to survive. When I had just a few seedlings sprouted indoors, I put them near an east window. They only got morning sunlight and did just fine all winter. Any winndow where they can get a little sunlight should keep them going. The more hours of light the faster growth.
Kidfishing
Name: Diana
Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Nebraska Organic Gardener Dog Lover Bookworm
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ShakespearesGarden
Dec 30, 2017 9:49 AM CST
Thanks for the hope! Looks I have fun plans today.
Scout's motto: Be Prepared...
Name: Jackie
Lake Lanier, GA (Heat Zone 7) (Zone 7b)
☺ I love flowers!! ☺
Daylilies Dahlias Hibiscus Lilies Garden Photography
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GenXNEGeorgia
Jan 6, 2018 10:09 PM CST
Sorry to jump in here but I'm wondering if you've helped answer my question. I planted some daylily seeds (first timer) a friend gave me along with some hibiscus seeds on December 29. The hibiscus seeds have come up and are about 3/4" tall but none of the daylily seeds have done a thing. Should I dig them up and pop them in the fridge?
A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust. — Gertrude Jekyll
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
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sooby
Jan 7, 2018 6:07 AM CST
I would give them another week, it's only a little over a week since you planted them. If they haven't started by then, can you just cover the container/s with a plastic bag and put the whole thing in the fridge or would it take up too much space? If too much space and the temperature is above 32F but below 50F outdoors you could set them outside in the shade somewhere. Bring them in if it is forecast to freeze.

Daylily seeds with seed dormancy can take weeks or months to germinate but out of a batch there are usually some that will germinate right away (within a couple of weeks). After that they are sporadic and it's a question of how long you are prepared to wait. That's why damp chilling them in the fridge helps, because that breaks the seed dormancy and they will all germinate quickly and together once you place them at room temperature. Some might germinate while still in the fridge but that's not the idea, the idea is to give them about four weeks in the fridge (winter) and then place them at room temperature so they "think" it's spring and safe to germinate.
[Last edited by sooby - Jan 7, 2018 6:12 AM (+)]
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Name: Nikki
Yorkshire, UK (Zone 8a)
LA name-Maelstrom
Dog Lover Cat Lover Rabbit Keeper Container Gardener
Scatterbrain
Jan 7, 2018 6:11 AM CST
Jackie,

I would leave them, they can take a while to germinate and will probably not germinate until the soil/weather warms up in your area.

I have winter sown quite a few myself and am not expecting to see any shoots until spring.

Edited, cross posted with Sue, Sue is much more experienced than I am with daylily seeds so I would follow her advice over mine.
[Last edited by Scatterbrain - Jan 7, 2018 6:15 AM (+)]
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Region: Alabama
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Seedfork
Jan 7, 2018 8:39 AM CST
@sooby
Most of the seeds in the 12 cups(8 out of 12 now) I planted outdoors on Dec. 12th have at least one seeding that has sprouted. I also have many other cups planted earlier that have quite a few cups that have no seeds sprouted in them. So I will find it interesting to see if any of those cups of seeds get any new sprouts come spring. Some of them have been planted for several months now, but still I am keeping my fingers crossed that a few of them at least will show new sprouts come spring. Now for seven days in a row the temps have dropped down into the twenties(F) so I am wondering about "bring them in if is forecast to freeze". I have left mine out the entire time.
[Last edited by Seedfork - Jan 7, 2018 8:44 AM (+)]
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Name: Ken
East S.F. Bay Area (Zone 9a)
Region: California
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CaliFlowers
Jan 7, 2018 9:10 AM CST
GenXNEGeorgia said:Sorry to jump in here but I'm wondering if you've helped answer my question. I planted some daylily seeds (first timer) a friend gave me along with some hibiscus seeds on December 29. The hibiscus seeds have come up and are about 3/4" tall but none of the daylily seeds have done a thing. Should I dig them up and pop them in the fridge?


If the seed had already been stratified before you planted them, then some of them might sprout sporadically. If they weren't stratified, they'll probably sprout in the spring. The other factor is where they were planted, indoors or out.



Name: Ken
East S.F. Bay Area (Zone 9a)
Region: California
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CaliFlowers
Jan 7, 2018 9:31 AM CST
@Seedfork

I think they'd be OK if you threw a cover over them on the coldest nights. I wouldn't worry too much about the group of unsprouted ones.
Curt Hanson sows his seed in beds after the cool fall weather sets in, letting them cycle naturally over winter. He explains his technique in an old podcast on this site. You'll probably have to make some adjustments for your warmer winters.
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Jan 7, 2018 10:00 AM CST
@Seedfork in Dr. Griesbach's experiments, freezing during stratification was fatal to many of the daylily seeds. While you can freeze daylily seeds for long term storage, they have to be very dry internally to survive. It may be that outdoors where they would be more hydrated they can acclimate the same as plants do, and are less damaged by freezing but that's speculation on my part, because otherwise how would they persist in nature (unless they rely on lots of snow cover to protect from freezing too much). Having said that, I get lots of bee pods here and on most daylilies I don't remove the old scapes before winter so the seeds fall to the ground. I rarely see volunteer daylily seedlings around them.
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Region: Alabama
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Seedfork
Jan 7, 2018 11:44 AM CST
I had pine straw bales on the north, west and east sides to block most of the cold wind (left the south side open for the sun to get to them as early as possible. When the weather was predicted to start dropping down into the twenties I put a thin sheet of plexiglass on top of the bales. That way I would not have to bother with covering and uncovering the plants every day.
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Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Jan 7, 2018 1:04 PM CST
Larry, they would probably be less vulnerable if you had packed some kind of medium around the inner pots to protect the roots and crown. Is that set up complete? I'm not sure how the plexiglas would help at night unless you also put bales on the south side?
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Region: Alabama
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Seedfork
Jan 7, 2018 1:17 PM CST
Yes, I agree they would have been more protected if I had packed something between the cups. But I decided against it, almost did not fool with the plexiglass.
Yes, that set up is complete, because I only expected to use it for the seven day period of 20 degree F, temps at night, except for the pine straw bales on the north side. I originally planned to put the cups on the protected side of the house, but I had no place left that would receive enough sun. Normally we do not get such an extended period of cold weather, last year we had what I remember as being two cold days, but that was not a "normal winter" either. It seems there is seldom a "normal winter" until several years later when looking back over things we seem to sort of average things out in our minds into a "normal winter".
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
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blue23rose
Jan 16, 2018 12:19 PM CST
Update on my seeds. I decided to go ahead and plant them, so I did on January 1. Here it is, 16 days later and 23 of the 28 seeds have germinated. I am thrilled! Am still hoping the others decide to show up.

The only 'grow light' I had was a 250-watt incandescent bulb that was hotter than heck, so I only used it the first few days for about an hour each day. Then, after convincing my husband (and his own research) that the heat from that lamp would burn up the seedlings, he went out and bought me two "REAL" grow lights for my combination birthday/Christmas/anniversary present.
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown
Name: Valerie
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Irises Roses Peonies Butterflies Birds
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touchofsky
Jan 16, 2018 2:41 PM CST
I am glad germination is going well, Vickie, and what a nice gift!
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
Bee Lover Garden Photography Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: United States of America
Region: Indiana Garden Art Annuals Clematis Cottage Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 2
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blue23rose
Jan 16, 2018 5:30 PM CST
Thanks, Valerie!
Vickie
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown

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