Plant ID forum: Seed identifcation

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lancaster county pa
lee8989
Feb 2, 2018 3:12 PM CST
Hello everyone! I hopefully have an easy question that has stumped me for a couple of weeks. Let me start by saying I don't have a very green "green thumb" That was more of my grandmas cup of tea and she could make any seed grow that she could find. Her favorite was a patch of orchids that she grew from seed. Now, on to my question. She has now passed at age 98 and I found her seed collection-which she has left to me. Everything is labeled except one pack. They are unlabeled in a ziplock baggie and I think I would love to try my hand at them. There are five of them, oblong, and hard. I've included some pictures. Does anyone have a guess of what they are? We live in southern Lancaster County in Pennsylvania. She might have gotten them on a walk but in my 28 years and my fathers 59, we have never seen anything close to it.
Thumb of 2018-02-02/lee8989/783cbb


Thumb of 2018-02-02/lee8989/833e89

Name: Sally
central Maryland
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sallyg
Feb 2, 2018 3:35 PM CST
big seeds. Could they be a locust tree, some kind?
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Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Feb 2, 2018 3:56 PM CST
Or... Maybe pawpaw or persimmon.
lancaster county pa
lee8989
Feb 2, 2018 5:20 PM CST
Thank you for your speedy reply! We have a lot of locust trees around here! But if in the chance it is something else would I prepare the seed the same way? Scarify it? If i understand the artice correctly i just sand off a little of the seed end. I'm sure thats what my grandma did when she was growing lotus. Would that be an acceptable way to do it if its any of the above answers? locust persimmon or paw paw? Thank you again so much for your help!
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
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Leftwood
Feb 2, 2018 5:27 PM CST
[Last edited by Leftwood - Feb 2, 2018 5:34 PM (+)]
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Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
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Leftwood
Feb 2, 2018 5:33 PM CST
Sorry, I posted before I saw you last message. No scarifying with pawpaw or persimmon! That would mean outright death.
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

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plantladylin
Feb 2, 2018 5:34 PM CST
They remind me the seedpods of Honey Locust (Gleditsia triacanthos)



Another good photo here: https://www.bing.com/images/se...
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~


Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Feb 2, 2018 5:36 PM CST
Oops ... I see it was already identified. *Blush*
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~


lancaster county pa
lee8989
Feb 2, 2018 5:44 PM CST
Thank you! I'll lean towards the honey locust. Do I soak the seeds before I scarify? after? I'm determined to make my thumb a lot more green. Thank you so much for your help!
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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Leftwood
Feb 2, 2018 6:12 PM CST
In your hand they look pretty big. Locust seeds should be about a half inch in length or less. Paw paw would be three-quarter inch or more.
lancaster county pa
lee8989
Feb 2, 2018 6:16 PM CST
I just measured them. For the most part they are around an inch. Should I put them in some dirt and try them? Or in a potting soil? Maybe scarify two and let the others go? What would you do?
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Feb 2, 2018 7:23 PM CST
I like your plan.
Porkpal
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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Leftwood
Feb 2, 2018 7:52 PM CST
Yes, I'm pretty sure they are paw paw, so unfortunately, these are recalcitrant seed and don't tolerate dry storage. They are probably already dead. Even so, their germination requirements are not straight forward.
http://www.pawpaw.kysu.edu/PDF...

If they are still alive, these kinds of seed need to be re-hydrated very slowly. This is what I would do:
-- Certainly DON'T scarify, and DON'T soak in water.
-- put them in a ziplock freezer bag with a barely moist paper towel. Your aim is to re-hydrate them with 100% humidity, not water contact. Regular ziplock bags have some vapor exchange through the plastic, so be sure to use a freezer bag. 3 weeks at room temperature, dark or darkish. Be sure to mark the date on the bag.
-- then put freezer bag in refrigerator. 3 months. Be sure to mark the date on the bag. If there is condensation in the bag, that's okay.
-- plant seeds 1.5 inches deep in area where they are to grow for the rest of their life. (Paw paw abhor transplanting.) Keep moist. Seed coats will be fairly soft and easily damaged. Be careful! You can't push the seed into the ground like you would a dry bean seed. Dig the hole, place the seed, and cover with soil. If you are successful, they will begin growth in a couple weeks, but you won't see anything above ground for a month and a half.

If seeds rot or get moldy anywhere in the process, it is because they are dead, or the seeds were physically damaged. Just discard any that may succumb.
lancaster county pa
lee8989
Feb 3, 2018 6:32 AM CST
Thank you for your help! I'll give it a go and keep my fingers crossed. I'm excited and nervous at the same time. I'll mark on the calendar the days so I can't make a mistake. Thank you!
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Feb 6, 2018 8:10 AM CST
Personally, I'd start them in pots.
When I purchased pawpaw seeds and started them in pots, some were kept outdoors, some inside until after last frost... All came up well, and decanted into outdoor location without any problems.

Unfortunately, pawpaws generally need to be planted immediately after eating fruit.

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