Looking for advice on Hippeastrum seed germination

karen__w(z7 Durham, NC)December 22, 2007

Does anyone have any advice on germinating seed from H. reticulatum var striatifolium? Mine bloomed this past fall and now I have three shiny black seeds. They're unlike most Hippeastrum seed, and before I get started I'd love to know if they have any particular requirements. I posted on the Amaryllis/Hippeastrum forum a few days ago but nobody had any advice for me, so I thought I'd try here as well.

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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

Since you know the scientific name, I bet you can find this information on google.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 10:23AM
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karen__w(z7 Durham, NC)

I've done an extensive google search, right down to reading scanned pages from a book at the Arnold Arboretum that was published in 1846. There's very little available by internet and I didn't see anything at all about temperature or light requirements/preferences, so I'm hoping someone can supplement my search information with personal experience. If not, I'll just wing that part, but I thought it was worth asking.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 10:35AM
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hopflower(z8/z15 CA Sunset)

I have only grown them for awhile, and have never grown from seed. I do know that there is a water method used for germinating seeds of any hybrid that is recommended by Veronica Read, a hippeastrum expert. It is described in her book on them. If you are interested, I can post the instructions in this method for you.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 9:43PM
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karen__w(z7 Durham, NC)

I've seen a water method for starting seeds described on the Amaryllis/Hippeastrum forum, but this species has seeds that are round and fat, different from the hybrids. From the little bit I've gleaned so far, these should be planted in a gritty seed starting mix and watered from the bottom. But I don't know whether to leave them in the garage under lights (very cool) or bring them into the house (less cool). I also have a small heat mat I could put them on if they want to be warmer. If you have Veronica Read's book and can see if she mentions germination preferences for this particular species, I would appreciate it.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 10:42AM
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sylviatexas1

The info is closer than you think:

gardenweb's Amaryllis/Hippeasturm Forum has a bunch of knowledgeable, helpful people (& the photos are breathtaking!)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 12:04PM
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karen__w(z7 Durham, NC)

Thanks for the suggestion Sylvia -- I did try posting there first because I know there are individuals who have experience with species bulbs. Maybe it's just that my timing was bad, but I didn't get much response.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 12:55PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

Okay. Try this. According to Ken Druse's "Making More Plants", hippeastrum seed can be started indoors at 70 to 75 degrees, fahrenheidt. They will take 30 to 45 days to germinate. Good luck! Let us know how it goes.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2007 at 8:57AM
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hopflower(z8/z15 CA Sunset)

I did read in Ms Read's book that seeds are different in different species and hybrids. It is not so much the seed germinating process that is different, but the care afterward; depending upon what the plant is used to because of its origins, that really matters. Some come from moist, cool areas with a lot of shade, and some live in areas with a lot of ultraviolet light, etc. The seed handling appears to be somewhat uniform from the sources I have read. You could try a couple of different methods however. Good luck.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2007 at 7:24PM
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bigshoes213(7 Sardis, Ms)

My suggestion would be to place some in water and some in the gritty mix and see what does best. I do not see how placing them in water would hurt. I germinated mine this way. It took about 1 -2 weeks before a root emerged and I kept the glass in my kitchen then moved it to a window until leaves appeared and just potted them up. I had 4 out of 6 germinate. Good luck. I want a varigated amaryllis. You are lucky. Let us know how it turns out.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2007 at 2:04AM
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hopflower(z8/z15 CA Sunset)

bigshoes213: Do you still have your little plants growing now from your variegated experiment?

    Bookmark   December 29, 2007 at 11:17AM
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karen__w(z7 Durham, NC)

Thank you all for the ideas. Unfortunately there were only 3 seeds in the pod and given their size it looks like this is probably standard for this species. So it doesn't leave me with room to experiment much. I managed to find someone on the internet who has experience with this species and sent them an e-mail. I'll let you know what I hear back.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2007 at 8:07PM
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bigshoes213(7 Sardis, Ms)

Sorry I have only tried the non-variegated variety. But they are up and going strong. I have been experimenting with hybridizing them. It has been interesting. I just have to wait a few years to see what they look like.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2007 at 12:21PM
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