summer sowing perennials?

ellenr22 - NJ - Zone 6b/7aJune 8, 2014

I haven't done this before, but I see no reason why it wouldn't work.
Sow seeds now, by the time I plant in garden, probably too late for them to bloom this year, but that's ok, I'll have them next year.
what do you think?

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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

Perennials covers a lot of territory.

If your temps are not so warm as to slow germination, and if the perennials you wish to sow don't require a moist chill before warming to break dormancy, you could sow now. Chances are in a Z7 seedlings could be strong enough to make it through winter.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2014 at 2:12PM
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I have done this successfully with sweet Williams, foxglove (biennial) delphinium and echinacea. They are the only ones I have tried it with. I have always thought sweet Williams were biennial but I have done that are now 4 years old.

I usually start them on my screened deck and then slowly acclimate them to outdoors once large enough then plant in ground late summer-early fall.

This winter I finally wsed so e foxglove and wow! The seedlings are huge now. I too often don't get everything sowed that I want to try though, hence the later sowing times as well.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 10:34PM
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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

When you've sown foxglove later in spring or summer, do you get blooms the next spring? Or is it still the season after that? I'd love to speed up the process of getting foxgloves established, but could simply wait for my current blooms to drop seed, since they seem to selfsow quite effectively. Same thing with columbine. What do you think?


    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 9:44AM
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lois(PA Zone 6)

When summer sowing, remember to put the jugs in dappled shade so the summer sun won't fry them. (Ask me how I know!). I started summer sowing this year after I moved to the Raleigh area (I know I need to change my zone to 7b). I have successfully sprouted foxglove and hollyhock so far. I am trying to research the seeds I sow to see if they require stratification before I summer sow. I don't expect any of the seeds I sow to produce flowers this year, but I do expect them to produce flowers next year.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 8:36AM
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ellenr22 - NJ - Zone 6b/7a

Absolutely. I used to have to remember to water my containers so often when I kept them in full sun all day. Now I have them in dappled shade = less watering = less work.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 8:46AM
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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

Thanks, Lois.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 9:31AM
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My summer grown foxgloves bloom great the next spring. They usually don't survive beyond that. If I do not sow foxgloves every year, I just do not get a good group of them blooming reliably.

Foxglove seedlings seem pretty tough and don't resent transplanting like some other seedlings. Last week I dug up some groups of ws seedlings that were too crowded and divided them out. They drooped one day but have now sprung back to looking vigorous. Summer sown seedlings have been still quite small still by fall but generally put out enough growth next spring for blooming.

I just received an email from john scheeper's seeds recommending summer sowing perennials and I remembers this thread. They suggested either flats or an inground nursery bed. I keep thinking if a starter nursery bed, but I fill in all open ground with plants!

My delphiniums seem to take an extra year to get decent sized though. They have bloomed the year after sowing, but don't really bilk up until the following summer.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 1:28PM
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I'm sprinkling lobelia cardinalis in the fall. I've tried WSing for 3 seasons. No success. Somehow I've ended up with a lot of blue lobelia plants?

    Bookmark   August 2, 2014 at 10:09PM
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pitimpinai(z6 Chicago)

When I have so many seeds, such as Rudbeckia, larkspur, dianthus barbatus, feverfew, Rose campion, I just scatter them all over the garden. :-) Chances are some will grow one way or another.

I only winter sow the most precious seeds and those seeds that I really, realy want to make sure that they germinate.

I have been collecting this dark red, nearly black petunia seeds from planters along the Chicago river. :-D I will winter sow them instead of scattering them now.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2014 at 4:20PM
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