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Campanulas from seed?

Posted by manifest USDA 11a, Sunset 24, (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 25, 12 at 7:14

3 years ago I bought a wahlenbergia that I collected seeds from from Annie's Annuals. It's a member of the campanula family and I fell in love with the spring and summer-long blooms. It re-seeded freely and I often had volunteers pop up in the garden.

When we moved, I collected seeds from the wahlenbergia, but have not had any luck starting it from seed. Anybody have any tips starting wahlenbergia or other campanulas from seed? I've tried a good seedling mixture and have the seed tray under a little plastic tray with some airflow to create a greenhouse effect where it gets about 75 degrees on average. So far, no luck.


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RE: Campanulas from seed?

  • Posted by morz8 Z8 Wa coast (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 25, 12 at 7:40

Wahlenbergia akaroa, albomarginata, and congesta , Sow at 68F, if no germination in 3-4 weeks, move 40F for 2-4 weeks (stratify, meaning provide a period of moist chill), then back to 68F for germination.

There are many campanula, not all germinate under the same conditions. Some will germinate sown as above and surface sown (seed not covered), others need a chill for as long as 2 months. Still others will germinate in cool temps as low as 40F, and another group should be Fall sown or require a sequence of warm, cold, then cool periods in that order to break dormancy. We'd need to know which campanula to suggest which method is usually most reliable.


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RE: Campanulas from seed?

  • Posted by manifest USDA 11a, Sunset 24, (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 25, 12 at 12:23

Sorry I had a bad link above. Thanks for the response. morz.

I'm trying to sow a Wahlenbergia sp. 'Blue Cloud'.

Wahlenbergia sp. 'Blue Cloud'


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RE: Campanulas from seed?

  • Posted by morz8 Z8 Wa coast (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 25, 12 at 15:23

I'm not sure but it looks like that one may be wahlenbergia cuspidata Blue Cloud -

You may have the seeds a little warmer than ideal at 75ish, and going by whats helpful with the others, if its been more than a month, I'd put the sown seeds (moist) into the refrigerator for 2-4 weeks (wrap the tray/pot in saran). Bring them back out and if you have someplace about 10F cooler than the 75F they are in now to leave them for a while, do that.

Here, I'd put the pots outdoors now but I understand you aren't having the same cool weather (50 and raining at noon). If its difficult for you to control the temperature and not have them too warm, if you have more seed why don't you sow again in late Fall, leave the pots outdoors. Surface sow these, don't cover the seed.


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RE: Campanulas from seed?

  • Posted by manifest USDA 11a, Sunset 24, (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 26, 12 at 6:01

Thanks for the helpful info, morz. When the seeds self-sowed, it was in summer and temps were in mid 70s, so I tried to give the seeds those same temps. I'll try to stratify them, as well as a few other methods you suggested. I have lots of seeds, so it couldn't hurt to try a few different methods at the same time to see what else works.

If no seedlings germinate, it could very well be they're no longer viable. They're about 6 years old and from what I understand, the longer seeds are kept, the less viable they become.


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