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How to condition or prepare Zinnia seeds for next year?

Posted by HighlanderNorth Mid Atlantic USA (My Page) on
Tue, Oct 4, 11 at 13:39

I am growing the large Zinnias that are supposed to reach 30".

But I have a slight lack of sunlight(June-July:6-7 hours, Now: 3-4 hours), so mine have grown much taller, to between 45" - 72".

They were planted from seed very late, in late June.

Now, some of the flowers are ready for seed removal. The seeds are coming off easily, and are mostly black or dark green colored, so I have cut 4 of them and pulled the petals and set them out to dry. Then I will keep them separated by color.

But I am wondering if maybe they need to be winterized or hardened in any way. I know some plants and seeds need to experience cold weather for awhile to be viable or survive, so I was wondering if I need to store or treat these seeds in any special way?

What do I do with them to prepare them for next year?

Can some be grown inside now? Will they germinate now?

**Also, with tomato, cucumber and pepper seeds, I am throwing many old rotten tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers back into the garden where they were originally grown, so that maybe some will automatically grow back next year. How will this work out? Is there any special way to do it? I've just been cutting them up a bit and tossing them onto the ground....

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: How to condition or prepare Zinnia seeds for next year?

  • Posted by morz8 Z8 Wa coast (My Page) on
    Tue, Oct 4, 11 at 22:02

As for the vegetables tossed back into the garden, some may will depend on weather, birds, rodents too to some extent, things that would eat the seeds. I've had tomatoes, cukes germinate and grow in the compost pile, not peppers.

If you allow your zinnia seeds to dry thoroughly, then put them someplace cool and dry to store, they should germinate at 70-72F when you sow them in Spring. No pretreatment needed.

RE: How to condition or prepare Zinnia seeds for next year?

Don't know about zinnia seeds, but I can tell you from experience, be careful where those tomato seeds go. They self-seeded in the garden, the compost and thus plant pots, other parts of the garden. Their tough seeds live through city sewage treatment!

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