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Two winters needed

Posted by madabouteu 8A - central Alabama (My Page) on
Fri, Jul 25, 14 at 10:30

Sometimes I get no germination after winter sowing wildflower seeds, and dump the soil from the container on an inactive compost pile. This can lead to surprises the next summer.... so far this year I have seen a clump of Monarda fistulosa spring up from that pile and now Brown-eyed Susan is in full bloom on that same pile. Another composite is in bud but not yet blooming - I wonder what I will be! It seems that some seeds need two winters, or that my stratification is inadequate that first winter.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Two winters needed

I think this phenomenon is not uncommon. It happened to me growing Rosa rugosa from seed I collected (but I had saved the container) and today I identified something that did not come up from a 2012 re-seeder, Rudbeckia triloba. I guess the conditions must be just right for natives to germinate. Only Mother Nature knows.

RE: Two winters needed

I had read somewhere about seeds somehow being genetically programmed so that they all won't germinate the first year. If I recall, some would take up to 7 years to germinate. The scientists thought it had to do with species survival. If there was a drought or flood or some other extreme weather event, and all the seedlings one year were wiped out, there would still be seeds available in nature to germinate the following year so that the species would continue to survive.

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