Catkins - how to germinate?

Jeffrey P Schnurr schnurr at
Tue Oct 17 14:35:08 EST 1995

Each catkin contains many nutlets which appear to be discs with a bump in 
the middle.  If the catkin hasn't dried out completely, it has not 
entered its deep dormancy so it can be sowed and covered with a thin 
layer of sand or fine peat moss to maintain moisture.  Germination 
percentage may be very low, hence the need for prolific seed production 
on birch trees.  You do realize that you could get really crappy 
seedlings since birch outcross almost exclusively.  I imagine that the 
same seed situation applies to willow, but why don't you just take 
hardwood cuttings in the middle of winter after vernalization is 
satisfied and root these, then you'll know what you're getting at least.

Mr Chris Goodwin (cgo at bob) wrote:
: Hi all,

: 	I have some catkins (from a silver birch I think,
: and hopefully soon from a weeping willow). I want to grow
: these into trees. How do I germinate them? Do
: they need stratifying? Or can I just plant
: them in some seedling soil?

: Is the entire catkin one seed, or is each bristle a seed?

: Many thanks from an amateur,

: Chris
: cgo at

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