Trees From Seeds

Todd M. Bolton tmbolton at
Sat Sep 27 11:02:27 EST 1997

Michael Courtney wrote:
> Sure, I can buy trees cheaply as seedlings, but I'm also interested in
> trying to grow them from seeds.  My main interests are sugar maple, red
> oak, black cherry, blue spruce and hickory.  Seeds are readily foraged
> in the woodlands around our farm.
> My question is how does one plant, say, a seed from a sugar maple?
> Will it just grow or does it need to be dried or sit on the ground over
> the winter?
> And what about black cherry seeds?  Can I just pick up berries and
> take the seeds out, or is it better to find seeds that have been
> through a raccoon's digestive tract (both are easy)?
> Are the details involved and different for each tree such that I
> need to visit the library (references appreciated), or can I just
> plop the seeds into potting soil and go.  I am an experienced
> gardener and small-scale farmer, but I am just beginning to understand
> trees.  If you give references, please give several to increase my
> chances of actually finding some of them in the libraries I have access to.
> --
> Michael Courtney, Ph. D.
> michael at

I suggest, __The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propogation, From Seed
to Tissue Culture__  by Michael Dirr and Charles W. Hueser, Jr., Varsity
Press ISBN 0-942375-00-9  copyright 89

Just part of the P. serotina directions; "Cold stratification for 4
months produced 86% germination."

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