African seed germination

Todd A Wallace twallace at mason1.gmu.edu
Thu Jul 7 21:03:13 EST 1994


I wanted to thank everyone here on bionet.plants who helped me figure
out how to germinate some African seeds, Leonotis leonurus, aka
Wilde-dagga. I ended up using a combination of those suggestions with
great success.

My technique: I used a small jar with a tight screw top. I recycle these
jars from their original use, which was to hold boullion. The jar is
about 3 inches high by 3 inches wide.

To prepare the jar, I fold up two sheets of paper towel until they make
a small thick square that just fits in the bottom of the jar. I then
saturate the towel with water with some plant food drops added.

Normally I can stop at this point and germinate almost any seed.
However, with these African seeds, I had to drop them into a cup of
boiling water, just out of the microwave. I did not microwave the seeds.
After about 3 minutes, I removed the seeds from the water with tweezers
and shoved them gently between the edge of the paper towel and the glass
(i.e. not on _top_ of the paper towel).

In four days, all but one of the seeds germinated. It was easy to see
the root as it pushed its way down between the glass and the wet paper
towel.

In another jar, prepared identically, non-boiled seeds still sit without
germinating.

---------------
I have had many people email me asking me where to mail order African
seeds. Let me post the address here for all to see:

		Of The Jungle
		Box 1801
		Sebastopol, CA  95473

		(ask for a catalog -- $2.00)

Thanks especially for the responses from people in South Africa who gave
me a lot of insights on African seeds.




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