The spring sowing season is now here. Below are some tips to help with germinating a few crops.
Sow seeds in a propagation media such as Fafard® Super Fine Germinating Mix or Fafard 1P Mix. Asti Osteospermum should be germinated at 68-73°F (20-23°C) and at 100% humidity. Light is not required for
germination. Expect radical emergence in 8-12 days. Osteospermum tends to stretch easily in the plug tray, so an early application of a plant growth
regulator will prevent hypocotyl stretch and will help tone plants. Apply a foliar spray of B-Nine® plant growth regulator at
2,500-3,500 ppm or Bonzi® plant growth regulator at 1-2 ppm.
Problems with poor vinca germination are often related to low temperature. Cora vinca germinates best at a media temperature of 75-78°F
(24-25°C) and at 100% humidity. Temperatures below 75°F (24°C) will reduce germination percentages and affect seedling uniformity (see
photo). Dark conditions are required for germination. Cover seeds with a thin layer of vermiculite to maintain moisture levels and to encourage roots
to enter the media. Expect radical emergence in 7-8 days.
Tuscany® and Obsession™ Verbena:
Verbena seed germinates best when there is no moisture on the seed coat. This is due to the presence of an opening at one end of the seed called a
micropyle that cannot be plugged with water or the seed will not germinate. It is best to thoroughly irrigate the plug trays prior to sowing and then
provide high humidity with fog or very light misting until radical emergence. Media temperature for germination should be 72-76°F (22-24°C).
Expect radical emergence in 4-7 days.
Pentas require a higher soil pH than most other crops. Sow seeds in propagation media with high lime. Start with a media pH of 6.4-6.8 and maintain pH
levels above 6.4 throughout the production of the plugs. Allowing the pH to decrease below 6.0 will slow growth and cause a calcium, iron, and
magnesium deficiency. Covering the seeds is not necessary. Maintain media temperatures at 73-80 °F (23-26 °C). Expect radical emergence in
Cleome requires alternating day and night temperatures for optimal germination. Germination percentages will be low if a constant temperature is used.
Maintain media temperature at 80-86 °F (26-30 °C) during the day and 68-70 °F (20-21 °C) at night. This can be accomplished be
transferring trays twice daily between environments with different temperatures. Alternatively, trays can remain in one location and the bench
temperature set points programmed to deliver a day and night fluctuation. Expect radical emergence of GoldSmart™ Primed seed in
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