Seed Germination

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Seed Germination

Postby chris oak » May 10th, 2021, 7:12 pm

I just reworked my aquaponics system at work. The lava rock bed worked great, but it was getting to be too much a pain to keep clean. I read up and made a swirl filter and am going to grow the next batch of things on a floating raft, I'll update the aquaponics pix later on.

With all the growing at home, I noticed I was having mixed results on veggie seed germination. Normally I'd buy one of those growing clear containers with little peat moss pellets and it worked out just okay. This time I read up, a lot of guys have success using wet paper towels in a zip lock bag.

The theory goes like this, a wet paper towel provides water for the seeds. If you put them in a warm spot, they will stay wet and will germinate. You can then select the biggest plants and transplant them. I tried that with some lettuce and man within about a week and a half they great out great.

I did the same thing with a mango seed I had and it also sprouted. I'm also trying it with some loquat seeds but it will take a little longer for those to germinate.

If you've never done it, give it a try. I'll post up pix later as they are on my phone, but this video demonstrates the basics:

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Re: Seed Germination

Postby Andrew » May 10th, 2021, 7:47 pm

This is rad, Chris. Thanks for sharing.
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby NaClAddict » May 14th, 2021, 10:02 am

Andrew wrote:This is rad, Chris. Thanks for sharing.


He’s trying to grow an #80 or he’ll dive trying. :greetings-clappingorange:
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby chris oak » May 14th, 2021, 11:24 am

NaClAddict wrote:
Andrew wrote:This is rad, Chris. Thanks for sharing.


He’s trying to grow an #80 or he’ll dive trying. :greetings-clappingorange:


Man if that's all it took I'd be all over it. I'll have you know staying home with the baby is way more fun than shooting 80lbers. Today I washed the cars, cleaned the garage and now I'm going to transplant some seeds. After that I might even have time to pick up the dog poop in the backyard. My life is super exciting, good times :sleeping-blue: .

Here's some seeds that sprouted via paper towel method. The little ones are loquat seeds I just got from a tree. They took about two weeks to sprout but aren't ready for transplant yet. Greg if you want any lmk I'll bring them to work. The tree is really close to the lifeguard storage shed in pedro. The flat seed is a mango, you have to peel off the cover and then there's this giant bean looking thing inside. I put those in a wet paper towel as well and they sprouted in about five days. I'm planting that one today.

The tall one is just a bad pix of the avocado seed I'm potting today. I read the best way to grow those is in water with toothpicks but you peel off the brown cover. I tried that and I'm 5/5 on sprouting them, it works really well. You can also do the wet paper towel on that but it takes like a month to sprout and mine kept drying out because I'd forget. The one in the pix may never fruit as it's not grafted, but I'll probably graft it later and then move it to the aquarium. My plan is to plant a few trees in the back, maybe after I retire and come visit they will actually have fruit. My grandfather planted one from seed and man it produced like mad but it was probably 8 years later.
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby NaClAddict » May 14th, 2021, 10:06 pm

I’d love a loquat!

Waiting on my figs to ripen.

Anyone have lime, ponzu, or kumquats near Redondo?
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby chris oak » May 15th, 2021, 2:00 pm

NaClAddict wrote:I’d love a loquat!

Waiting on my figs to ripen.

Anyone have lime, ponzu, or kumquats near Redondo?


I'll let you know when they grow leaves, it will take a few month. I also took some cuttings which I hope root but it's the wrong time of year for that.

Home depot has bare root fruit trees about dec thru january. I bought a fuji apple and mandarin orange years ago there and it was like 20 bucks. This year I'm going to add probably a peach or cherry tree when that time comes around.
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby Behslayer » May 15th, 2021, 11:24 pm

Hi Chris,

I didn't know you were sprouting Tree Seeds.

You should definitely plant those in some pots with good soil and get a nice rootball established. But one thing you should also do is to try to get a grafted tree of the same species or most preferraably an Air Layer of someone you know who is growing the Loquat or mango you want. I'm not 100% sure this can be done with Avocado. A Fruit tree takes @4-5 years to produce fruit from seed, but from a grafted tree will take @ 1-2 year (mine have taken 1 year), and from an Air Layered Tree fruiting is almost immediate. Atleast take some time and learn more about Air Layering. I'm no expert, but my friend is an expert and he's all about that. They make these cool Air LAyering Clip-on Ball form now which are easy and cool, might have those in your local Agway or whatever Agricultural store you go to.

Over here, I had to grow everything from seed. Dang I was spoiled living in Rhode Island where they have all sorts of Awesome Vegetable Plant Nurseries, one place had like 90 different kinds of chillies/peppers you could buy flats from. Over here. Squat. Home Depot and Lowes... usually nothing. Literally you need to start from seed. PIA, but I planted a bunch of rows of starters of Toscana Kale and another Dark Water Repellent Kale, and Collard Greens, Onions, today.
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby chris oak » June 6th, 2021, 5:28 am

Yah the seed thing is more for entertainment, they can grow fruit but I've heard it will take maybe 6 years or more while grafted trees can produce fruit much sooner. My plan is to just see if I can get some small trees going and then plant them at my work. That way maybe the staff can have some fruit off them in a decade which is a cool legacy. I get real excited when the sprouts come up but am learning a lot, even though most info says to plant them in the sun, unless you water them several times a day they'll dry out. I'm having better luck putting the sprouts under a tree and watering them, they don't dry out like they do out in the sun. I used to hate gardening but now I really get into seeing the plants grow and watering them daily.

The loquat that I plant at home will definitely get grafted once they are a bit bigger. While I have access to the parent tree, I can't do the air rooting as it's not my tree and is in a different location. I took cuttings from it though and used some root powder to see if I can get them to root, from what I've read it's much harder to do that but it is possible so we'll see.

So far using the paper towel seed germination I've had seedlings grow from the loquat, avocado, mango and of course the veggies. I'm also trying to do peach right now. The other problem I'm having is Tank (my kids sulcutta tortoise) has been knocking down the fence barriers and eating a lot of the saplings.
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby Behslayer » June 6th, 2021, 12:36 pm

These Root boxes make it real simple.

https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php? ... 1665190182
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Re: Seed Germination

Postby chris oak » June 16th, 2021, 8:17 am

Thanks Jon, I saw those online. I think I'll have to inspect the plant and see when it looks like the new shoots are coming out, I saw a video on the air rootball thing but its a little problematic because the tree isn't on my property and is by work. It might be easier to just graft them to the trees once they sprout up. It's been crazy, almost all of the seeds from the loquat germinated but once I put them into the ground they are super slow growing. The mangos have been growing much faster though, the grom loves seeing them. I'm curious whether they and my papaya are going to make it over the winter.

One thing for sure I learned with any of the baby plants is that the directions always say "plant in direct sunlight with lots of water". That works out for bigger adult plants, but the new plants always need morning sun and then shade the rest of the day with a lot of water. I put my blueberry, raspberry, banana, mango etc in direct sun as well as a lot of seed sprouts and they started dying within a week. I quickly pulled them and put them in smaller pots in the shade and they are doing much better and came back right away. The young plants just cant handle the heat around where I live.
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