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Post new topic   Reply to topic    Irish Gardeners Forum Home -> Perennials, Ferns and Ornamental grasses

P. somniferum won't germinate?


 
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Chris_IE
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
Rank attained: Hazel Tree


Joined: 03 Sep 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Dublin

PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:50 pm    Post subject: P. somniferum won't germinate? Reply with quote

Hi All-
I have a few dried pods of poppy seeds (this season's) and have tried to get some of them started in small peat pots on my kitchen windowsill. They're planted in a mix of compost and perlite and I have been keeping the soil fairly moist for 2 weeks now but there is no sign of germination yet.
I'm following instructions for planting that said to just scatter them on the surface and then lightly press them down for better contact with the soil, but not to cover them.
I have read that people have trouble starting poppies from seed - can anybody tell me why and whether I should keep waiting for these to pop open or not?

Thanks!
Chris
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michael brenock
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 1275
Location: cork

PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the pods should have been split open and allowed to dry before sowing. This year was my first time sowing poppy seed having saved a capsule since last year, i forget where I got it. They all germinated and I dumped hundreds of the seedlings. There is one about to flower and I will be delighted if it is the bright orange coloured type. I sowed the seed in March in unheated glasshouse and i was not sure whether I should treat it as a biennial or not. I have a few other seedlings also but only one has a flower bud.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)
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Chris_IE
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
Rank attained: Hazel Tree


Joined: 03 Sep 2006
Posts: 7
Location: Dublin

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply Michael - the capsules were brown and dry as a bone - in fact the seeds were rattling around inside. The little crown-like bit in the middle had opened and the seeds poured out quite easily. I just don't understand why they haven't sprouted yet - conditions seem good. I hope they will eventually spring to life as they were a red/white variegated type that I haven't seen before and should look great in my garden. I'll post if there is any change - thanks again!
Chris
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