Germination guide for Prunus mahaleb
These notes are a general guide,it is recommended to check specialist literature for some of the more unusual seeds in our lists.Some knowledge about growing from seed is necessary to germinate even the easiest seeds
.Most seeds require humidity to germinate, even desert plants likeWelwitschia mirabilis
require that their growing medium remains moist until germination.
Most seeds require oxygen to germinate, if buried too deep in their growing medium, or if the medium is too wet, the seeds may not get the oxygen they require.
Some seeds need to be in the light (surface sown) or in the dark (sown deep enough to receive little or no light) to germinate.A rule of thumb is to cover the seeds their own width deep in the growing medium, but some seeds prefer to be sown much deeper,and some fairly large seeds like to be surface sown (or higher).
Many seeds germinate best at certain temperatures, some will germinate at a comparatively wide range of temperatures,yet others need fluctuating temperatures.
Almost all seeds are waiting in a dormant state for some outside stimulus to break their dormancy, some just need sufficiently high ambiant humidity, others need scarification, vernalization or to be passed through the intestines of an animal. Prunus mahaleb seeds will usually germinate in 120-365 days, even under good conditions germination may be erratic. Normally will only germinate with light, GA-3 may promote germination - even in the dark. Sow seeds about 2mm deep in a Well drained seed sowing mix at about 22°C.Soak overnight (Pre-chill for 4 months)Here's the REAL "Secret" to Virtually 100% Success in Germinating Japanese maple tree seed...
...Use FRESH, new season seed! Yes, honestly that's the most important thing you need to do. Please do NOT buy from seed merchants or from online eBay sellers who do not care about your seed germination success. You are almost certain to get old, dry seed buying that way.
Having bought Japanese maple tree seed myself in the past from big name seed companies and then failed to germinate them, I decided there has to be a better way.
Quite by chance I stumbled on the 'secret' of using fresh seed only after finding a 'rare' source that offers fresh seed.
So here's what you need to do to get guaranteed germination success...
1. Get fresh, new season seeds. Note: Fresh seed season is typically December through March.
2. Store them in a zipper bag.
3. Keep them for at least 90-100 days in the refrigerator.
4. Look at the seeds from time to time and make sure they are not becoming dry. If needed, add a DROP or two of water, every few weeks, so the seeds do not dry out.
5. If (and only if) you see mold develop, and as soon as you see it, use a fungicide, very sparingly, following the manufacturer's directions or apply a weak solution of bleach (1 part bleach to 9 parts of water)
6. At the end of the period of cold storage, the seeds are germinating naturally, even in the zipper bag in the fridge!
7. Transplant the seedlings as they germinate, planting the emerging rootlet in a seed compost. We use and recommend using a coir (coconut)-based growing medium.
We grow a lot of our seedlings in plastic tubes. These are the same tubes used by the USDA Forest Service. This way we minimize the additional handling of seedlings (thereby reducing our time/cost and chance of damaging the delicate seedlings when replanting).
You should also be careful to watch out for late Spring frosts. Search for our YouTube video and additional online articles on Spring frosts and Japanese maple trees! Your seedlings might germinate in January - February - March and you could be faced with a period of several weeks when the new seedlings are at risk from frost damage. Your seedlings need to be kept in a frost-free place but also need to get good light and air movement around them. Keep the seedlings in good light or they will grow long, straggly and weak stems.