Water Germination of Showy Milkweed Seeds
- 1 Seedling Heat Mat *Durable Waterproof Seedling Heat Mat Warm Hydroponic Heating Pad
- 1 Coffee Filter *Melitta Cone Coffee Filters No. 4 Unbleached Natural Brown 40
- 1 Lunch Plate *Corelle Livingware Tree Bird 8-1/2” Lunch Plate (Set of 8)
- 1 Gallon Dechlorinated Water (tap water set out for 24 hours in an open container)
- 1 Thermometer *Non-contact Digital Laser Infrared Thermometer Temperature Gun
- 1 Plastic Dome any plastic tub that has an opening bigger then the plate will work
Start of Water Germination
2/10/18 12:00 68° 26 seeds placed in coffee filter and placed on plate. Poured dechlorinated water into plate to submerge seeds and wet filter.
2/10/18 21:00 68° drained water off plate. Added fresh dechlorinated water.
2/11/18 09:00 66° drained water off plate. Added fresh dechlorinated water.
2/11/18 21:00 water temp was 63° based on infrared thermometer. Drained water off plate (dropped half the seeds in the sink). Put seeds back and added dechlorinated water. Placed heat mat under plate. Water temp at 22:00 is 70°
2/13/18 01:00 drained water. Added water. 74°
2/13/18 13:00 drained water off plate. Two seeds are showing growth. Added water. Placed plate on heating mat.
2/14/18 01:00 drained water. Added fresh water. Placed plate with seeds on heating mat. At least six of twenty six seeds are growing. Water is 75° at 02:00
2/15/18 00:00 drained and replaced the water. Placed plate on heating mat.
2/15/18 10:00 Five days since test began. Exactly 50% of showy milkweed seeds have germinated. 13 growing 13 not growing.
2/15/18 10:30 clipped the tip of the 13 ungerminated seeds and placed them in a new coffee filter in dechlorinated water on a plate on a heating mat. A plastic dome was placed over everything and the temp is now 80°-85°
2/16/18 00:45 added water to plate. Dome created higher temp which evaporated most of the water.
2/17/18 01:30 drained water. Added water. Placed plate on heat mat and covered with dome.
2/17/18 07:00 test complete. 21 of 26 seeds are growing in only seven days.
Within 5 days 50% of the seeds germinated. Thats 13 of 26 seeds growing in five days. Clipping of the 13 ungerminated seeds was done at the end of 5 days. The 13 newly clipped seeds germinated at a rate of 62% after two additional days. That means 8 ofthe 13 slow to germinate seeds did end up growing after clipping occurred Total germination of the 26 seeds was 21 seeds or 80.7%
Water Germination of Common Milkweed Seeds
Water germination of showy milkweed seeds worked very well. 80% of the showy milkweed seeds germinated in seven days. I am repeating the test with common milkweed seeds.
When you ask the internet "how to grow common milkweed?" you will almost always be provided directions to Cold Moist Stratification of Milkweed Seeds. Does it work? Yes. Is there a faster way that works? Lets find out.
Water Germination of Showy Milkweed Seeds worked and you can read about that at the beginning of this blog post. I'm in the process of testing the method using common milkweed seeds. The results will be updated as they become available. As you can see in this photo the common milkweed seeds are in a coffee filter. The coffee filter is placed on a lunch plate. Dechlorinated water is poured onto the plate so the seeds are fully submerged. The plate is placed on top of a seedling heat mat. A plastic bin is placed over everything. The temperature of the water is measured with an infrared thermometer. Current temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit Try to keep the seeds between 75 degrees and 85 degrees. Latest update 3/6/2018
Day one requires an initial setup. Place the seedling warming mat on a table and plug it in. Set a plate on the seedling warming mat. Hopefully the day before this you have left water out for twenty four hours so it is now dechlorinated water. Pour the water into the plate. Place the milkweed seeds in the coffee filter. Set the coffee filter on the plate so the seeds are completely submerged in water. Water temperature should be 75 to 85 degrees.
Day One Video
Clipping the milkweed seed will speed up water germination. The seeds can be clipped before going in the water but I like to wait twelve to thirty six hours before clipping the seeds. Letting them absorb some water in the first day makes them softer and easier to clip.
Day Two Video