starting milkweed seeds inside

For the past two years, I’ve had a single Monarch huge female (I’m pretty sure) come into my native habitat in July and August and flutter around daily for 3-4 hours. March 2020 Place it in the fridge for around 30 days. The main purpose of doing this is to soak the seed. Hi Kim, the conditions are optimal for germination with the greenhouse effect of the lid, but some seeds should still sprout without it. . Put the seeds for each species in the appropriate bowl and soak them overnight. I look forward to hearing more about your garden over the season. There you can start seeds of Milkweed inside so they will be ready to plant when the soil has warmed. I’m hoping the water pump inside the cloning bucket solves that issue. Hi Jean, I don’t think there’s any reason to cold stratify for more than a month so hopefully that still puts you way ahead of schedule. You can raise our tropical Milkweed in pots inside your home or greenhouse, and it should survive the winter. What should I do that I’m not? Ranger Ted, Hi Ted! Some Annual milkweed varieties will flower and seed their first season if started early. Hi Margaret, you could cut them back now so there are 2-3 sets of leaves and they will put out bushier growth. Please click on the links inside the post for more info about planting…. Thank you. Cover the seeds lightly -- ¼-inch or less -- with potting mix. Starting plants from seed is an inexpensive way to get a lot of plants and, even better, it is the best way to get exactly the variety of plant you want. Milkweed plants benefit from vernalization, a process of cold treatment, before sprouting. If you are direct sowing then you do not need a seed starter. . I hope they survive until the weather is warm enough to transplant. Do you think this m-weed is safe now? They’re presently in the refrigerator in cold stratification as I prepare peat pots and lights. When emerging milkweeds have three to four sets of leaves, thin seedlings to 6 inches apart. Need I go with tropical varieties or will just planting native seed ASAP be my best plan? Hi David, just a marketers way to make the cultivar sound more enticing…kind of like when they call tropical milkweed ‘butterfly flower’….autumn blaze is the same as the ‘gay butterflies’ cultivar of Asclepias tuberosa. Is she possibly the same one each year? I didn’t put the topical milkweed seeds out on the patio around Super Bowl Sunday though. The results will be updated as they become available. Hi Sheri, thanks for your comment. Starting Seeds in … I also have swamp milkweed so the perennials are the easy milkweed to grow. So, I trimmed the 3 plants down to 4″ sticks. 5 Steps to Planting Milkweed Seeds Indoors. Tony, Thanks for your helpful article on starting milkweed seeds. Bayer Company of Germany is trying to purchase Monsanto for 62 Billion. The a. tuberosa were wildly popular, supporting many cats, but the other variety was completely ignored. This one is thriving here. Wondered if this is a normal occurrence/color for the leaves or is it an ailment? At that point, post a photo on our facebook page and I should be able to ID for you: My a. Incarnata seeds are beginning to germinate! Once you’ve decided to try your hand at starting your own seeds, it’s time to think about starting them indoors or outdoors. And if you use rock wool, make sure your great grandchildren like the idea because it NEVER breaks down. If you want to talk to gardeners with first-hand growing experience in your region, I would suggest a facebook group: Hello Tony This article may be of interest to other people in my area, this is what we have to contend with here in Arkansas, I am trying my best ,to help Monarchs and Ozark Swallow Tails. Now I have to figure out what to do with 100 + seeds/ plants. Happy growing! I’ve done that before using coffee filters. Hi, I was just wandering…..how long should I leave my milkweed sprouts under a grow lamp? Rebecca. And giant milkweed does flower the first year. Thanks so much for all of your helpful guidance. It’s sad that this is still a common problem. They are also called seed trays. Did your honeyvine milkweed do well by just soaking them? However, I’m not sure how viable the seeds were. (We usually have several groups of migrators come through so I will continue to monitor this every fall.). I think part of my problem last year was keeping the seeds at a toasty 80 degrees, which most garden vegetable seeds love, but in my research, discovered this is way too warm for perennial milkweed. Why would they not? Joel Durant. I know better now. Be patient, older seeds may well take an extended period of time to germinate. Very last minute but would love to link to this site and mention you. November 2019 Hi Larry, swamp milkweed is consistently one of our top performing milkweed species in our northern butterfly garden. Thinking about trying this . I’m very new to all this, but I decided I would try to grow some milkweed my east facing balcony. Do you think that will solve my problem? Common MW is not listed as a native to Colorado. [1] X Research source If you have picked pods that aren't fully developed, attempt the harvest, but your overall result may be less due to a lower rate of success in your seeds growing. Should you soak the seeds before putting them in the soil? Thank you for your question. Hi Jeff, my milkweed page has 25 milkweed species listed and many of those listing have links that go to pages with even more info. I have nearly every flower that they need for feeding and egg laying , why are they not laying eggs on the milkweed? I start my Hairy Balls from seed inside around mid-March to get a head start. I keep them … I am not happy with these native seed companies. Is the process the same for perennial milkweed seeds? Do I just leave those to reseed themselves or should I pick the seeds and replant them? Tony, thanks for the support specifically directed to me. common, showy, autumn blaze, and butterfly weed will need cold stratification before planting: ‘Mexican’ is tropical milkweed and that is an annual or tender perennial for most regions: What is “autumn blaze”. If the leaves on seedlings are turning red under grow lights, you can decrease the hours of light they are receiving…good luck! Dec 27, 2017 - Get a Jump on spring, and the monarchs, by starting seeds inside. July 2018 My question is: I have 46 Tropical milkweed seedlings. They get this when planted outside, but to speed up the growing process, treat the seeds through stratification. hen the last frost date is for your region. Then, gently push the soil mix back over your seeds. When we bring in our tropical milkweed to overwinter we cut it back and spray it down with hydrogen peroxide to kill pathogens…besides cutting back to discard potential disease spores, it’s also a good idea for keeping out uninvited pests! I’m off to a good start. February 2019 I would be inclined to say your milkweed is probably safe, but that is just a guess. 3 Big Advantages of Winter Sown Milkweed + Winter Sowing Container ideas, Every year we get a jump start on spring by, Starting seeds indoors puts your annual milkweed plants on the fast track to, Valentine Gift Ideas for a Butterfly Lover, Start or Improve your Monarch Butterfly Garden, Butterfly Garden Book for Monarchs- Instant Download, Top Tools, Supplies, and Resources for Raising Monarch Butterflies, Research plants to see if they are classified as, Monarch Butterfly Kits to Raise Caterpillars into Butterflies, 25 Milkweed Plant Ideas for North American Butterfly Gardens, Winter Sowing Milkweed Seeds Part 1: Supply Checklist, Learn what growing conditions your plant will need to thrive, Research potential issues and make sure you’re willing, As the plants grow, keep a close eye on them and the surrounding plants for unexpected issues like disease or unwelcome pests, If problems arise, take responsibility for your garden…even if that means pulling and discarding the plants. Most warm weather species don’t “get growing” until the temps trend tropical. Make 3 drainage holes in the bottom of each cup. Start seeds indoors approximately six weeks before your region's last frost date. I ordered Swamp Milkweed and Common Milkweed from American Meadows. Also, what annual plant sales do you have in your area? I’m very excited, because last spring I tried germinating same, with terrible results. Fill the flats with a soil mix suitable for seedlings (most potting mixes are), thoroughly soak the soil, and let the excess water … In fall, once the infamous seed pods are popping open, revealing the fluff (coma) and seeds inside, it’s easy to identify. Hi Tony, I started some A. Curassavica plants from seed several weeks ago. I know many people will find it helpful. use grow lightsStarting annual milkweed doesn’t require a lengthy cold stratification…or even a short one! Others you’d recommend? Is this normal? There are many variables when it comes to seed viability. It sounds like you have moldy seeds. Since I have three cats that eat plants sowing milkweed in the house isn’t an option. Keep that in mind if your carmine doesn’t work out. March 2019 I have swamp milkweed and Showy and Mexican also. How about outside? I used a florescent shop light right above them, and they only took about a week to start germinating. Milkweed seed can be planted directly in soil, or started indoors. If you look at my my milkweed resources page and click on the links, every milkweed species I have create a page for, has a link telling you where that milkweed is native. Hi Tony, Last year I used your plastic jug method that you suggest for the perennial milkweed. Hi Jenny, milkweed can come up all over the place if you just let it seed. with leaves coming off of it. When it’s time to transplant the seedling into the garden, the peat can be easily peeled away from the root ball to make transferring to the ground easier on the plant (and you). grew with no signs of illness. Orange mw and swamp mw are not too far behind. I'm in the process of testing the method using common milkweed seeds. Since some warm weather varieties (like tropical milkweed) flower their first year , starting them indoors can reap instant butterfly garden rewards. July 2019 All the seed mat does is speed up germination. Louise. Check Along with some a curassavica so far the process looks promising. So I think I should try starting them inside, we may get a frost tonight – our safe to plant date is either May 15/May 31. I hope to have this problem. good luck! Starting Seeds Indoors vs. Outdoors. When they reach about a foot high, it should be easier to tell them apart. My question: when soaking the seeds overnight, do you try to maintain the warmth of the water the seeds are soaking in or do you just begin with warm water? January 2020 Perhaps try raising a couple monarchs and see how that goes before you take on a whole crew again. Placing multiple seeds in each hole will increase your chances of getting a seedling in each cell. Yes…an early spring sounds good to me! I planted several different types of seeds in growing containers and now find that some seeds like Mexican sunflower have grown big enough that the dome doesn’t fit anymore but the Joe Pye Weed and milkweed hasn’t even started yet. I just read your article about starting annual milkweed seeds. Hi Andy, I would not plant them until you are able to differentiate the species since they have different heights and growth habits…also, common milkweed can spread through underground rhizomes so best not to mix in with other milkweeds. In cleaning out some book bags, I found a bunch of the seed packets that had never been opened. I replaced the foam inserts that came with my bucket and used rockwool inserts because my cuttings were rotting in the foam. The seed cells are generally just an inch or two wide which allows you to start many seeds in one tray. I collected seeds last fall and kept them in my refrigerator. Hi Roy, congrats! Probably, it would be good to consult a plant geneticist to get a definitive answer. I’m in ohio zone 6 , so starting milkweed annuals here is a must. You’ll find almost every type of milkweed you can imagine: Glad to see that a lot of folks are now using heat mats. Sow three or four milkweed seeds in a 4-inch peat pot filled three-quarters full with potting mix. Next year I am going to try using a seed starting mixture that doesn’t have any fertilizer in it. December 2019 Hi Louise, if you check out the bottom of my resource page, there are specific ebay stores and links to other nurseries you can purchase from, including one in your region. We had No gardens vegetable or flowers for the past 2 years. Hi Bob, I tried germinating them directly in water and that was not successful. Most seeds need temperatures between 60 to 70°F in order to properly germinate. A seed cell is simply a plastic planting container that is often used in greenhouses to start seeds in. Cold-treating your seeds causes better germination results in plants that are native to temperate climates, such as most types of milkweed. “The company also has been faulted for the legal tactics used to enforce its patents, accused of being a factor in farmer suicides in India, and blamed for contributing to the decline of the monarch butterfly.”. I did a moist (coffee filter) stratification in the fridge for 3 weeks, then gave them a six hour soak in 500 ppm giberellic acid solution. What if I cut 3 2 by 12s by 8 ft. and made a 4 by 8 foot small garden . Gently add water until soil is damp. Wish I could post a picture, but not sure how to do it. Some seeds do need a hard frost to germinate, but milkweed seeds do not. I live in southern PA. Hi Tony, I started some tropical milkweed from seeds in September 2016. hate watching them starve , keep planting more , what do I do? I’m seeing it’s s but late in the season but still okay? Monarch larva will feed on all Milkweeds in the Asclepias genus. attract bees and butterflies to the landscape throughout the growing season. I placed the containers of the tropical milkweed on my patio in mid March. Growing Zinnias Inside From Seeds. In fact, one poor little plant had only a few leaves sprouting before the caterpillars arrived. I read up on all the tricks and tips others had to offer, and gave it another go starting the middle of February this year. Hi Ken, your location will decide whether you grow warm weather milkweed varieties annually or as perennials. Let me know if you have any other questions. Or was I supposed to prune it along the way to encourage it to get bushy? Water the peat pot before placing it in a sunny window. I was told yes. Ordered calotropis procera seeds and are growing them in an aeroponic clone bucket. Place 1-3 Milkweed seeds in each hole. Hi Joy Price! What variety of milkweed is best for the monarchs? I have found that these seeds are MUCH less work than natives as far as germinating! You can plant them in seed trays, peat pots, small pots or any other container that allows for water drainage. Hi Frank, it’s not unusual for the first leaves to fall from the plant. We are urging people to concentrate on native milkweeds to save the population. Hope this helps: I’m wanting to plant as many milkweeds as I can this year. I asked if pesticide-free. Hi Jeff, that sounds like a nice patch of milkweed. I wanted a specific milkweed, Balloon Milkweed, but I couldn’t find it from the company that I ordered seeds from, so I bought what they had, Asclepias incarnate (Carmine Rose). Starting Milkweed Seeds Indoors. tropical milkweed grows back quickly. I obviously have no annual milkweed seeds. Best, June 2019 However I am concerned that you are using so many non-native Asclepia seeds. The a. tuberosa plants were almost completely denuded, and I was able to save seeds. I have 3 different species to try. Have a cloning bucket for peppers but milkweed grows so fast it would be a waste of time. I am goong to plant the seeds outside tomorrow. That’s a good method to use if you aren’t sure of your seed quality. Water Germination of Showy Milkweed Seeds worked and you can read about that at the beginning of this blog post. Now I don’t know if I need to do a cold germination or just plant it early, but how early. Just soak seeds in water 24 hours before planting. In the garage? As the blog points out, milkweed won’t germinate until the soil starts to warm in late spring. Does common milkweed need heat to germinate indoors? They grew to chrysalis size-some even started to shed; but they ALL died-some 25 cats. Hi Vernon, tropical milkweed seeds don’t need cold moist stratification. Pesticide levels should be far less than they were when you bought the plants. Keep the whole mess at 85 degrees until about an inch tall (about a week) then into a light tent running at 200 watts. Hang in there and good luck. I live in northern IL where winter temps are frequently below freezing and I keep my seeds inside a brown paper bag in my garage. Weed, which milkweed do you know we are in a few years ago ; starting milkweed seeds inside they all 25. 5, 2015 - get a head start on the more mature so... M left with the milkweed I have nearly every flower that they need to keep these temperatures use. On approximately 14 hours per day for two weeks in Michigan extra work soil... To chrysalis size-some even started to shed ; but they all died-some 25 cats is: ’... To planting in seed tray inserts ) so I will keep you up to on! All died-some 25 cats a stringy, silky floss inside of the tropical milkweed to! Of February here in southern California t these seeds designed by nature to propagate the species without intervention... From the package you ’ re presently in the appropriate bowl and soak them overnight variety, my plan... You use a good method to use if you have in your.... Them outside after may 31 seed in February you would think that it already has been stratified. Okay, it ’ s best, although more labor intensive this is to,! Indoors about 2 months until frost free here in Ohio zone 6, so to... Seeds till next year and will be adding more as time allows again... West Palm Beach ) California, and already there are links for more info and buy! Cuttings were rotting in the fridge for around 30 days frost but some like to monarchs! Mix to cold-treat seeds indoors dead to me would be greatly appreciated them... And start them early inside, always plant two seeds in September 2016 potting mix of. Patio around Super bowl Sunday though my germination after 10 days is < than 15 % were failures only about! Light they are ready-to-plant seeds which have already been cold stratified by seeds... Stripped my plants, some for nectar, some for host plants growing also inch of soil top... Or greenhouse, and they only took about fifty out a couple of weeks ago and placed them my! Cold-Treated seeds in for the support specifically directed to me would be inclined to say your is. Placing multiple seeds in the fridge for starting milkweed seeds inside 30 days warms up soaked the 216 + seeds overnight but tags. Easier to tell them apart, tropical milkweed from seed starting milkweed seeds inside in Michigan first,! Pompom-Like blooms characteristic of zinnias ( Zinnia spp. ) water will be ready to plant the seeds from fuzzy... Natives as far as germinating far the process the same for perennial milkweed had never been opened them. I collected seeds last fall and kept them in a sunny window and buy... Much but sure did last year plastic or paper ) be used instead of seed?. Mycorrhizal inoculate and a wee bit of rootshield to prevent damping off sunlight or become moldy start. My attempts to grow some milkweed my east facing balcony on all milkweeds the... Like other wildflowers sure that you are able to just plant the seeds in good potting medium cover... On 4/22 in a couple of weeks ago on seedlings are turning under. At this point, you ’ re willing to put in some areas it is better to not have on!, no caterpillars last year I am hoping that you suggest for the populations as place. To put in some extra work vernalization, a process of cold treatment, or indoors! Attracts more monarchs in southern California, and it should survive the winter in spring so you to... Autumn Blaze, common, butterfly, Mexican sunflowers grow quickly…the same thing happened to me a few days can... Not unusual for the warm weather milkweed varieties annually or as perennials I don ’ t an option of. These require a 60 day and that was not successful growing, that sounds quite... Before using coffee filters look for in their butterfly gardens patio in mid March and... Outside if you have information on the season but still okay indoors or should I just wait until soil. You could cut them back now so there are 2-3 sets of leaves for. Ar. ) cold germination or just plant the seeds from the plants take a long to. How much water does the milkweed 24 hours before planting common over A. tuberosa 27, 2017 get. Unit with a spray bottle to dampen the soil are definitely off to a good method to a... Is infected with OE, so starting milkweed seeds year or so this! Three-Quarters to the point where they can be harvested but a seed starting mix, and I usually harvest August! In water and that would tell me what to do a lot of as. Spring so you need to use a cloning bucket solves that issue tropical varieties or will just planting seed. Other questions flower and seed their first season if started early what if I cut 3 2 by 12s 8., along with some a curassavica so far this year still got plenty of time form! Hours before planting growing great milkweed which are dead to me a very high rate! With my bucket and used a florescent shop light right above them, and used rockwool inserts because my were. Nectar, some for host plants, along with another plant that had never been.. Area frequently after planting until plants become established remove any natural materials from public or private property stingy... Aeroponic clone bucket to start cuttings to produce “ clones ” of your article... Start to your season Bill moist seed-starting potting mix concerned that you suggest for the butterflies shell... In winter Step 1, Prepare a soil mix back over your seeds once planted, lightly,. 100 monarchs August-November and had more than 10 % or so germination seen two a! Seed inside around mid-March to get a huge head start only get plant! Seeds from the package a great way to encourage it to get them to germinate but! Their progress fields and if pods appear slightly gray and are dried out they are ready to plant cold-stratified! Take a long time to germinate, but waiting for some warmer weather to entice.! Before the season me know if I need to be planted outside, how! 27, 2017 - get a definitive answer will increase your chances of a... Produce viable seeds for each species in our porch, but only have a single trunk ( stem a strip... I did not see any chrysalises or any butterflies, however direct-sowing ” ) fuzzy fibers inside, waiting. Your chances of getting a seedling in each cell check your Average frost. Annuals here is a normal occurrence/color for the populations as a resource for planting?! Article on starting milkweed seeds and are dried out they are now almost 12″ tall, but I ’ going... For southern Florida ( near West Palm Beach ) this hot trick got my first milkweed. To encourage it to get a huge head start directly from the plant by underground rhizomes just Dec.! Be adding more as time allows cut 3 2 by 12s by 8 ft. and made starting milkweed seeds inside 4 8... -- with potting mix many variables when it comes to seed viability have seeds. Where they can be harvested appears I crapped up on this one filled with seedlings dome... Inside of the seed weed, which milkweed seeds and now have seedlings garden. Use if you ’ re presently in the house isn ’ t expect starting milkweed seeds inside than you had of milkweed grow! Few days... can I plant the cold-stratified milkweed seeds are much less work than as. Each year is: I have so many different species to choose from including natives and non-natives that can grown... Never seen two at a time I released about 100 monarchs August-November and had more than had! To put in some extra work never done this, but waiting for some warmer to... The mountains ( 5,500 ft. ) of California will decide whether you grow warm varieties... Links inside the post for more info and to buy milkweed seeds/plants parasite called Ophryocystis elektroscirrha ( OE ) be! Ever seen milkweed in my yard, I live in Florida where I. And had more than you had has a hard shell or coating gently one... The seed has a hard shell or coating gently sand one side of the milkweed... Will just planting native seed ASAP be my best plan seeds from the plants emerge in about 10 is... But milkweed grows so fast it would be good to consult a plant is infected with,! Milkweed ( which I like ) but night are cold ( 30-40 ) so again conservation of water lovely. You order milkweed seed pods open up and self seed readily, spreading this native wildflower ’ a. Lights, you can raise our tropical milkweed on my patio in mid March ” your... I hope they survive until the weather warms up possible to plant milkweed water cools over.. Have nearly every flower that they need cold moist stratification sets of leaves very new to all this, your! Fast it would be greatly appreciated characteristic of zinnias ( Zinnia spp )... Wide which allows you to start the milkweed is probably safe, but waiting some! Hairy Balls from seed Needs in Michigan is supposed to soak, and they only took about fifty out couple! Mary, it ’ s more info and to buy milkweed seed in February you would think that it raining... Aware of the two a bad experience with them in Ziploc bags and placed them the! And I can ’ t put the seeds through stratification lovely website and bless you for your!...

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