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Bergera Koenigii (curry leaf tree) propagation

I've been struggling to germinate my Bergera Koenigii seeds from eBay seller 'dinidumilan96' in Sri Lanka. My own errors are definitely somewhat to blame for my problems. I didn't understand how small they were and didn't notice that the dried fruit flesh was still on the seed. I soaked the seeds for 20 minutes in Hydrogen Peroxide diluted in tepid water. The seeds started falling apart and splitting in half so I hurriedly rinsed them and put them in the hot water cylinder cupboard at a constant temperature of 28C/82F. They were in a tupperware container on damp tissue. They almost instantly went mouldy. 
Tried peroxide rinsing again and removed the skin this time. Again mouldy after a couple days.
After another peroxide rinse they're in a cococoir/perlite 50/50 mix on a warm windowsill with no mould visible but no sign of action in 2 weeks.
TBH, the were a year old. However, many people in the Indian Subcontinent swear by air dried seeds from the previous season. It would appear that most Western info sources recommend fresh seeds.
I then emailed every Sri Lankan Bergera Koenigii seed seller on eBay asking when they were harvesting seeds. I specifically wanted to order from Sri Lanka because their economy is in freefall at the moment and ordinary people are struggling to eat.
These sellers all reported fresh seed now in May: abma_855, dimay8140, legit_mart_store2, witchmaster2012, sunflower_store39, dissanayake_store, chanpahala_0, canitstore.
My orders from abma_855 and chanpahala_0 arrives in a few weeks and I intend soak in warm water for 12 hours and remove all traces of skin and plant in the seedling mix in a warm propagator.
Any propagation advice would be much appreciated.


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,953
    Most of us on this site are UK based.
    We can't grow the Curry Leaf Tree in the UK as it is too cold, so I'm not sure we'll be able to advise you as I doubt any of us have tried to grow them.

    There are lots of YouTube videos that may give you some ideas-

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • where are you based? In my ( limited) experience from several years ago , far easier to propagate from cuttings from fresh produce bought - if you are based in sri lanka/india/bangladesh or some such, these should be easy to source. The plant grows easily once established ( in those climates) but is hard to germinate reliably  from seed. If you are UK based, I am not sure that it is lawful to import seeds from eg sri lanka from private sellers as may be found on ebay as there is a risk of importing disease.
    Kindness is always the right choice.
  • vejaypatelvejaypatel Posts: 5
    I'm based in London, UK. The EU 2019/1793 Annex 1 ban (retained by GB) to protect from citrus greening disease specifically applies to Curry leaves from India. Sri Lanka is not subject to any such import restrictions:
    It's because it's been hard to source fresh curry leave since 2015 that I want to grow Bergera Koenigii as house plants and gifts for family and friends.
    Thanks, I had seen those videos. They all seemed to have fresh seeds in contrast to my last batch of old seeds. I'll keep trying.

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,953
    The RHS gives one supplier who stocks these plants for mail order
    Rather expensive, but in time you could take cuttings from it to supply friends and family - I'd like one too :)

    I have seen the fresh leaves in Waitrose - but also rather pricey

    Jekka also has them, they don't offer mail order any more, but you can arrange to pick one up from one of their events.

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • @vejaypatel as @Pete.8 says, waitrose stocks them , but also ( and cheaper and generally fresher) , depending on where you are based in London, good asian greengrocers in southall/wembley/tooting etc should have bunches. I had some ( temporary) success in rooting a sprig from a shop in drummond street in euston a few years ago.

    My point re importing seeds was more the risk that private ebay sellers (Sri Lankan or otherwise) may not be licensed to export plant matter to the UK , not re the curry leaf tree import restrictions from India specifically - but as you seem well versed in the regulations perhaps you have already checked that.

    As an aside, and for what little it is worth, I don't know of anyone who has grown this domestically successfully enough to harvest sufficient leaves from them though.
    Kindness is always the right choice.
  • vejaypatelvejaypatel Posts: 5
    I'd struggled propagating Persicaria odorata bunches from Vietnamese supermarkets because they weren't very fresh and suspected I'd have similar problems with Curry leaves. TBH I fancy the challenge of propagating from cheap seeds sent from Sri Lanka. Just need to learn how. I'll let you know how it goes. This may take some time.
  • IlikeplantsIlikeplants Posts: 894
    Persicaria odorata - I grow these as a herb. Very easy to root in water but my local independent garden centre also sells these as plants in their herb section. It should smell very fragrant compared to the flowering plant.
  • I think norfolk herbs sell the vietnamese coriander online ( assuming it is in stock) . Good luck with the curry leaf tree , I totally get why you want to have a ready supply fresh to hand if you can make it work!
    Kindness is always the right choice.
  • Finally some action!
  • Received 11 genuinely fresh Bergera Koenigii seeds from chanpahala_0 on 04/06/22. A few were quite mouldy. Fairly easy to remove the flesh.

    Got at least 3 good sprouts by 21st June (2.5 weeks).

    I have nearly 80 from 3 different suppliers bought at different times that I'm still waiting on. 

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