When do you plant seeds taken from this years plants....

Hello - sorry in advance for such a basic question, but I've managed to collect a lot of seeds from flower heads and I have no idea when to plant them.... Can I plant them now and leave them in the greenhouse over winter, or is it best to wait until spring to plant them? Does it depend on the type of plant? Thanks in advance for any advice x


  • kate1123kate1123 Posts: 2,815

    It does depend on the plant.

    There are a few things you could try now like lupins and violas. There are hardy annuals that are quite happy to be sown now but a lot of seeds will not appreciate the light fading and the temperatures dropping.

    Some seeds have to be sown now so that they can be stratified over winter.

  • Hello. what I am learning is try to mimic the plant itself. So.....if a plant goes to seed, wait until those seeds ripen and then sow them. I think that way I'm just behaving how nature does.

    Having said that some seeds you can keep and others it's best to sow straight awayimage. It really does depend on the plant. I'm in my first year proper of collecting seeds.I collected & sowed some ragged robin seeds, I've just started putting the plants grown form this seed out today.

    LIke kate says hardy annuals you can sow seeds now- I'll probably sow some calendula soon.

  • Jean GenieJean Genie Posts: 1,724

    Does anyone know anything about planting Astrantia seeds ? I'm new to this as well and have collected a lot of seed from mine. I've been reading up on this and the information says to sow fresh seed right away so I've put some in a seed tray and left it outdoors. I've also heard they are hard to germinate.

    Thanks, Jean,

  • When I save seeds and am unsure of when to sow them, I check the seed packets in the garden centre!

  • I've tried sowing Atrantia seeds for the past two years but so far with no success. Up until now i have always sown in the spring but this year i am going to sow in the next couple of weeks and keep in a polytunnel to see if this makes a difference. 

    I've found that Lupins, Delphiniums and Campanula (alba) can all do well being sown in the spring and have seen flowers on 1st year plants quite often. Other successes have been Quince, Polemonium, and Aquilegia.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,055

    I sow astrantia when it's ready to fall off the plant and just leave it outside til it germinates - not long. They don't need any protection, they do better without it. I put grit on top to stop them being washed out in heavy rain. It also keeps the moulds/algae etc growth at bay. This works for a lot of seeds, especially hardy shrubs, anything from the ranuculaceae family and a lot of apiaceae. It's essential for some plants as Kate 1123 says




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