The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Seed germination test in flats

Seed starting

Lettuce seedlingBefore the seed order comes the seed test to determine whether older packets still contain intact propagules. I ran some germination tests the usual way, but I went ahead and put herbs, kale, and lettuce in a flat for their trial.

I figured these guys could be set out starting about a month from now under quick hoops --- not so long to nurture tender seedlings indoors.

Sure enough, the lettuce passed with flying colors (72% germination --- not bad for uncontrolled conditions in a flat) and were potted up into little plastic cups five days after the test began. I'm still waiting on the slower sprouters --- they get one more week to attempt germination before I order replacements through the mail.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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Hi Anna and Mark,

There seems to be this presumption that testing germination with water is the best you can do.

Fukuoka got motivated when he found someone germinating 10 year old bean seeds.

I have always wondered what that secret formula was?

KNF [Korea Natural Farming] seems to be doing something similar.

So who says seeds ever really die? In the soil, some remain viable for 100s of years.

'Should' we be always presoaking them? In what?


Comment by John Sat Feb 10 18:35:44 2018

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