Layering Germination Experiment

Moisture and layering with paper experiment for tiny seeds.

A layering experiment for germinating tiny seeds. After 1 week in cold water at the bottom of the fridge, the seeds were spread out as much as possible, between a folded sheet of acid free paper, and misted down. Then carefully placed on top of a pot of moistened soil, and covered with invisible baggy to hold in the moisture.  With the white paper, I could easily see the seeds overall germination rate, and the paper gave them a protective layering away from fungus and possible rot from the soil. It was easier to see darker mites that tried to invade and thus eliminate them quicker.  I was worried that the roots wouldn’t be strong enough to puncture the paper and root well, but they did so the first day. Sprouted the first day too-overnight!  Once they sprouted, I took off half of the top sheet of paper ever so carefully, and left the other side covered to see if there was a difference in growth rate.  The covered side was taken off the next day, and despite having no light, they grew better than the other side that had no cover, (probably because of the pressed in moisture) although they were quite squished from the weight of the paper. Didn’t want to leave the paper on too long and have them deformed.  I expected these to be really difficult to germinate, but I’ve got a regular crop!

These tiny seeds will be trees. I can’t believe something so small will turn into something so big! I’m terrible at thinning; I want to save them all. I water the earth daily through the side crevices, and mist the paper several times a day, keeping the plastic cover on. They seem to be doing very well.

More Marigolds

Did you know that marigolds are edible? I have never eaten any types of flowers before, so this practice is quite new to me. They are supposed to taste a bit lemony, and be good for the skin.

These were taken with a borrowed better camera.

A close up of the patterned one.

I love the coloring on these.

I was a little worried that the bees weren’t coming in closer to the plants to pollinate, but since these have blossomed, I notice they buzz around  as they should.  When I was watering the other day one of the bees seemed to briefly touch me on the hand in a purposeful, gentle way, as if it were registering me as part of the garden. I think they are more complex than we give them credit for.The birds too seem to be starting to make more visits, they look like they could use a bird bath.  It’s starting to feel more like an Eco-system rather than a bunch of plants grouped together.

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