Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sowing wildflower seeds

I've had a nice selection of native (and non-native) wildflower seeds that I've been meaning to try to sow and nurture for awhile. The natives included  Liatris species (punctata, ligulistylus, pyncnostachya,  and squarrosa), Rudbeckia triloba, Heuchera americana, Tiarella cordifolia, Rhexia mariana var. exalbida, Angelica atropurpurea and Ratibida pinnata. The non-natives included another Angelica ( I think a European species) and Smyrnium olusastrum.

I sowed them in small pots (in an aluminum tray for watering from the base), and will wait to see what happens. As a plant ecologist (who in a previous life studied germination ecology of native plants), I know that the germination biology of most native wildflowers is normally driven by environmental triggers that break dormancy only after successive seasonal warm-cold cycles, etc. depending on the circumstances of the species' native habitat.

One of my purposes of growing more natives (and other plants) is to support pollinators of all sorts.

I recently received an e-mail about a bee-a-thon, sponsored by YOURGARDENSHOW.COM. 

bumblebee 'sleeping' in Catawba rhododendron flower
Sounds like a worthy endeavor (promoting awareness about all of our native bees as well as European honeybes), and I'm planning to join in this Saturday, July 16.

2 comments:

  1. So,,,, mimic Mother Nature and drop the seeds into soil about the time the seeds naturally drop from the ripe seedpod? I like that method.

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  2. We now have three hives managed by friends in our new garden. I had my first sting yesterday. Take care when scything near a bee hive!
    Rob

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