Dioon Cycad germination time?

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sanatic1234

Dioon Cycad germination time?

Post by sanatic1234 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:36 pm

Hi how long do dioon cycad seeds roughly take to germinate? mine have been in pots for 2 weeks now roughly.
Last edited by Dave Brown on Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: edited title to reflect the subject rather than just the plant family name

metalhammer

Re: CYCADS

Post by metalhammer » Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:44 pm

How long is a bit of string?


If they are really fresh,they can germinate really quickly,but if stale,then you'll wait forever.

Did you float test them before sowing?.Any that float should be discarded,they have no embryo present.

Cycads are very weird seeds,many have what's called an after ripening period,on some this can last upto 18months,basically if you sow them,they'll sit there until they reach the right point of ripeness,then they'll germinate.There are a few cycad seeds that float when they are viable - Cyca thouarsii,Cycas circinalis & Cycas rumphii(I think).

What temperature are trying to germinate at?.I keep mine between 28-33c for 16 hours a day & around 20-23c for 8 hours a day.


metalhammer.

sanatic1234

Re: CYCADS

Post by sanatic1234 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:01 pm

I did do the float test and they all sank to the bottom i did soak for 48 hours as instructions advised.
I did have my seeds at 20 - 25c constantly when in my airing cupboard but have now put them on my kitchen windowsill and my room temperature is at 20c. I did even think about putting them inside my propagator whilst still in there pots icon_scratch
Not sure if this would help or if it would just confuse the seeds with having a higher temperature than its been use to.

metalhammer

Re: CYCADS

Post by metalhammer » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:04 pm

Good sign as they all sank,20c is to low though,at least 25c but a bit more if you can.Remember they come from a hot climate,Dioon edule very rarely produces any growth under 24c,I have had them not produce a new flush of leaves for 2-3 years,then because the temperatures are right,you can get 2 flushes inside 3-4 months.




metalhammer.

sanatic1234

Re: CYCADS

Post by sanatic1234 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:10 pm

I shall more than likely put them inside my heated propagator then as that gets very warm temperatures inside there, i have recored 40.4 only last week with my thermo.
So really these won't produce growth in the uk till its the summer period then?

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Re: CYCADS

Post by redsquirrel » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:11 pm

i have half a dozen or so from jan methorst popping freely since i put them in the airing cupboard,temp varies between 22 and 30 ish in there
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sanatic1234

Re: CYCADS

Post by sanatic1234 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:16 pm

I may be being to hasty on taking them out so soon. my max temp is 25 in the airing cupboard. and 40.4 in my prop so far.
How many cycad's have germinated for you?

metalhammer

Re: CYCADS

Post by metalhammer » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:18 pm

40c is a bit high,low 30's are going to work best.At 40c your in danger of cooking them.What germinating medium are you using?.I use a 50/50 mix of Perlite & Vermiculite.I also use sealed containers so the seed can't get dry.I never use pots for germinating cycads or palms.




metalhammer.

metalhammer

Re: CYCADS

Post by metalhammer » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:19 pm

Certainly more than 1000,probably nearer 1200.

Only genus I haven't tried are Microcycas & Chigua,neither are ever available.Microcycas come from a small relict population on Cuba & Chigua,there are 2 species come from the Amazon rainforest,nobody actually knows the location as there is less than 50 individuals of each species.



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Re: CYCADS

Post by redsquirrel » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:24 pm

sanatic,i havent done many,only ones i was given.sprouted 3 macrozamia communis and about half a dozen dioon edules.cycads from seed arent really my thing,mainly because they are sooooooooo slow.
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metalhammer

Re: CYCADS

Post by metalhammer » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:29 pm

Macrozamia's aren't noted for there speed,but an ancient Macrozamia moorei is a thing of real beauty.Can have over 200 fronds in the crown & a reclining trunk that might be upto 8metres in length.





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Re: CYCADS

Post by redsquirrel » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:35 pm

i think mine will still be seedling nut size when i cark it mh.that being the case,im not too interested in how they get on,rather try and get a few palms to trunking size where my efforts might be noticable
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sanatic1234

Re: Dioon Cycad germination time?

Post by sanatic1234 » Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:26 am

Metalhammer. i am just using levingtons compost, as its high in nitrogen, and phosphate, and has the water locking system. All the seeds i have sown so far have loved it. :)
My heated prop only reaches them kind of temps when a certain someone forgets to open the vents for temperature control and humidity control. i.e ME! :roll:

My cycads are being sown in horticultrial sand with gravel on top. I have even thought about adding compost to the sand and having 50/50 of each. icon_scratch

metalhammer

Re: Dioon Cycad germination time?

Post by metalhammer » Wed Mar 17, 2010 8:13 am

I wouldn't use a soil less compost for growing cycads,a soil based John Innes with some added grit will be much better.From memory Dioon prefer a neutral mix.Some will want an acidic others alkaline.I'm not trying to make it sound difficult,it ain't,but a lot of cycads are quite specific in there needs.I would suggest you get a good Cycad book - Cycads of the World by David L.Jones is an excellent work,if a bit expensive.

Sand will be fine for germination,you don't need to cover with gravel though,half the seed needs to be exposed.Look at the end of the seed & you should find a liitle hole,this where the root will come out of,that basically needs to laid level to the surface.






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Re: Dioon Cycad germination time?

Post by Dave Brown » Wed Mar 17, 2010 8:27 am

sanatic1234 wrote:Metalhammer. i am just using levingtons compost, as its high in nitrogen, and phosphate, and has the water locking system. All the seeds i have sown so far have loved it. :)
Sanatic,generically your mix is a recipy for failure :roll:

Seed do not need any nutrients to germinate as it has it's own energy store. High feed levels may damage the first root and if that happens kiss goodbye to your plant. Also if the feed is not balanced you may end up with a seedling unable to sustain itself. ie if you feed high nitrogen you are promoting leafy growth, which may be out of step with root growth. This plant may be fine in the prop, but once removed and in lower humidity, the huge leaves may transpire faster than the small root can replace the moisture, result..... dead plant.

Many, many people fail in growing from seed as the sowing medium is too wet, so having a water locking system may not be a good idea. The seed will not use any moisture until after germination if pre-soaked...... so just damp, and sealed, should be enough. :wink:
Best regards
Dave
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