Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Starting Cyclamen from Seed

The ripe fruit capsules of Cyclamen are best planted when ripe, although even seed such as these which have ben stored for several months have a high ratio of germination.

Cyclamen seed on damp paper towel, fold the paper over and then put them in a sealed plastic sandwich box.

Leave the box in a cool dark place ( a cool corner of the basement works for me). Check them every now and again and you'll find that in about two weeks the seed will start to sprout a little corm with roots and the beginnings of a leaf stem.

I then transfer them to soil, making sure they have good contact with the surface and then I sprinkle some fine gravel ( I use Turface ) until they are just covered.

In a few weeks you'll see the leaves break through the gravel.

Keep them in the pot for at least two years, in that time you will have identified your favourites which you can pot up or plant out in the garden ( the best time for this is late July just before they come out of summer dormancy).

Although plants may take up to three or four years to bloom, every one has unique foliage that can be enjoyed in the years that they mature.


M. Lefebvre said...

How many cyclamen does it take to fill a greenhouse?

LHawthorn said...

What a wonderful post, your cyclamen are so lovely. As a new enthusiast, this is very helpful and inspiring. One question - is it okay to pot up the sprouts into small clay pots rather than plastic?

Barry Parker said...

Hi Laura,
Glad you found this useful. I have to admit that my most recent sowing of cyclamen seed has been a little disappointing, but I have in the past had great results with this method.
I would recommend keeping seedlings in plastic pots for the first couple of years. They need more careful watering and can dry out quickly at that stage.