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CULT: HYB: germinating seeds

I got an offlist note asking information about germinating seeds, which
made me laugh (asking the Rot Queen for advice is probably not the best
place to go <g>), but here's what I do:

Sometime in December when it looks like we are about to have serious
winter (which we only had in November last year), I plant my bearded
iris seeds in flats or pots or washtubs with a fairly sandly soil mix.
I think maybe I don't plant them deep enough.  I have usually covered
them with about 1/4 to 1/2 inch of soil, but freeze/thaws and heavy
rains tend to uncover quite a few seeds, which I try to notice and poke
back under the soil. I had terrible germination success last year, for
whatever reason, but in years' past have reasonable success.  I am
careful to cover them with Reemay and insulate with air temperature
water bottles or bring them indoors starting in March if we have sudden
drops in temperature below about 25F following warm, spring peeper
weather.  They won't have germinated by then, but will be giving serious
thought to it and listers (e.g., Lloyd Zurbrigg) have warned that the
wee babies can be killed at that stage if they get too cold.

Linda Mann east Tennessee USA zone 7/8

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