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Good afternoon, sunday
I've got a packet of Sutton's Strelitzia Reginae. Read up on the INTERNET
before attempting to grow them.
What promoted this writer to run a search on these Bird of Paradise items,
was the profound shock of examining the seven 'seeds' -at first I thought
these creatures where already growing - however I now realise the tuffs
are part of the seed.
The advice is cut this off and soak the seeds in 'ethrel' - this compound
appears to be a commercial product available no doubt in large (expensive)
amounts. The suggestion is just use 6.5 mls. Sounds pretty lethal stuff.

In my shed I have rooting compounds, friendly funghi (mycorrhizal) for giving plants a kick up the rear -works a treat with bulbs & nunerous other plants besides roses, plus the usual fertilizers.
The forecast is a long, long germination so I want the best possible chance
of success also the seeds were expensive I must have been mad.

On plant Strelitzia reginae



We are all mad, Sam, spending large sums of money on seeds ( and plants) that might never grow! Good luck with the Strelitzia.

9 May, 2010


mmm why cant you soak them in water,isnt that what they do in the wild,and will you take lots of pics of beginning to end result ,good luck

9 May, 2010


What happens in the wild? The Internet has the answers.

In South Africa various associates have done much reserach on native South African plants including Strelitzia. After studying what generally happened in the Cape, they noticed that germination was spasmodic, but observations did discover a pattern.
The Birds of Paradise grew alongside numerous other species happily, but new plants rarely emerged -
Until after thr rains during months following bush fires!

It appeared seeds from the mature plants were being activated by fire, the result of burnt material in the soil leeched with rain water, or the cleared ground provided an area with little or no competition. Naturally there could be combinations too. Out of their research came a series of tests to discover the key compoments that would trigger germination. In nature obviously some seeds would germinate 'on their own!' , but for gardeners tlike this writer - 1 -2 years is not too exciting.

Ultimately 'Smoke Priming' became the answer, this is acheived by taking
one of the special discs, placing it in a suitable small container, adding 50 ml of water, then soaking the seeds in the solution for 24 hours. The discs are
steeped in the chemicals from burning Cape plants plus a further series of stimulants are added.
The full product title is 'new improved formula Super Smoke Plus.'

The method can be used for various seeds of other plants that grow in South Africa -apparently ericas (heaths0 & grasses even lobelias - benefit from the CAPE seed primer. Proteas & many other species.

My seeds have had the tufts removed, soaked in the chemical treatment
and are now HOPEFULLY - waking up at this very minute. Meanwhile my
refrigerator has some UK seeds , which are being given a cold session,
apparently those WAKE up after being chilled.

There is plenty of helpful advice of the INTERNET, though for Strelitzias,
one had to extend the searches to South Africa - also enthusiasts out there have been extremely helpful.


5 Aug, 2010

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