How To Grow Penstemon From Seed - Krostrade

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How To Grow Penstemon From Seed

If you want to know how to grow penstemon from seed, you can simplify the process into three steps. The procedure itself is not complicated, but it would help to have some knowledge of starting plants. More so, growing penstemon from seed would be more comfortable in the greenhouse to guarantee germination. 

Speaking of germination, one of the best things about the perennial penstemon is that it is relatively easy to grow from seeds compared to other plants. Let’s say you don’t want to do stratification or a pre-germination treatment before sowing. You can choose penstemon species that will germinate without this process, but you can always use the greenhouse to break the seed dormancy if you have no choice. 

 

Learn How To Grow Penstemon From Seed In 3 Steps

 

Step #1. Seed collection

Penstemon seeds mature in fall, and you can collect the seeds yourself for planting. If you don’t have a penstemon in the garden, you can also collect in the wild, but make sure to check your federal and state regulations when doing so. If you want, you can also get your seeds from the American Penstemon Society

Most gardeners also recommend storing penstemon seeds for six months to one year before you use them. Remember that a 100% germination rate is not easy to achieve with seeds, so it’s better to store them for a while before sowing. You can use paper envelopes and place them in a cool, dry place until use. 

 

Step #2. Pre-germination treatments

As mentioned earlier, some penstemon species require pre-germination treatment such as aging, stratification, chemicals, scarification, and changes in conditions of light and temperatures. The techniques you’ll do may change as the years pass, depending on which you notice would be the most effective. But more than these treatments, the key to success in growing penstemon from seeds meant sowing a high number of seeds. 

To give you a general idea of pre-germination procedures, you can stratify the seeds. One technique that’s useful for northern penstemon species is growing the seed at above freezing temperatures in a moist medium. Another example is sowing the seeds in a lightly covered pot of moist perlite and vermiculite outdoors in winter, or in a sandwich bag in the refrigerator. 

The seed germination itself can happen in months or years, and the environment’s conditions play a role in how soon it starts. Either way, don’t forget to transfer the seeds in a warm location and receive light once germination occurs. You can use the greenhouse to maintain the temperatures from 40 to 60°F to encourage the young penstemons to grow.  

Another method to encourage seed germination is by scarification or removing the seed coat. By doing so, you can break the dormancy of the seeds. Cutting or causing an abrasion on the seed coat is especially useful for some penstemon species, such as the Penstemon haydenii. 

 

Step #3. Planting

How does one plant a penstemon seed? You can plant penstemon seeds directly in the ground by scattering them in the fall, and the ideal location should have shade but still receives rain and snow. Similar to planting other plant seeds, make sure to prepare the ground first by loosening it. 

When you scatter the seeds, they should have enough space among them to anticipate their growth. Once you have them thinly on top, you can use potting soil or coarse sand to cover them lightly. The beauty with penstemon seeds is that they don’t require other tedious practices, and they should sprout well by spring. 

You can then gauge if you can transplant them by the middle of the season. However, make sure that you mist the medium well or provide supplemental irrigation as you’re waiting for the leaves to emerge. Once the seeds grow two pairs of true leaves, you can replant them in separate containers with fertilizer. 

The greenhouse can still accommodate these penstemon plants, but remember to gradually expose them to outdoor challenges if you’re planning on having them outside. This means hardening them against wind, sun, and dryness, in addition to having protection for the first week outdoors. Nonetheless, take comfort in the fact that penstemon is resistant to heat, drought, and animals

 

 

Conclusion

Whether you collected them yourself or purchased them, you should be excited to root penstemon seeds. It can be overwhelming to learn how to grow penstemon from seed, especially when some species require pre-germination treatments. However, the process of growing the plant itself only takes three steps, and you can consider the pre-germination treatments as an added gardener skill.

Start by collecting the seeds and store it for six months before you begin sowing. And while not all species require a pre-germination treatment, both stratification and scarification are reasonably easy methods to do anyway. You can then plant the penstemon where it receives rain and snow and has shade for sunlight. 

They should grow by spring and be ready to transplant in the permanent areas by the middle of the season. Overall, growing crops from seeds can be daunting, but don’t get discouraged by the methods for breaking dormancy in some seeds. You can also use the greenhouse to make the germination easier and faster by providing the optimal conditions. 

 

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How Long Do Azalea Bushes Bloom?

How Long Do Azalea Bushes Bloom?

If you’re trying to grow azaleas, you’re probably asking this question: How long do azalea bushes bloom? Before we get into that, you need to know more about this evergreen shrub.

 

Azaleas: The Basics

Countless gardening enthusiasts love azaleas because their presence can bring any garden to life. With their healthy and glossy green foliage and their brightly colored blooms that come in a variety of petal shapes, this type of rhododendron serves as one of the heralds of spring.

Although this favored garden guests come in many kinds, not all varieties can grow in the same region. However, as long as you choose the right tup of azalea variety, soil, as well as weather, and watering conditions, you can be sure that your azaleas will have what they need to thrive well and produce lots of flowers for months.

Among their distinguishing characteristics are their glossy, deep green-colored leaves that have small hairs on their surface. Furthermore, azaleas also feature single flowers instead of clusters.

 

Factors to Consider When You’re Growing Azaleas

Azaleas might be pretty, but if you’re not so sure about the factors you have to consider when you’re growing them, you won’t be able to make the most out of these plants.

 

Factor #1: They need a little love to get the best color

Azaleas may be one of the most reliable plants in your garden, but if you want them to show off their best colors and keep on producing the flowers you love, you need to give them some TLC. You can have the most blooms if you make sure that they get enough sun and get watered properly and on a regular basis.

 

Factor #2: The weather can influence their growth

Did you know that the weather conditions play a critical role in the bloom of your azalea? In case you’re not aware, the number of flowers they produce and the length of time they produce them are greatly affected when the temperatures dip. Expect their actual bloom dates to vary about a week or two.

The warmer the weather, the earlier their blooms erupt. What’s more, azaleas planted in these warmer areas bloom again in the fall.

 

Factor #3: There are over 900 species of them

You might be surprised to know that while azaleas have more than 900 species out there, you can find over 20,000 hybrids of Rhododendron spp., as well as azaleas. These all come in various shapes and sizes.

You can find azaleas that are both tall and spiky or bushy and small. They could look like they hug the ground or they could produce waves of gorgeous flowers dotting its canopy of deep green foliage.

 

How Long Do Azalea Bushes Bloom?

Generally, an azalea plant produces spectacular blooms for a period of three weeks during springtime. However, other types of azaleas also show off their gorgeous flowers during the summer depending on the region where they grow, as well as the weather.

In maritime and mild climates, the flowering season for azalea plants can be extended up to a period of seven months. On the other hand, azaleas that are planted in colder climates tend to have a shorter blooming time which could only range between three weeks to three months.

It’s best to select a type of azalea that blooms well during the milder months of the area where you plant them. To make this happen, make sure that you feed your azaleas with a balanced 15-15-15 fertilizer. In case you’re wondering, azalea plants will do well if they get more nitrogen.

 

 

Grow Your Precious Plants in a Mini Greenhouse!

If you don’t have enough space in your backyard, you might want to grow your plants in a mini greenhouse. Greenhouse gardening offers you loads of benefits that can help you take your gardening experience to the next level! Here are some of them:

 

Protection against bad weather conditions

Since a mini greenhouse is an enclosed space, you won’t have to worry about your plants when Mother Nature unleashes her fury. While other traditional outdoor gardeners get caught up making emergency preparations to ensure their plants’ safety, you can just sit back and wait for the storm to pass.

 

It keeps the pests and vermin away

Having a mini greenhouse can be a huge plus when it comes to protecting your plants from different types of destructive insects and animals. Your mini greenhouse serves as a barrier between your indoor garden and the pests.

 

You can control your plants’ growing environment

Creating an optimal growing environment for your plants will be much easier for you if you keep them in a mini greenhouse. Controlling the temperature, heat, and humidity levels inside the enclosed space won’t be difficult for you. What’s more, you can also choose to introduce beneficial insects to your garden to help your plant babies thrive well.

 

Extended growing seasons

With a mini greenhouse, you can effortlessly extend your plants’ growing seasons. It allows you to grow certain types of plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

Now that you finally know the answer to “How long do azalea bushes bloom?”, you might want to experience the wonderful benefits of greenhouse gardening today!

 

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