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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #1
MuddyToes's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Delaware
Posts: 160
Default Starting Nasturtiums

I have fallen in love with nasturtiums. I bought a pack of Burpee seeds and the package says you can direct sow or start indoors. I was going to start them in jiffy pots because I read they don't like being transplanted. The package also says to file the seeds with a nail file to speed germination. I have never filed a seed before. I am afraid I may damage it. Is this really necessary? Can I just soak them first? Anybody out there ever done this before?
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #2
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Brantford, ON, Canada
Posts: 1,226

I just put the seeds in the ground after the last frost and they grow almost anywhere. I do nothing to the seeds , but tend the planting area by keeping damp. Nasturtiums are beautiful. The flowers are vey tasty and pretty in a salad. Zone 5.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #3
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Laurinburg, North Carolina, zone 7
Posts: 3,046

I've had better luck direct planting nasturtiums.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #4
Join Date: May 2016
Location: West Los Angeles
Posts: 171

I've never done that. I have grown nasturtiums from seed. I give the seeds to my kids and they throw them around on my patio and nasturtiums will pop up all over the patio - in pots, in between cracks. I don't think they are too difficult to germinate. Now the nasturtiums come back every spring and they are all over my patio and my neighbor's.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #5
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Cold hardy zone 4b-5a, Heat zone 4-5, Sunset zone 43
Posts: 146

I soak mine instead of filing, they do just fine. And I've started them in four inch pots and toilet rolls. They also do fine being transplanted as long as they aren't too big or rootbound and you are gentle.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #6
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Zone 8A Texas Heat Zone 9
Posts: 7,657

I'm unsure on the nicking and filing thing too. As you wrote, I'm also afraid of damaging the seed. I know that isn't advice, but it is saying that you are not alone.

(A thought) I wonder what happens in nature that nicks/clips/files a seed to make it germinate?
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #7
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Richland,WA
Posts: 362

I use a nail clipper and just make a small cut on the seed then soak a few hours- they germinate pretty easily.
I like nasturtiums too, but discovered Sweet Peas last year and will grow a lot this year. They tolerate summer heat better than Nasturtiums do- they bloomed all summer. This year I found some at Ace Hdwre- got some tall growers and some that get 12" and don't need anything to climb.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #8
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Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: NewYork 5a
Posts: 790

One of the few things i use those netted pots for. Seeds that don't care for transplanting.
Just two-3 weeks ahead while waiting for warmer soil. I direct seed as well after soaking.
If they spend to long in pots they often do not recover.
Something finds them tasty and not sure what. Maybe bunnies. Flowers and leaves are
edible. Nice in salads.

I use sandpaper. Clipper is a good idea. Just helping to break the hard seed coat.

All a plant wants to do is reproduce. Some rely on going through the warm digestion of a bird
or animal. Or carried off, nicked by teeth, buried, then forgotten about.
If we lose the forest, we lose the insects and the critters, then the animals and all plants become extinct.
All that has evolved to aide in germination is lost.

So many plants produce thousands of seed and only expect a very small natural germination.
Our help with a nick or scrape or controlled soaking only helps increase the %.

I highly recommend this book,Seeds, http://

and his book 'Feathers'. Both fun reads.
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