Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


General information and discussion about cultivating herbs.

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old January 4, 2019   #1
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Omaha Zone 5
Posts: 2,515
Default Tips Needed on Germinating Dill Seeds

I have the opposite situation of a dill invasion. Either mine doesn't come back, or something (besides caterpillars) is eating it while still small.

Any tips for germination? I've tried in situ, nada for me.

I had success one year starting in a pot and planting inground, but I can't duplicate it.
I bit my lip and purchased a plant last year, fortunately it took and reseeded, as in one more plant, very late in the season.

I'd love to grow more and have several varieties ready to go, but how does this magic happen?

- Lisa

Addition: Any winter indoor growers of the shorter varieties?

Last edited by greenthumbomaha; January 4, 2019 at 12:29 AM.
greenthumbomaha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 4, 2019   #2
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Kansas 5b
Posts: 197

If you get a plant growing indoors size isn't a problem, just cut it back to a manageable height and wait for new growth.

Getting it started indoors is sometimes tricky, but it helps to think about what the seed would need if it were growing wild. Most herbs take longer to start indoors than they do planted outdoors, or perhaps I just check about three times as often and it seems that way. If you have plenty of seed try sprouting some on a damp paper towel cut 2x2 or 4x4 square inside a baggie. Put it somewhere where it gets filtered sunlight for a few hours a day. Check it at least once a day to see if you have signs of life and to make sure the paper towel is damp. If you have a magnifying glass it might help the examination. Or if you take a picture with your phone that you can zoom in on it will let you see if there are changes. If you do notice changes fill a 2.25 or 4 inch square pot to within 1/4 inch of the top with damp, lightly compressed potting soil. Tamped down, not packed like brown sugar. Put the paper towel on the surface of the pot, seeds up. Sift a uniform layer of seed starter mix on top to just cover the seeds and towel. Mist until the seed starter is damp.

While you're trying the baggie trick you can also just directly sow seed in the corners of the pot your going to use for the baggie seed if it germinates. When you get seed to start remember that herbs, especially the ones that produce lots of seeds, are relatively delicate when getting started. (Lemon balm is an exception, it's easy to establish but hard to get rid of). You don't want to move the pot around much or do anything to disturb the plant until it's more than wisps of green. When watering just mist the soil, not the plant. You want to make sure the surface stays wet/damp. Keeping the whole pot wet isn't important because all the roots are still near the surface. And limited light is enough because plants growing outdoors would still be shaded by last year's dead vegetation at that stage.

Last edited by oldman; January 4, 2019 at 01:41 AM.
oldman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 4, 2019   #3
Whwoz's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Victoria, Australia
Posts: 819

Thanks Oldman, I may not be the op, but Dill is something I grow and have been asked if we can grow it from seed. Great instructions.
Whwoz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 4, 2019   #4
Posts: n/a

Being in Florida I have the luxury of starting seed outside most of the year. I started the dill in a tray using whatever seed mix I had on hand, transplanted to the general garden once a few inches high. I’ve let it self-seed since then. (Same for lemon basil, cilantro, borage, cerinthe, nasturtiums & arugula)
The herbs are all part of the plant guilds under the fruit trees. It’s been wet for the last 6 weeks; I’ve noticed a lot of sprouting as a result. I haven’t had good luck with dill or parsley in the past unless the seed was very fresh. With basil I still see germination on seed a few years old.
- Joyce
  Reply With Quote
Old January 4, 2019   #5
Worth1's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Den of Drunken Fools
Posts: 38,539

Never had a problem getting it to come up outside by rather crude direct sowing.
Worth1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 5, 2019   #6
bower's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Posts: 6,784

I believe dill is one of the ones that needs light to germinate - or germinates better if uncovered.

I tried starting them for micros last year, then realized it was not going to be dense enough for that kind of a cut, so I potted them into sandpails (deep for their roots) and we had some nicely dense foot high dill for cutting for awhile. That did fine under lights. The micros I seeded without soil on top and iirc I alternated them warm/dark and daylight. The dill that did sprout were faster than cilantro or parsely - but that may be freshness of seed. All of them require patience, even if fresh! I forget which ones prefer light vs darkness, but all of them got misted twice a day - i think they have germination inhibitors in the seed coats and so the idea, to mist em hard, and soak it off them eventually...
bower is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 5, 2019   #7
HudsonValley's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Hudson Valley, NY, Zone 6a
Posts: 626

Here’s my method for dill: Soak seeds 12-24 hours, avoid using heat mat (temp of 60-70 degrees F is best), barely cover, germinate under light with Saran Wrap over container to avoid drying out.
HudsonValley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 5, 2019   #8
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Plantation, Florida zone 10
Posts: 9,283

Screen shot of Botanical interests sowing instructions for dill. Dill needs light for germination. And moisture.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Screenshot_20190105-222214.jpg (188.8 KB, 81 views)
ginger2778 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 5, 2019   #9
Gardeneer's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: NC - zone 8a - heat zone 7
Posts: 4,904

Last fall i sowed some dill directly in the garden. They came on their own term. And they were super.,without bolting. The seed were from my own saved, from summer crop.
Being cool crop, they stood temps down to 24F.
The same applied to fenugreek. This is the herb that East Indians , Meditereans, Chinese .... use a lot in cooking with meat.

Happy Gardening !
Gardeneer is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:12 AM.

★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★