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Shooting Star Seed Propagation – How And When To Plant Shooting Star Seeds

Shooting Star Seed Propagation – How And When To Plant Shooting Star Seeds


By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Also known as American cowslip, shootingstar (Dodecatheon meadia)is a perennial wildflower native to the Pacific Northwest and other areas ofthe United States. Shooting star gets its name from the star-shaped,downward-facing blooms that appear in late spring and early summer. Hardy toUSDA plant zones 4 through 8, shooting star prefers partial or full shade. Thislovely little woodland or mountain plant usually disappears completely whentemperatures rise in summer.

Growing shooting star from seed is the easiest way ofpropagation. Let’s learn more about shooting star seed propagation.

When to Plant Shooting Star Seeds

Plant shooting star seeds directly in the garden. The timeof year for planting depends on your climate.

Plant after the last frost in spring if you live wherewinters are cold.

Plant in autumn if your area has mild winters. This allowsyour shooting star plants to get established while temperatures are cool.

How to Plant Shooting Star Seeds

Prepare the bed a couple of weeks ahead of time by tillinglightly or digging about an inch (2.5 cm.) deep. Remove rocks and clumps andrake the soil smooth.

Sprinkle seeds over the area, and then press them into thesoil by walking over the planted area. You can also place cardboard over thearea, then step on the cardboard.

If you’re planting seeds in spring, shooting star seedgermination is more likely if you stratify the seeds first. This is especiallyimportant if you harvested the seeds from plants in autumn. (You may not needto stratify purchased seeds, as they are probably pre-stratified, but alwaysread the instructions on the seed packet).

Here’s how to stratify shooting star seeds:

Mix the seeds in a plastic bag with moist sand, vermiculiteor sawdust, then place the bag in the refrigerator or other cool location for30 days. The temperature should be above freezing but under 40 F. (4 C.).

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Read more about Shooting Star Flowers


Growing Shooting Star From Seed?

Has anyone grown shooting star from seed before? How long to get some substantial sized plants? How do they do if they are transplanted?

I have a bunch of shooting star seed and there are some areas in the woods behind me that were disturbed by construction last year. I would like to plant it there as well as some other natives in those areas. Would it be best to just put the seed there or better to start them at home?

I think what you have there is Dodecatheon. I've got them here. They take a while to establish and they also take a while to germinate. Based on my personal experiences with Dodecatheon, you need a period of cold moist stratification of 90 days. Once you've taken care of that, you can plant them out but I've noticed that about half of the seed germinates the first year and half the next year after another period of cold moist stratification. This plant is not listed as a double dormancy seed but for me about half the seed germinates the first year and half the next. I now hand broadcast the seed into the area where I want it to grow. I've got some out there right now that I tossed out there the first snowfall we had of the year. Heads up, English house sparrows and European starlings love the seed so if you are going to go out and try to broadcast seed direct, wait until our weather forecast states it is going to snow. If you sow while it is snowing, better odds of more seed not being eaten. I do this with a lot of seed to protect it from those two species of birds.

When I winter sowed them, I covered them up with an ever so thin layer of the medium. When I broadcast them outside, I didn't cover them with soil.

I've got several different species of Dodecatheon. None of them bloomed the first year. They're busy putting down roots and establishing themselves the first year. In year 2 you won't get any blooms either but maybe by year 3 and usually by year 4.

I'm sort of hoping when you mention planting them in the woods behind you that you own those woods. If not, let me know where you are located and I will look up who the land steward is to the woods behind you and give you their contact information. The state and counties of Illinois are trying to use local genotype seed when ever possible when establishing plants in natural areas and if there is already a population of Dodecatheon on that property somewhere, the land steward may not want a genotype of Dodecatheon from say southern Illinois, Iowa, or Michigan. They're going to want to try to keep the gene pool clean and they'll also want to know exactly which Dodecatheon you have.

Great spring ephemeral. I love mine. Does take about 5-6 years to get a substantial sized plant though providing it likes where it is planted.

I have grown Dodecatheon for quite a few years, and Eqilibrium has it down pretty well. The plants are tiny the first year, and take on a little more size in the second year. I have gotten them to bloom in 3 years in the greenhouse, but it would take longer outside. I have about 1,000 plants of the amethystinum and 500 of meadia. I have found that generally with tiny seeds the mortality rate of the seedlings is a lot higher outside since conditions are not as ideal, and it is easy for the seeds to get eaten, washed out, stepped on, etc. If you have a lot of seed you might try throwing it out and seeing what happens. If you have just a little, you might want to start it indoors. The hard part about indoors is that it only is green for a few months in the spring, and then goes dormant again (that is why it is so slow), so shuffling brown pots of dirt for a few years is kind of difficult. and it is so easy to forget about them!

Do you know exactly which species you have? I am always looking for new species.

By greenhouse do you mean a temperate greenhouse or a hoophouse?

I have a heated greenhouse where I start my plants

Ok, I understand. You're just starting them in a heated greenhouse not growing them year round in it.


Plants→Hoyas→Shooting Star Hoya (Hoya multiflora)

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit:Shrub
Cactus/Succulent
Vine
Life cycle:Perennial
Sun Requirements:Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Minimum cold hardiness:Zone 10a -1.1 °C (30 °F) to +1.7 °C (35 °F)
Plant Height :18-24 inches
Plant Spread :12 inches
Leaves:Evergreen
Flowers:Showy
Flower Color:Bi-Color: White and yellow
Bloom Size:2"-3"
Flower Time:Late winter or early spring
Spring
Late spring or early summer
Summer
Late summer or early fall
Fall
Late fall or early winter
Propagation: Other methods:Cuttings: Stem
Containers:Needs excellent drainage in pots

This Hoya shooting star prefers to sit literally in water. In our dry and hot weather, I guess the plant requires that for its humidity needs. If it gets too dry while a peduncle is growing or attempting to make buds, it will blast, so that moisture requirement is very important. The flowers flow with sugary sap, so remember that when you position your plants indoors. I usually find this plant more actively producing peduncles and buds when our temps hover in the low to mid 80's, but once it starts running into the higher 90's outside, somehow the plant senses it and it will abort any growth. Just the same, I keep the container sitting in water, so the plant will not languish. I grow this plant indoors near our west-facing window, protected by our white curtain, during the hottest part of the day and with the ceiling fan constantly running during the hot summer days.

When cooler temps arrive in winter, I do not allow it to sit in water.

This is an unusual and interesting Hoya, so different looking from many other Hoyas. I received my plant in a trade and it did very well for a couple of years and then suddenly withered and died.


Dodecatheon amethystinum Amethyst Shooting Star

Map Key

This map shows the native and introduced (adventive) range of this species. Given appropriate habitat and climate, native plants can be grown outside their range.

1 Question asked on Dodecatheon amethystinum

SEED:

Growing your own plants from seed is the most economical way to add natives to your home. Before you get started, one of the most important things to know about the seeds of wild plants is that many have built-in dormancy mechanisms that prevent the seed from germinating. In nature, this prevents a population of plants from germinating all at once, before killing frosts, or in times of drought. To propagate native plants, a gardener must break this dormancy before seed will grow.

Each species is different, so be sure to check the GERMINATION CODE listed on the website, in the catalog, or on your seed packet. Then, follow the GERMINATION INSTRUCTIONS prior to planting. Some species don't need any pre-treatment to germinate, but some species have dormancy mechanisms that must be broken before the seed will germinate. Some dormancy can be broken in a few minutes, but some species take months or even years.

Seed dormancy can be broken artificially by prolonged refrigeration of damp seed in the process of cold/moist STRATIFICATION. A less complicated approach is to let nature handle the stratifying through a dormant seeding, sowing seeds on the surface of a weed-free site in late fall or winter. Tucked safely beneath the snow, seeds will be conditioned by weathering to make germination possible in subsequent growing seasons.

To learn more, read our BLOG: How to Germinate Native Seeds

DORMANT BARE ROOT PLANTS:

We dig plants when they are dormant from our outdoor beds and ship them April-May and October. Some species go dormant in the summer and we can ship them July/August. We are among the few still employing this production method, which is labor intensive but plant-friendly. They arrive to you dormant, with little to no top-growth (bare-root), packed in peat moss. They should be planted as soon as possible. Unlike greenhouse-grown plants, bare-root plants can be planted during cold weather or anytime the soil is not frozen. A root photo is included with each species to illustrate the optimal depth and orientation. Planting instructions/care are also included with each order.

POTTED PLANTS:

Trays of 38 plants and 3-packs leave our Midwest greenhouse based on species readiness (well-rooted for transit) and based on order date Spring shipping is typically early-May through June, and Fall shipping is late-August through September. Plant cells are approximately 2” wide x 5” deep in the trays, and 2.5" wide x 3.5" deep in the 3-packs ideal for deep-rooted natives. Full-color tags and planting instructions/care are included with each order.

Shipping & Handling Charges:

BARE ROOT and POTTED PLANTS $50.00 and under: $7.50
over $50.00: 15% of the total plant cost
(for orders over $1,000 a package signature may be required)

TOOLS and BOOKS have the shipping fee included in the cost of the product (within the contiguous US).

**We are required to collect state sales tax in certain states. Your state's eligibility and % will be calculated at checkout. MN State Sales Tax of 7.375% is applied for orders picked up at our MN location. Shipping & handling charges are also subject to the sales tax.

Shipping Season:

SEED, TOOLS and BOOKS are sent year-round. Most orders ship within a day or two upon receipt.

BARE ROOT PLANTS are shipped during optimal transplanting time: Spring (April-May) and Fall (Oct). Some ephemeral species are also available for summer shipping. Since our plants are field-grown, Nature sets the schedule each year as to when our season will begin and end. We fill all orders, on a first-come, first-serve basis, to the best of our ability depending on weather conditions beyond our control.

POTTED PLANTS (Trays of 38 and 3-packs) typically begin shipping early May and go into June shipping time is heavily dependent on all the species in your order being well-rooted. If winter-spring greenhouse growing conditions are favorable and all species are well-rooted at once, then we ship by order date (first come, first serve). We are a Midwest greenhouse, and due to the challenges of getting all the species in the Mix & Match and Pre-Designed Garden Kits transit-ready at the same time, we typically can't ship before early May. Earlier shipment requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

*We are unable to ship PLANTS (bare root or potted) outside the contiguous US or to CALIFORNIA due to regulations.

Delivery:

We ship using USPS, UPS and Spee Dee. UPS and Spee Dee are often used for expediting plant orders they will not deliver to Post Office Box numbers, so please also include your street address if ordering plants. We send tracking numbers to your email address so please include it when you order.

FOR MORE DETAILED SHIPPING INFORMATION, INCLUDING CANADA SHIPPING RATES (SEED ONLY), PLEASE SEE 'SHIPPING' AT THE FOOTER OF THIS WEBSITE.


Dodecatheon pulchellum Southern Shooting Star

Map Key

This map shows the native and introduced (adventive) range of this species. Given appropriate habitat and climate, native plants can be grown outside their range.

SEED:

Growing your own plants from seed is the most economical way to add natives to your home. Before you get started, one of the most important things to know about the seeds of wild plants is that many have built-in dormancy mechanisms that prevent the seed from germinating. In nature, this prevents a population of plants from germinating all at once, before killing frosts, or in times of drought. To propagate native plants, a gardener must break this dormancy before seed will grow.

Each species is different, so be sure to check the GERMINATION CODE listed on the website, in the catalog, or on your seed packet. Then, follow the GERMINATION INSTRUCTIONS prior to planting. Some species don't need any pre-treatment to germinate, but some species have dormancy mechanisms that must be broken before the seed will germinate. Some dormancy can be broken in a few minutes, but some species take months or even years.

Seed dormancy can be broken artificially by prolonged refrigeration of damp seed in the process of cold/moist STRATIFICATION. A less complicated approach is to let nature handle the stratifying through a dormant seeding, sowing seeds on the surface of a weed-free site in late fall or winter. Tucked safely beneath the snow, seeds will be conditioned by weathering to make germination possible in subsequent growing seasons.

To learn more, read our BLOG: How to Germinate Native Seeds

DORMANT BARE ROOT PLANTS:

We dig plants when they are dormant from our outdoor beds and ship them April-May and October. Some species go dormant in the summer and we can ship them July/August. We are among the few still employing this production method, which is labor intensive but plant-friendly. They arrive to you dormant, with little to no top-growth (bare-root), packed in peat moss. They should be planted as soon as possible. Unlike greenhouse-grown plants, bare-root plants can be planted during cold weather or anytime the soil is not frozen. A root photo is included with each species to illustrate the optimal depth and orientation. Planting instructions/care are also included with each order.

POTTED PLANTS:

Trays of 38 plants and 3-packs leave our Midwest greenhouse based on species readiness (well-rooted for transit) and based on order date Spring shipping is typically early-May through June, and Fall shipping is late-August through September. Plant cells are approximately 2” wide x 5” deep in the trays, and 2.5" wide x 3.5" deep in the 3-packs ideal for deep-rooted natives. Full-color tags and planting instructions/care are included with each order.

Shipping & Handling Charges:

BARE ROOT and POTTED PLANTS $50.00 and under: $7.50
over $50.00: 15% of the total plant cost
(for orders over $1,000 a package signature may be required)

TOOLS and BOOKS have the shipping fee included in the cost of the product (within the contiguous US).

**We are required to collect state sales tax in certain states. Your state's eligibility and % will be calculated at checkout. MN State Sales Tax of 7.375% is applied for orders picked up at our MN location. Shipping & handling charges are also subject to the sales tax.

Shipping Season:

SEED, TOOLS and BOOKS are sent year-round. Most orders ship within a day or two upon receipt.

BARE ROOT PLANTS are shipped during optimal transplanting time: Spring (April-May) and Fall (Oct). Some ephemeral species are also available for summer shipping. Since our plants are field-grown, Nature sets the schedule each year as to when our season will begin and end. We fill all orders, on a first-come, first-serve basis, to the best of our ability depending on weather conditions beyond our control.

POTTED PLANTS (Trays of 38 and 3-packs) typically begin shipping early May and go into June shipping time is heavily dependent on all the species in your order being well-rooted. If winter-spring greenhouse growing conditions are favorable and all species are well-rooted at once, then we ship by order date (first come, first serve). We are a Midwest greenhouse, and due to the challenges of getting all the species in the Mix & Match and Pre-Designed Garden Kits transit-ready at the same time, we typically can't ship before early May. Earlier shipment requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

*We are unable to ship PLANTS (bare root or potted) outside the contiguous US or to CALIFORNIA due to regulations.

Delivery:

We ship using USPS, UPS and Spee Dee. UPS and Spee Dee are often used for expediting plant orders they will not deliver to Post Office Box numbers, so please also include your street address if ordering plants. We send tracking numbers to your email address so please include it when you order.

FOR MORE DETAILED SHIPPING INFORMATION, INCLUDING CANADA SHIPPING RATES (SEED ONLY), PLEASE SEE 'SHIPPING' AT THE FOOTER OF THIS WEBSITE.


Watch the video: Growing Hoyas - The Indestructible Houseplant