En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - July 23, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Cold moist stratification of Echinacea purpurea
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I was looking at your info on Purple Coneflowers and it says: "Seed Treatment: Cold-moist stratification for two months improves germination." What is Cold-moist stratification? Thanks.

ANSWER:

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower) is a wonderful, easily grown native plant, occurring in many parts of the United States. Besides being a beautiful, tall flower, it attracts butterflies, and if the blooms are not dead-headed too quickly, the seeds in the large cone-shaped center will invite birds to dine.

To raise the percentage of success when you are trying to propagate the coneflower, cold moist stratification is sometimes advised. Let me refer you to a previous article by Mr. Smarty Plants on the process of cold moist stratification. Cold stratification involves mixing seeds with an equal amount of a moist medium (like sand) in a closed container and storing in a refrigerator at about 40 deg. Check from time to time to make sure the medium is moist but not wet. However, you should note that this type of dormancy may be satisfied naturally if seeds are sown outdoors in the fall. In other words, let Nature take its course.

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

More Propagation Questions

Adventitious sprouts on oak tree in Austin
April 26, 2010 - Hello, I have an Oak tree which was planted in about 2002, which has adventitious sprouts. The tree has always sent these up, and we cut them off below ground. The tree has always been a 'runt', b...
view the full question and answer

Yucca sprouting shoots in Oxfordshire, England
July 11, 2010 - I have a 20ft outdoor yucca with four huge branches.It is 11 years old. For the first time it has sprouted two side shoots on one of the trunks. They are about 12 inches in length. What is the best wa...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting wild sumac
September 23, 2010 - About a month ago I dug up five sumac from my backyard in Aylmer Quebec. I potted them. They now look dead. I wanted to transplant them at my cottage in Barrie Ontario. Can I still transplant them...
view the full question and answer

Grooming and propagation of Bee Balm
August 28, 2007 - I planted our first Bee Balm [Mornarda didyma] bush a month ago. I`ve watered it daily and it is growing well with many runners apparent. Should I be deheading or pinching regularly? Should I cut it ...
view the full question and answer

Protecting agave pups in San Antonio
April 23, 2013 - I would like to share the soon to happen bloom of two century plants on my property; they are sisters planted at the same time. I am sad to know they will die but will do all that I can to protect the...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center