En Español

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - October 28, 2005

From: Winigan, MO
Region: Midwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Storing seed from Pickerel weed
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Michael Eason

QUESTION:

What's the best method to store seed from Pickerel weed (Pontederia cordata) and Arrowhead (Sagattaria latifolia)? Should it be kept wet?

ANSWER:

Our seed expert at the Wildflower Center who works with the Millennium Seed Bank Project says:

"Both are orthodox seeds, which means they can be frozen for long term storage. However, they must be dried prior to freezing (if there is too much water in the seed when they are frozen the freezing process will kill the seed). Bet bet (cheapest) - place a bed of rice in a glass jar, then place the seeds in a paper bag/envelope on top of the bed of rice. The rice will absorb the extra water in the air space, keeping the seeds moisture content a bit lower."

If you want to store them for only a brief time, then they should be spread out to dry on absorbent paper with adequate air circulation above and below them (e.g., put them on paper towels or newspaper on a some sort of rack). When dry, store them in paper (not plastic) bags until ready to plant them.
 

More Propagation Questions

Transplanting a redbud in August from St. Louis MO
August 09, 2011 - I have a 4' tall redbud that needs to be transplanted before the end of August because of construction on our house. Can this be done without killing the tree? Can I take a cutting from the tree and ...
view the full question and answer

Best place for picking wildflowers in Austin
February 14, 2014 - Where is the best place to find wildflowers for picking near or in Austin around the end of March?
view the full question and answer

Propagation of redbuds from shoots in St. Louis MO
July 17, 2009 - I have a beautiful, healthy old redbud tree that I love. Every year, I find baby redbud trees rooted all over my yard, Since they are deep, I can't seem to dig them out so I simply cut them down to...
view the full question and answer

Kinnikinnick for a green roof
July 04, 2012 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I live just north of Seattle and want to build a green roof (outdoor kitchen) I'm concerned about the weight of the soil (saturated), drainage etc. am building from scratch and...
view the full question and answer

Planting Purple Threeawn (Aristida purpurea) and Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium)
October 05, 2007 - Do you have information on planting Purple Threeawn and Little Bluestem? Also are there any inherent problems when planting…things to avoid, etc. Wanting to plant as ornamentals in the North Texas D...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center