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Sunday - May 02, 2010

From: Belton, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Propagation of Gregg's mistflower in Belton, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I would like to know how to plant seeds from Gregg's mistflowers. Can the seeds be planted in the spring, and if so, do they need to be prepared first (soaked overnight, etc)?

ANSWER:

Conoclinium greggii (palmleaf thoroughwort) is one of the many plants that have had a name change of their genus in the last few years, from Eupatorium greggii to Conclinium greggii, which makes looking it up in older references interesting, to say the least. Under the older terminalogy, we found propagation instructions in Jill Nokes' How to Grow Native Plants of Texas and the Southwest (See Bibliography below)

Collecting and Storing the Seed: Collect seeds throughout the Fall, when they have dried and are no longer green. Air dry the seeds a few days before storing in bags or containers in the refrigerator. 

Seeds: Mistflower is easily grown from untreated seeds. Sow the seeds thinly in a seed flat containing loose, well-drained soil. Press them lightly into the soil and just barely cover with a sprinkling of fine sand. Seeds will germinate in 1-2 weeks if daily temperatures average 68-86 deg. Seeds germinate poorly if soil is either too cold or too hot. Best results are achieved if mistflowers are started indoors in early Spring, moved outdoors by early April and given protection. Plants started in early Spring will usually produce blooms by Fall.

Cuttings:  Growing mistflowers from cuttings is the quickest and most reliable method for producing new plants. They readily root from softwood or semi-hardwood cuttings taken in Summer or Fall. Find instructions for taking cuttings in Plant Propagation by Stem Cutting: Instructions for the Home Gardener, from North Carolina State University Horticulture Information Leaflet. 

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