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 - June 13, 2011

From: Clifton, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Collecting seeds for Texas Bluebell from Clifton TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

How and when should I try and collect seeds from the Texas Bluebell?

ANSWER:

We are going to assume that you mean Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum (Texas bluebells). There is another plant, Campanula reverchonii (Basin bellflower) that has as one of its common names Texas Bluebell, but we doubt that is the one you want. In Bosque County, you are not far from Washington County, where the famous creamery was named after the bluebell, so we are assuming you have stands of this plant available in your area for collecting seeds. This USDA Plant Profile Map shows that is indeed the case.

From our Native Plant Database page (which read) here are the Propagation Instructions:

"Propagation Material: Seeds
Description: The seed is exceptionally small and somewhat difficult to germinate. The best results have come from surface seeding (since the seed requires light for germination) in flats at approximately 70 - 75 degrees. Field seeding can be done in spring or fall, however, spring germination usually results in the vegetative growth overwintering and not flowering until the second summer. Fall germination should produce flowers the first season.
Seed Collection: Collect seed when seeds inside the capsule are black.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: When the seed capsule ripens (in September or October), the stalk should be cut back to 2 - 3 inches above the ground. By mid September, the base will develop a cluster of 8 to 10 new shoots. These will remain as a cluster of leaves throughout the winter and resume growth in the spring. Plants that overwinter are usually much stronger and have more flowers than they do the first year."

 

From the Image Gallery


Texas bluebells
Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum

Texas bluebells
Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum

Texas bluebells
Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum

Basin bellflower
Campanula reverchonii

More Propagation Questions

Controlling agave pups from Galveston, TX
July 26, 2013 - I live in Galveston, Tx.I have several large 5ft tall century plants in my yard and the pups are coming up everywhere..how do I control these??? HELP!!
view the full question and answer

No berries on dogwoods in GA
November 18, 2010 - I have 4 native dogwood trees. I have owned the property for 4 years. They have never produced berries. Can you tell me why? are the trees male and female, and could I have all males?
view the full question and answer

Planting orange-flowered asclepias in Austin
March 15, 2011 - I have asclepias seeds of the orange flower variety and would like to plant them. What should I do for the best success, and how long does it take for them to come up?
view the full question and answer

Propagating a magnolia by cuttings in Rochester, NY
May 15, 2009 - How can I start a magnolia snip from my already existing tree, to grow another one from it, like a starter to pass on to someone?
view the full question and answer

When can bluebonnet seeds in freezer be planted in Midland TX
January 12, 2010 - I have a large pkg of bluebonnets in my freezer that I had planned to plant in October and forgot. Is January too late for Bluebonnets to come up in March-April? A year ago in Spring my brother and I...
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