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Yosuthnmasa

Growing Old Man Palm from seed

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Yosuthnmasa

Folks, new member to the forum but long time lurker!

Have a number of pindo, bottle, spindle, and Chilean wine palm plants I've propagated from seed and are now in pots. Generally start with a 50/50 mix of perlite and spaghnum moss. Have been successful this way using ziplock bags and community growing trays.

Wanted to try my hand at some old man palms from seed. Have tried the above methods unsuccessfully, as well as 100% perlite. I always get a white powder fungus growing on them. I always pretreat my seeds with either hydrogen peroxide or diluted bleach solution and sterilize my growing mediums before sowing. Once the white fungus shows up its hard to get rid of and I'll treat with hydrogen peroxide but this normally doesn't do much. 

Whats the trick I'm missing out here? These are much more finicky than anything else I've grown from seed. Assuming it's because of the outer texture, crevices in these seeds that make them more prone?

My last ditch effort is sowing in 100% coco peat. So far so good.

Thoughts/Advice?

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PalmatierMeg

Perhaps your seeds are old or infertile. Fresh seeds germinate better and are less prone to fungus. You may also keep the seed mix too wet. It should be damp but not soggy. Coccothrinax are generally easy germinators if seeds are good. I don't use baggies for them. I put them just below the surface in a pot of soil mix then leave them outdoors in full sun and wait for nature to do its thing. This genus needs sun and heat. I believe C. crinita does not need as much water as some species. Mine are prone to fungal infections from too much rain. They are not as coldhardy either and show leaf damage from temps in upper 30s/low 40s. I shouldn't have to but will say it anyway: no chance that any species in this genus can survive winter in GA.

Welcome to PalmTalk.

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Yosuthnmasa

PalmatierMeg,

Thanks do so much for the insight! I have family in the Florida keys where I had my first exposure to the old man palm. My plan was to germinate a few then bring to Florida as a gift as my brother loves the large old man palm in his yard.

What kind of growing medium do you use? As I said earlier, I've moved to a 100% coco pete for my medium as I've heard coco pete can be less susceptible to white powder fungus. Checked mine today, which are sown about a quarter inch below the surface and the white fungus is beginning to show up above the seeds in the coco pete. That stuff is unruly and I can't figure out how to get rid of it. I'm currently propagating in house, but may try outside in full sun as you mentioned. Any other tricks in these? No problems like this on any off my other seeds...

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Phoenikakias

What is this outer texture? Could you post a pictures of such a seed? I had recently during past winter germinate in 100% perlite seeds of Leucothrinax morrisii. They were kept in  a dripping wet propagation box at 34 C. I had almost 100% germination. But seeds had been thoroughly cleaned to the glabrous inner coat. Should not be that different to Coccorhrinax crinita seeds and requirements for both may be pretty much the same, as they both are native in the same palmy region.

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PalmatierMeg

I pot in a mixture of palm/cactus soil and extra perlite. Coccothrinax come from areas with poor alkaline soil. I don't get why your seeds are turning moldy - shouldn't happen if they are fresh and ripe. Next to Sabals these are some of the easiest seeds to clean & germinate. Are they cleaned of all fruit?

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Yosuthnmasa

No fruit left, light brown in color, small crevices in seed, almost looks like a miniature brain. Will post a picture when I get back home. Purchased from an extremely reputable dealer online. Come in a clear bag that has a white powdery mix in it.

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TexasColdHardyPalms

I just looked at my germination log. Crinta seeds took 3 weeks to first germinate. Most of them germinated by the 6th week.

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Yosuthnmasa

Here's a few pictures of the seeds

image.jpg

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Yosuthnmasa

Reading back through the recommendations, one thing I haven't tried is heat while propagating. Normally put in dark spot in house in temp range of 68-74. Perhaps additional heat would help?

 

Recently propagated some Jubaea Chilensis using heat. Normally don't use heat, and this seemed to significantly decrease prop time and decreased window of popping.

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PalmatierMeg

Heat will definitely speed them up. This genus loves heat and sun.

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Josh-O
23 hours ago, PalmatierMeg said:

Heat will definitely speed them up. This genus loves heat and sun.

What Meg said is very true. Most coccothrinax species will germinate fairly quickly on bottom heat. I just sprouted a bunch of C. fragrans and it took 4 weeks on bottom heat.

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Phoenikakias
On 14/5/2016, 6:17:24, Yosuthnmasa said:

 

On 26/4/2016, 1:06:07, Phoenikakias said:

What is this outer texture? Could you post a pictures of such a seed? I had recently during past winter germinate in 100% perlite seeds of Leucothrinax morrisii. They were kept in  a dripping wet propagation box at 34 C. I had almost 100% germination. But seeds had been thoroughly cleaned to the glabrous inner coat. Should not be that different to Coccorhrinax crinita seeds and requirements for both may be pretty much the same, as they both are native in the same palmy region.

 

On 14/5/2016, 6:17:24, Yosuthnmasa said:

Here's a few pictures of the seeds

image.jpg

Of course, like I had thought! Those " seeds" are still inside the fruit's flesh. Unless sown for germination in the great outdoors in the constantly fresh air, this is the best opportunity for fungal spread indoors.

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bdaalex

About to try and germinate these seeds for the first time and need some help. I read the above and see my seeds are still in the “fruit”. The very strong, hard to remove fruit. I tried to get the hard flesh off but damaged the seed inside. Pictures of a fresh seed in fruit and the one I tried to open. Any tips?

C98200E4-1A56-45E4-BA95-FBE7E84B163C.jpeg

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maxum2610

Soak the seeds in water until the the outside fruit gets soft and you can easily remove it. This will help the germination also.

Good luck.

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