Narcissus papyraceus

Jane McGary
Tue, 10 Nov 2009 15:17:29 PST
Leo asked,
>My paperwhite narcissus ... I've collected self-set seed in years 
>past but never gotten around to
>sowing any. Does it need to be sown quickly? If not, how best to store it?
>And how long does it retain viability? What is the best way to germinate
>paperwhite narcissus seed?

Narcissus species are usually very easy to grow from seed, which 
germinates best if it is sown in early fall. It doesn't have to be 
sown immediately and indeed is probably best kept stored until fall. 
The seed is rather fragile so should be protected from crushing when 
shipped. I don't refrigerate any seeds from my summer-dormant bulbs, 
I just put them in paper envelopes and keep them in cool room 
temperatures. I don't know how long the seed remains viable after the 
first summer, but it would always be worth a try. If Leo wants to 
give his old stored seed to the BX, it should be described as old 
seed and the packets should have a large quantity in each. I have 
grown many of my narcissus from seed purchased from the Archibalds 
that was collected in Spain several months before they shipped it to 
me for planting in October.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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