germinating Rainlily seed

Nhu Nguyen
Tue, 31 Dec 2013 09:14:10 PST
I think it makes lots of sense that seeds coming from Thailand would have
inoculum on the surface. This usually results from the seeds not being
dried out fast enough.

Peroxide is an alternative to bleach, but if treated the same way (i.e. 5
min of soaking), it is not as effective. Bleach if used right is very
effective. I have tried both bleach and peroxide for the most delicate of
seeds -- orchid seeds, and bleach works wonders, whereas peroxide always
gives me contamination. However, bleach can also be very powerful and if
soaked too long, the seeds will suffer and not germinate.

If you are going the peroxide route, I suggest adding a drop of mild
detergent to your solution, drop in the seeds, and agitate while soaking.
If you have germinated flat, black amaryllid seeds in water, you will
notice that sometimes a film of air forms in between the surface of the
seeds and the water. This film of air will prevent the peroxide solution
from reaching and sterilizing the seed coat. Adding a drop of detergent
will break up the surface tension of the water/peroxide and give you a
better sterilization.

By the way, I have only tried to surface sterilize dried amaryllid seeds
several times when I first started out growing bulbs. For years now, I've
had really good success with flash sterilization/steaming/microwaving of
seed sowing media. I rarely have the issue of damping off. Like Peter said,
perhaps reducing the pathogen load and not complete sterilization is enough
for the seedlings to survive.

I don't suggest using fungicide in the soil. I don't know of any
experimental evidence, but there have been many anecdotal evidence that
when you grow a seedling in a microbial rich environment, they will grow up
healthier and less dependent on fungicides. The weak ones will be selected
against and die out, leaving you with the most vigorous plants. This is
natural selection in the garden.


On Tue, Dec 31, 2013 at 10:20 AM, Alberto <> wrote:

> Peroxide sounds most effective. Fungicide use even at minute doses is
> known to have  a bad effect on germination.

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