Dactylopsis from seed

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David1971
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Dactylopsis from seed

Postby David1971 » Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:25 pm

Hi everybody,

After several years growing mesembs from different genera, it is time to waste time and money trying the impossible. I've got some seeds of Dactylopsis digitata and was wondering if someone who has experience with this species could share some tips to increase the probability of success somewhat above zero :smile:
Thanks!
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D^L
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby D^L » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:10 pm

I usually get very low germination rates. When I discussed this Steve Hammer a number of years ago he said that they came up "like mustard and cress", if the seed was fairly fresh. He intimated that much seed in the trade was unlikely to be fresh enough. There may be excellent suppliers about, where where you can get fresh seed but I have only once had decent germination, with seed directly from a grower that generated the seed themselves. I don't believe the tale about their needing a salty soil to grow.
Cheers
David Lambie
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David1971
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby David1971 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:51 am

D^L wrote:I usually get very low germination rates. When I discussed this Steve Hammer a number of years ago he said that they came up "like mustard and cress", if the seed was fairly fresh. He intimated that much seed in the trade was unlikely to be fresh enough. There may be excellent suppliers about, where where you can get fresh seed but I have only once had decent germination, with seed directly from a grower that generated the seed themselves. I don't believe the tale about their needing a salty soil to grow.
Cheers
David Lambie

Thanks for your answer David. I have read that germination isn't the main problem with this species, but maintaining the seedlings alive. Seeds came from the Mesemb Study Group, so in this case I have no reason to doubt about their quality.
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Terry S.
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby Terry S. » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:23 am

Thank you David for your flattering support for MSG seed, however we are not infallible. We are at the mercy of wholesalers too and the Dactylopsis seed from last year originated from a South African dealer. I suspect that it could be traced back to Kwaggaskop farm and Kokkerboom Nursery which seems to be a source of much Knersvlakte seed. We are lucky with mesembs because most of the seed is so long-lived and if there is trouble with germination then it is more likely to be too fresh than too old. I do not have personal experience with Dactylopsis, but if it needs to be fresh seed then that would be extremely unusual amongst mesembs.
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Aiko
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby Aiko » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:19 am

I don't have any bad experience getting Dactylopsis germinating from seed, seed originating from different sources. The trouble starts to get them bigger after that, at least for me. I do have one small 'big' plant, than I have kept going for a few years now. Probably more in stasis than really growing, let alone thriving. But it is emerging from summer dormancy for a few summers now, so I must be doing something good. I treat it the same as Muiria.

Muiria does sort of grow well for me. I haven't had it in flower, but growing quite nicely. Treating as Muiria for me means to very regularly give it light splashes of water from August to (about) May. Just a short summer dormancy. This is not to say you should treat it like that, but for me it at least stays alive.
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D^L
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby D^L » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:09 pm

Good point Terry, that mesemb seed usually has a long shelf life. I was reporting my memory of Steve's comments. I think he actually might have just said that commercial seed was often poor without a comment on why.
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David1971
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Re: Dactylopsis from seed

Postby David1971 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:08 pm

I am very thankful to all of you for your comments. I will sow next fall, and if all goes well I hope to have something to show then.
Cheers!

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