I got myself a coffee table for the balcony which I can also use for re-potting and other jobs like that.
Coffee/ Re-potting Table
One of my co-workers wants some of the seedlings (stone pine and ginkgo so far), so I prepared them for her. I got some bonsai soil, too, because she wants to give it a try and I will need it anyway. The pine seedling on the photograph is the one from the video.
One of the Granny Smith’s Apple seedlings came out nice after the first pruning, so I’m keeping it as well.
I had actually planned on sowing rapini (broccoli raab) – I had ordered some seeds and they had arrived yesterday – but the sowing period is July to September. What a disappointment.
Either I have accidentally turned the seed while re-potting them and this is the root coming up or it is the Ginkgo’s attempt to grow properly. I will see on Sunday, because I’m going away for the weekend.
Yesterday, I got one of the medlar fruits from their stratification container on my balcony, because it is too warm during daytime anyway to call it stratification. I put the seeds into water overnight and sowed them today.
I also gave the ginkgo seeds from the egg carton pots proper pots, because the egg carton had started to rot and I was a bit concerned about my health. And I put the date seed that had germinated in vermiculite into a proper pot with proper soil. (Sorry for labelling the medlar seeds as “quince”, I had forgotten the name in English.) I only cut the egg carton “compartments” apart and put them into the new pots with the soil and the seeds.
medlar, date and ginkgo pots
Then I prepared a little something for my co-worker from Sicily. He had shown interest in the lemon seedlings, so I’m giving him one and one of the two pine seedlings. They’re his favourite tree.
I took the remaining four ginkgo seeds from the fridge today and sowed them into those little clay pots. I cracked the shells of two of them (the ones with the s-shape sign on the label) to see which ones might sprout earlier.
Gingko sown today
With this action, my greenhouses are completely full.
I encountered a bit of a snag when I entered the source code into the Raspberry Pi command console: I wanted to take pictures for 40 days, but apparently somewhere between 21 and 28 days, there’s a limit. So I settled for 21 days. However, I have already made a note in my calender 21 days from now to restart the sequence. A picture will be taken every 2 hours.
This morning when I checked all my pots, I couldn’t believe what I saw: A crack in the soil in one of the egg carton pots that holds ginkgo seeds! Should one of the ginkgo seeds be germinating?
Ginkgo Seed Germinating?
Anyway, it seems that it is germinating after all, because the cracks has gotten larger since this morning. I’m really excited about it, because those seeds have only been in the soil for three weeks and they supposedly only germinate after three months. I will add this to my overview of all germination periods in a minute.
I could only be more excited, if the olive seeds would finally germinate.
However, this discovery made me think: Didn’t I have more than 6 ginkgo seeds? I’m glad that I write this blog, because I’m very forgetful (should take some ginkgo medicine…), because that way I could read that I put 5 into the fridge. I checked them and the paper towel already looked very mouldy. I opened it and found one seed completely moulded. So I took it out and dumped it. I cleaned the others and gave them a new paper towel, because they have to stay in stratification for another week.
Last weekend, I wanted to order some pine seeds from Ebay, because my last attempt to get them to germinate failed epically. To make the shipping costs more worthwhile, I checked out this guy’s shop and found Ginkgo seeds. I didn’t have Ginkgo biloba on my wishlist, but this is such a cool tree and I think the oldest species around. So why not? I was curious what the seeds would look like, but didn’t really have a mental image or something. This living fossil was declared Tree of the Millenium in Germany, but I couldn’t find which millenium. Too bad.
I had ordered 10, but there were 11 in the bag, probably because one of the shells was already broken so much that the seed almost fell out.
Sowing Ginkgo Seeds
It said on the instruction that came with the seeds to put them in the fridge for 4 weeks at 4-5°C (39-41°F). I think I measured once that my fridge has 8°C. Anyway, I cracked the quite soft and thin shells a bit with the back-end of a knife and put half of them into a wet paper towel and into a plastic box with a lid and into the fridge. (I will read my fridge manual tomorrow, if I can find it.) The other half I put into warm water and will let it soak for 24 hours. That was also suggested in the instruction, but for after the 4 week period of stratification.
Ginkgo Seeds on wet paper towel
Wet Paper towel folded together
Soaking Ginkgo Seeds
That was the day before yesterday. Today I put the six seeds having been soaked overnight into soil. Yesterday, I put them into the egg carton nursery pots I had come up with yesterday. The minute I had put them in, I remembered that I had just 5 minutes earlier thought it a stupid idea to put them into a bio-degradable pot because of their long germination period. Well, too late. I will be more considerate with the ones in stratification. The instruction doesn’t say anything about the germination period and temperature, but I read in another blog that the ideal temperature is 21-24°C (70-75°F). It suggested sand, so I will hopefully remember to use a mixture of sand and potting compost. (I forgot about that yesterday…)