Sunday, 25 October 2015

08:40 – We did the first check yesterday on the germination tests we’re running on the seeds to be included in the kits. Four days had passed since we started the seeds that had undergone one freeze/thaw transition, and the results were pretty much as expected.

Many of the species showed good germination rates, including barley (94%), basil (90%), dry soldier bean (92%), green bean (100%), Lima bean (73%), beet (93%), broccoli (83%), sweet corn (93%), pea (83%), summer squash (100%), sunflower (93%), tomato (93%), and turnip (84%). Those are all fast-germinating species, and we can get started packaging them for the kits.

Several others showed moderate germination rates, including amaranth (50%), hulless oats (63%), and onion (50%). Those are all slower-germinating species, and we simply returned them to their baggies to allow them more time to germinate. We’ll check them again in a few days, by which time I expect the rates to be noticeably higher.

A few other species showed minor signs of germination, including carrot, dill, oregano, and parsley. Those were just getting started. We’ll check them again in a week or so.

Several species showed no signs of germination, including parsnip, pepper, rosemary, sage, winter squash, St. John’s wort, and thyme. After only four days, that was expected. All of those are very slow to germinate, in some cases taking three weeks or more. We’ll check them all again in a couple of weeks, but I expect all of them to be viable, if slow. Some of them, like parsnip, are very slow to germinate but will show good percentage germination. Others, like rosemary, are extremely slow to germinate, and will also show very low germination rates. The good news is that the ones with very low germination rates, like rosemary, are extremely robust once they’re established, and subsequently propagate like weeds. The herbs in particular are weed-like, to the extent that you’ll probably want to plant them in pots to prevent them from taking over your garden.