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Name: john
Status: other
Age: 40s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 1999-2001 

Plants from seed... someone told me that some seeds must pass through an animal or bird before they can be germinated. Is this true? If so, Can this process be imitated?

I'm mainly interested in evergreens.

Seeds of some plant species need to undergo various kinds of treatments (such as stratification and scarring) before germination. Yes, there are various methods to imitate natural processes. Here's one page that might help and try searching for more info on your particular plant seeds and contact your local agricultural extension office for more info.


Anthony R. Brach, Ph.D.

This theory is easily disproved. You can collect seeds from any garden plant or roadside weed and conduct your own experiment. You will likely find that even those seeds collected right from the plant and then planted in soil will germinate without having to pass through an animal (or bird).

Note that it is likely not every seed will germinate, but this is due to the fact that of a given collection of seeds, there is a proportion which are in fact dead and will never germinate.

In the case of evergreens, you can consult a good dendrology text for the particular species you wish to cultivate. You can improve germination results for certain tree species seeds by environmental treatment...the specifics, if any, for the species you are interested in will be described in the text. These involve primarily heat or cold and/or moisture treatments.

If you have specific germination questions involving particular species, please submit a question listing the specifics.

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Ric Rupnik

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