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Moist packing – what’s that?

As I was packing seeds today, I thought that maybe some people who never bought or they buy for the first time moist packed seeds may wonder what they would get.

Sometimes I get questions as well, so although I have shown pictures in previous posts, it is good to tell again. There is no secret; seeds that are known to be hydrophilic (to make a long story short – these are seeds which need to be sown right away after collecting or if not, kept moist to preserve their viability), are cleaned from the fruits and stored in slightly moist vermiculite in Ziploc bags. And no, there is no need to spray the seeds with anything chemical.

For shipping, the portion of seeds is placed in smaller bags with a bit of the moist vermiculite (*exception for US orders, when the seeds are are packed with a piece of moist paper towel). These seeds are to be sown right away after receiving.

Asarum canadense moist packed seeds for shipping

These small bags are not intended for storing the seeds long term! (I know someone tried to do that, that’s why I mention it). If you really want to keep the seeds longer, and /or provide stratification in the fridge instead of sowing, you need to transfer them in larger bags with added moist vermiculite (slightly moist peat works as well).

Very small seeds, like those of Coptis shown in the picture, are easily sown by spreading the content of the bag on top of the potting mix (no need to pick the seeds from the vermiculite). Even larger seeds are better sown this way.

Coptis trifolia moist packed seeds

In case of hydrophilic seeds, if kept dry they will either not germinate at all, or will germinate poorly/over a longer period of time. Keeping them moist and allowed the required cycles that mimic the natural conditions will result most times, in 100% germination in the spring. It is a lot of extra work but worth doing it.

Thank you! – Merci! to all our customers