Can I get some help on starting Rainier cherry trees from the seeds? I just ate some and they are so good. I have saved the seeds. Do I need to dry them or soak them before planting in pots or what? Thanks so much for your help.
Hardiness Zone: 7a
By Mikeinva from Roanoke, VA
I don't know about cherry pits, but I have some cherry pits also and I am going to do what I did with lemon, grapefruit and orange seeds. I set them in a washcloth (nice thick one) folded over the seeds and saturate the washcloth with water daily, or more often if the house is dry. Keep constantly moist and they should sprout in a couple of weeks. Then plant them in potting soil and keep evenly moist. I have numberous lemon, grapefruit and orange trees. If this doesn't work at least I know I tried. If you come up with a better way please let me know. Good luck!
I have started many cherry trees from the pits left from canning. I don't know if Rainier cherries will grow true to their parent plant or not, but if you have the space, why not give it a shot? If it doesn't work, you can always have a horticulture student graft some Rainier cherry branches onto your tree. Best of luck!
P.S. All I did was throw them in the garden. At least one out of ten came up with no more encouragement than that.
I also don't know if a true rainier cherry will come from its pit. I DO know that cherries are like peaches and called "stone fruit" because the pit is hard like a stone. Putting a pit in a moisten wet cloth will do nothing but create a moldy wash cloth or bunch of paper towels. The tree will start only after the "stone" has cracked.....usually after sitting out all winter with the freezing of winter doing the cracking.
I have used this technique successfully, with several different types of hard seeds... Take a nail file & very carefully sand off a area at the bottom of the seed- but be careful not to damage the seed inside. This will allow water to penetrate the seed, causing it to crack open slightly as the sprouting begins.
I have used this same method for Zinnias & other flowering plants- however, keep in mind that this method is NOT practical for tiny seeds. As long as the seed is large enough to hold onto & safely abrade the hard outer shell, they will begin sprouting in a matter of days!
By far, the most difficult seed I have successfully sprouted is the lotus... The process consists of specific/different steps that MUST be followed precisely, in order to get the seed to start growing- in all, it takes an ENTIRE MONTH! I challenged a couple of friends to see who could get their lotus seed to start growing... I was the only one who could do it. But my reward was not for the bragging rights of the challenge. It appeared as a gorgeous cream, pink, glowing gold bloom with a neon green center, that would have completely covered a dinner plate. Definitely a breathtaking sight!
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