Growing Red Maple Trees From Seed


RsTgardenian

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Hi,

So I got some red maple seeds a while ago and I was just curious about how I should go about planting to them to get the highest chance of germination? I soaked some in water for a day as the instructions on the package they came in had noted and then I placed a couple batches of them in the fridge in moist paper toweled plastic bags to stratify them. Now the instructions noted to have them stratified for 30 days; I was wondering if it's best to do the full 30 days, or if less time could work? And does the method I used to stratify them seem like a good way to do it? Some articles online recommend stratifying them in some sort of peat moss-sand mix for a certain period of time but I don't have peat moss and just did it this way because it was the most convenient. Also out of curiosity (and impatient eagerness) I planted several of the maple seeds in pots after their soaking, and I was wondering how much of a chance there was for any of those to begin sprouting?

I did all of this just about a week ago. So far none of the ones I've planted have germinated. In one of the pots I surface sowed the seed with the fan facing up; it was a method I saw in a video on how to grow them. I'd also very much appreciate any other advice on how to grow these red maples if you have any.

Thank You
 
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alp

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I only had experience in growing acer from seeds and it took a full 100 days, alstroemeria a month and a half. Find a reputable source and follow the instruction please. If you have a cold season with snow, you could leave the seeds outside. You don't have to have exact peat moss. Just good quality low nutrient compost for seeds and leave them outside. When the optimal or minimal requirements are met, the seeds will germinate. Having said that, you have much less control over seeds left au naturel. Too hot, too cold, too many critters (for example, ants like helleborus and snowdrop seeds)..

Leaving the seeds to stratify is actually very easy. Just mark the dates and leave the seeds to do its business. If you have a lot of these maple seeds, why not leave some outside? It snows in West Michigan, I think!
 

RsTgardenian

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I only had experience in growing acer from seeds and it took a full 100 days, alstroemeria a month and a half. Find a reputable source and follow the instruction please. If you have a cold season with snow, you could leave the seeds outside. You don't have to have exact peat moss. Just good quality low nutrient compost for seeds and leave them outside. When the optimal or minimal requirements are met, the seeds will germinate. Having said that, you have much less control over seeds left au naturel. Too hot, too cold, too many critters (for example, ants like helleborus and snowdrop seeds)..

Leaving the seeds to stratify is actually very easy. Just mark the dates and leave the seeds to do its business. If you have a lot of these maple seeds, why not leave some outside? It snows in West Michigan, I think!
Hey Alp, The several I have in my fridge have been in there for some time, but just in those paper towels I mentioned earlier. Do you mean that I should move those ones outside to stratify in a compost mix? I don't have any actual compost at the moment, just high nutrient potting soil. To be honest I was always a little confused about what compost was; is it just homemade soil you make after letting organic matter like kitchen scraps break down after some time? I've been leaving out some banana peels and other kitchen waste in a plastic container on my deck and so far it looks like it's gotten mushy and liquidy. I've seen some videos of people putting scraps in large barrels and then covering it with dirt; would that work better? I don't even know if the organic stuff in that container is acceptable to be used anymore.

And yes Michigan gets quite a bit of snow, I was just hoping to get at least one of the seeds to germinate this summer. If I did just plant some around my yard, should I do that towards the end of this summer or does it not matter when they're planted? Or do you mean something different when you say leave them outside? The few I already planted in pots have been outside on my deck since I set them up.

Thanks!
 

alp

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Yes, leave some outside in a sheltered area with dappled shade and a bit of sunshine. Mixed with with shop buy compost, garden soil, woodland soil if you can get hold of them and mix them well. No nutrients needed. Keep the area moist and let nature stratify them for you. You could top it with a bit of grit. When the condition is right, the seeds will wake up. Seeds should be sown as when fresh and dried. Just make sure they are not under extreme heat, or wind. That's why people put them in a cold frame and let nature takes its course.
 

RsTgardenian

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Yes, leave some outside in a sheltered area with dappled shade and a bit of sunshine. Mixed with with shop buy compost, garden soil, woodland soil if you can get hold of them and mix them well. No nutrients needed. Keep the area moist and let nature stratify them for you. You could top it with a bit of grit. When the condition is right, the seeds will wake up. Seeds should be sown as when fresh and dried. Just make sure they are not under extreme heat, or wind. That's why people put them in a cold frame and let nature takes its course.
Ok, thanks Alp. For the area do you think a corner off my house would be a good spot for the planted seeds? It's off a side of my house that is near my neighbor's so it gets a decent bit of sunshine for one part of the day but then virtually none for the remainder of the day, with my house blocking off that side. Most of my yard is under the shade of large black walnut trees so I could place pots in more open area; I'm just not sure if wildlife might get to them before they can germinate.. I could buy some mesh covering to protect them but it I don't think I have anything like that right now.

And would some nutrients in the soil I put the seeds impede their stratification at all? I already have some part-compost soil in pots around my house that have been out all winter.

Thanks a bunch once again!
 

alp

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I don't think stratification au naturel will not involve some form of nutrients. But then I am no expert.
 
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RsTgardenian

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Ok, thanks. I mixed in some native garden soil and sandy soil in addition to the composted nutrient soil; hopefully that works.
 
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