Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:09 am
Location: Texas

Yeah...I bought one of those mini bonsai kits...

Honestly, I have done my research and I know not to expect a whole lot from this $6 box, but it's for fun! I also understand that it takes many years to create the actual bonsai tree.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the kit, it contains an information/ instruction booklet, a tiny little pot, dehydrogenated soil, a really (really) crappy pair of scissors, 5 Jack Pine seeds and a little piece of paper claiming to replace the seeds if none sprout.

The instruction booklet says to soak the seeds for 24 hours. Wrap them in a damp paper towel put that into a plastic bag, seal and refrigerate for 7 days. (Then plant and etc. etc...)

Anyways, I wanted to do some research and found that Jack Pine seeds should stay in the fridge for closer to 3 months before planting and another person said to keep them in the fridge until you see a root sprout.... so I found this rather confusing.

I know not to plant until Spring but if I really should be keeping my seeds in the fridge for 3 months before planting, I need to get this cleared up soon! So I was wondering what you guys thought I should do.

Thank you for your time!

P.S. I know some of you will suggest buying a small tree and creating a Bonsai of it myself. Well, after all my research since I bought this kit, I have really became interested in this fascinating art. So I do plan on buying an indoor tree.

BUT! That does not mean I am giving up on this mini bonsai kit!

User avatar
Senior Member
Posts: 269
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 4:54 pm
Location: Toronto, ON, zone 5a

you've probably done more research on this than anyone else in here, so you should already have the information ;) from what I can see, the web mentions anywhere between no stratification to months of it.
I am thinking anywhere between those 7 days and a couple of months would work fine... just make sure they don't freeze after you've soaked them. but I've never grown pines from seeds, so I could be wrong here...

maybe try the seed starting forum? - this really is about starting the seeds after all, you won't have to worry about bonsaiing it for a while yet ;)

good luck

User avatar
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 5122
Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 12:17 am
Location: Western PA USDA Zone 6A


I checked my reference material (Dirr & Heuser) for you and found that Jack Pine requires little to no stratification. This book is considered to be equivalent to a propagators bible so I feel you can be pretty sure of their statements.
"Fresh or stored seed require no pretreatment or at most one week of cold stratification."
They also suggest an approx 70% germination rate so don't expect them all to germinate. I would definitely suggest that you time this to coincide with the weather in your area and that you do this outside exclusively.


Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:09 am
Location: Texas

I didn't see that there was a seed forum! I'll move there. Thanks! :)

Return to “BONSAI FORUM”