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RamonaGS
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Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

So maybe there is a thread on here that covers this that I have not seen, but I am having a heck of a time trying to sprout my scallion seeds. I planted about 7 to start with in mini peat pots, kept them moist, and nothing...not one sprouted. There was a day or two when I was out of town and my partner didn't water them, but that was about after 2 weeks of my care when that happened. So I waited about 2-3 more weeks, and then tried to plant more seeds directly into the ground, I watered pretty good everyday, and after another month and a half...again...nothing. Is there a trick of some sort I am missing? Should I treat them differently from the other seeds I have sprouted? I am totally open to advice! :(
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

Hm. My first thought was that onion seeds lose viability fairly quickly, or so I've heard.

Last year, I decided to "use up" my old seed packets and a good number of them germinated -- If I were to guess, the 4 yr old seeds hardly sprouted, but two yr old seeds were still mostly good. I soaked them in initially warm water, left in room temp (mid-upper 70's) overnight before sowing them. Onions like cooler conditions so I don't use heat mats when starting them inside, and outside, sowed them in afternoon shade bed (I have more trouble with weeds and slugs when directly sown).
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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RamonaGS
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Re: Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

So if they are not sprouting, they might be old?
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

imafan26
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Re: Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

I think too much water.

Onion seeds are slow can take 10-28 days to sprout.

Soak seed overnight in warm water to soften up the seeds.

I don't have any luck sprouting seeds in tiny pots, so I get a 4 or 6 inch pot or shallow recycled container. I prefer tofu containers, and fill it with peatlite (I over water most of the time so this mix dries fast) 50% peat 50% perlite. I mix in some osmocote in the peatlite but this is optional. If there is no fertilizer in the mix, you will need to start liquid feeds after the plants have germinated and are about 2 weeks old. I have too many plants so, I use the osmocote and take the easy way out.

Make sure the media is thoroughly moistened before adding the seeds. I use a toothpick because wet seeds don't always cooperate to separate and spread them in the pot. DO NOT COVER seeds, they sprout best with exposure to light. Bottom water, do not leave saucer filled with water under the pots or the seeds will rot. Keep evenly moist but not soggy.

The alternate method I use is after I plant the seeds, I will cover the pot with a paper towel and dampen it using a spray bottle filled with water. Mist the paper towel to keep it moist but not soggy. After 10 or so days start looking under the paper towel for sprouts. Gently remove towel when sprouts emerge. Bottom water but do not over water.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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RamonaGS
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Re: Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

I have gotten everything else to sprout from the mini peat pots, and starter cakes, but those scallions are just NOT cooperating! I wait past 28 days before I give up, but I am going to try some of the techniques you suggested. I will try the paper towel thing and soaking the seeds for sure! Thanks for the response ladies :()
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

evtubbergh
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Re: Rotten STUPID Scallions! What am I doing wrong?!

I also have problems with onion and garlic chive seeds. I soaked them over night and not one germinated of about 20! I have a tray of new garlic chive seeds out and I'll let you know. They do like cool weather but not cold weather - above 10°C, which I think is 50F. And I think they need even warmer weather for germination. They are cool-weather crops but they germinate before winter.

I did not know about leaving them open to the light but I do know that the plants like full sun (like all day) but this should not be hot. The instructions I have say 1cm below the surface.

This is a good article to read: https://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/8008.pdf

Not to hijack the thread but do you or anyone plant other crops with the onions? I was thinking of sprinkling mixed lettuce seeds with the baby onions and mustard with the larger ones (if they sprout). Then I pick the babies for salad as they grow too thick. I am planning on planting the garlic chives along the edge at the end of winter (as far as I can tell they die down in winter).

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