Thursday, August 30, 2007

Purple Coneflower Seeds

Purple Coneflower Seeds, Purple Coneflower Seed Identification, Seed IdentificationOn my main gardening blog I wrote a post title When I Collect Coneflower Seeds to help illustrate what a ripe Purple Coneflower seed head looks like. If you don't know what they look like when they're ready to collect see that post entry. Once your Purple Coneflower heads are nice and black and you are ready to remove the seeds from this popular perennial plant finding the seeds can be a little confusing.

My very first trade involved trading some of my White Swan Coneflower seeds with a garden on GardenWeb. Unfortunately I was new to seed trades and seed identification so I sent her the chaff and tossed the seeds. She was very understanding and even gave me a chance to make it up to her when more of the seed heads ripened.

If you look at the picture above of the Purple Coneflower seeds you'll notice I separated the seeds from the chaff to help identify the seeds. The pile on the right hand side is the seed and the pile on the left hand side is the chaff.

18 comments:

Gina said...

MBT - thank you so much for posting this! It is extremely helpful. Unfortunately I only have the chaff. I'm guessing the seeds already fell or something? Anyway, I really appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for presenting this information in an easy to understand pictorial format. This insures a beautiful garden next year.

MrBrownThumb said...

Hi Anonymous,

Glad you found the info helpful. Good luck with your garden next year.

Nan2Four said...

Thank you so much for the picture of the actual seeds of the coneflower. Each year I try in vain to get additional seeds but the goldfinches always beat me to the seeds. I think this year I actually will get some! Nan2Four

MrBrownThumb said...

Hi nan,

Glad you found the info useful

Anonymous said...

Hye, just wanted you to know that after a couple of hours of cleaning purple conflower seed, I had a panic attack - -whoa - IS this the seed??? Your picture confimred that I was in fact right - the hard, bullet shaped white ones among the brown papery stuff!!!! Thank you so much

MrBrownThumb said...

anonymous, Glad you found the info useful. I remember the trouble I had when I collected these seeds for the first time.

Ron said...

Thanks for showing the pic of the PurpleConeflower seeds. I'm glad that I got the seeds correctly rather than the chaff.

When should I sow them? Can I winter sow them on a transparent covered flat then let it sit outside? Then just transplant them come spring?

Ron

MrBrownThumb said...

Ron,

Sorry for the late reply and you probably already know this but yes you can winter sow these.

stitchingforhim said...

thank you for the pics. very helpful. I believe I also fed the gold finches & purple finches. I was able to provure a few seeds left over from the wild life. Do I just sow them into the garden & will they flower this year. . summer/fall?

MrBrownThumb said...

Stiching, they won't flower the first year when grown from seed. I guess if you're lucky they might but generally the need 2-3 years to bloom.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Hello.

Is there a way to seperate the seeds from the shaft? I have a whole bucket full of both.

Thanks,
Kay

MrBrownThumb said...

Kay,

The way I do it is to place them in a large dish or deep bowl and flip the seeds outdoors. Kind of like when you're moving a pan to keep food from sticking or when making stir fry.

Or you can blow on them like you're blowing out candles and usually just the chaff will blow off.

Anonymous said...

Are all of the blackened flower heads seed-producing? Are some male rather than female? Will some be too immature to have seeds in them? Just wondering. . .

MrBrownThumb said...

The color of the seed heads doesn't really matter. Yes, some may produce seeds that aren't mature, but that seems pretty rare from my experience.

mélanie said...

Hi,
I'm trying to collect seed from my hot papaya echinacee, is it the same way? do I have to wait until the flower is black before collecting?
thanks for your help
mélanie

MrBrownThumb said...

Hi Melanie,

Yes, you collect them the same way. Waiting for the cone head to turn black is a pretty good way to make sure the seeds are ripe. Also, I should note that if your coneflower is a hybrid chances are that the seeds will not grow a plant that looks like the parents.

JonP said...

Thank you for the text and photos. After going through numerous links, thinking the birds got the seeds, and tossing the heads in the trash, I retreived the heads and isolated the seeds.

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