Ephedra, Rauwolfia
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: P. Sipos
Posted on: February 16, 1999

I seem to be having trouble growing some green ephedra seeds that I purchased from you about 6 weeks ago. I have tried bottom heating mats (20 degrees above ambient), regular soil and rockwool all to no avail. I have also had this problem with the rauwolfia seeds as well. Could you please tell me what I am doing wrong?

Ephedra seeds need a pH of 6.8. Peat based soil should be okay, but rockwool will be too alkaline until it has been well flushed.

Also ephedra germinates best at 70 degrees Fahrenheit and you may have kept the medium too warm. The seeds should come up in 9 to 13 days.

Rauwolfia seeds take at least 75 days to germinate and the 6 weeks represent about the halfway point. The germination rate should be about 20% for this seed.

Also I have a very small backyard gardening business and I was wondering if you might know of a good mail order company for greenhouse growing supplies. I cannot seem to find the thin 3 inch plastic pots for transplanting.

There are horticultural supply companies in every region of the country. You should check yellow pages in Edmonton or Calgary.

Can you tell me how you ship your plug trays to Alberta? If I understand the order sheets correctly I need to add about $15 to $20 per tray and I’d like to know if there is a cheaper method of shipping.

Plug trays are fragile and cannot be shipped by cheaper methods. Large orders bring the cost down considerably, but for order of 2-20 trays, the cost of shipping is, unfortunately, quite high.

With best wishes,

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