Papaya Germination
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Connie Monson
Posted on: June 16, 1999

Help! Could you please send some information about growing papaya from seed? So far this year I have had a zero percent germination rate for the papaya seed I ordered from you, although my other seedlings are doing well. I have tried soaking the seed overnight in a kelp solution before planting, not soaking it, several different moisture levels and soil types, bottom heat, no bottom heat, and ambient temperatures ranging from 70 to about 82 degrees Fahrenheit, yet none of the seeds has sprouted. Is there some esoteric secret I’ve failed to realize?

According to Dr Norman C Deno’s "Seed Germination Theory and Practice" papaya seeds need light to germinate, preceeded by 7 days of washing and cleaning of the seeds. To get close to 90 to 100% germination you have to treat the seeds with gibberellic acid. We just soaked the seeds after we received them for 24 hours, then surface sowed them, pressed them into the soil surface and 13 days later had 40% germination. If we had then treated the unsprouted seeds with gibberellic acid-3 we would undoubtedly have doubled the number of seeds that sprouted.

We will send you a replacement package free of charge and hope you will have better luck with it.

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