Ma Huang Germination Problems
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Al Bottner
Posted on: April 02, 2004

I bought some Ma Huang seeds from Richters. After two attempts I have been unable to get any to germinate.

My first attempt was straight planting in peat pots under grow lights. Nothing happened.

My current attempt was to soak the seeds for 5 days in Liquid Kelp, which promotes germination (This method worked very well for my Arnica seeds). The soaked seeds are now in a Gardeners Supply APS unit under grow lights on a timer. It has been about 2 weeks and nothing so far. Can you offer any suggestions?

I suspect that the seeds got damaged in transit to you. They are larger than many other seeds and hence are more vulnerable to crushing. We tested the seeds late in 2003 and they had 40% germination in 6 days. We simply sowed them in sterilized seeding compost and kept them at room temperature during the night and warmer during sunny days. According to Dr. Deno’s seed germination trials, most of the Ephedra species he tested germinated at 70 degrees Fahrenheit and some, but not all, would not do so at cool temperatures.

Would you please get in contact with Richters Customer Service (1-800-668-HERB, 905-640-6677, and ask them to send you a replacement packet?


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