Intro: Collecting Hosta Seeds
You won't find hosta seeds for sale in any nursery or seed catalogs. The reason is that hostas do not come true from seed. That means that the hosta will more than likely not look like it's parent. More than likely you will get some kind of plain green hosta.
- A green hosta will more than likely produce a green hosta. There is a 1 in 100 chance that a green hosta seed will produce a gold, variegated, or depending on what it was was pollenated with a blue hosta.
- Blue hosta seeds may result in blue, green, or gold hostas.
- Seeds from a streaked hosta may give you streaked hosta babies.
- hosta 'Ventricosa' is one of the only hosta that comes true from seed.
- Many people will find one or more hostas that they like the characteristics of and try to force pollination of hosta seeds. The hosta with the most characteristics is the flower you would want to pollinate with pollen from the flowers of other hostas. This is best done in the early morning before bees and such can get to them.
This instructable will show you how to collect and store seeds from hostas.
Step 1: Prepare Paper Envelopes
I label paper envelopes with the names of the hostas I am collecting seeds from. If you don't know the names, not a big deal. Make sure the envelopes are paper, don't use plastic. If you use plastic and the seeds are not completely dry then they will rot. You can use coin envelopes, envelopes, your own homemade envelopes, etc.
Step 2: Find Seeds That Are Ready
Hosta seeds are ready 30 days after pollination. Since most of you aren't keeping a calendar the easiest way to tell is if the top seed pods on a hosta are dry and start to crack open. You can crack open the other seed pods to collect the seeds. The seeds will be black, dry, and papery when ready.
Step 3: Collect the Seeds
Collect the seeds from the plants. You can either collect the seed pods themselves into envelopes or if they are open carefully shake the seeds into a paper envelope.
Step 4: Storing the Seeds
The seeds can be used right away or they can be stored until ready to use. Keep them in a cool, dry place until ready to plant. Places you could store them include:
- Unheated garage or shed
- Unheated basement