Seed germination test

I am trying to test the germination rate of several kinds of seeds which I harvested within the last 60 days. Seeds were taken from various plants when thoroughly dry. Each sample of ten seeds was rolled up in paper towel stock and lightly wet with tap water. Each rolled up packet was then placed in a clear plastic sealed bag and placed on a heating pad. The pad temperature is about 90f. The seeds are Marigold, Black Eye Susan, Coreopsis, Heliopsis and Shasta daisy.
After ten days none of the seeds have germinated.
Any ideas about what I am doing wrong?
Thanks, EJ in NJ
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wrote:

90f may be a bit too warm, at least according to this: http://tomclothier.hort.net/page11.html
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Good situation outline.
EJ of course there can be many factors in play here and w/o looking up specific plants, here is some general info to consider:
Heat seems a bit high, think about mimicking the seasonal temps in which these plants naturally germinate.
As a general rule I keep my germination area at ~72-78F.
Light, some seeds need it, some don't. Marigold seeds don't, but the B/E Susans do. Once again, think about the seasonal conditions where the plant does best. I am of the opinion that seeds can detect not only the intensity of the light but the color temperature of spring vs. fall conditions just as the adult plant can, so they won't germinate now in natural light.
Other factors; the pH of the water may be off, perhaps a period of dormancy is needed, some seeds need scarification, some need vernalization, some have internal growth inhibitors, or controllers if you will, that must be triggered or they may need a growth hormone. Perhaps they may just need more time.
It is a process of trial and error and yet you still run the risk that the seeds were just bad.
Good luck.
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gunner wrote:

Thanks to both of you...I'll try doing it again at room temp (maybe 72 to 75f). If this does not work then I'll try stratification. EJ in NJ
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Room temp. always works for me with seeds that need to be germinated. Good Luck!
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