Plants that reseed

In the zone 5 when a plant goes to seed in late summer or fall I need to kn ow how best to get more plants to germinate from the seed.
Take coneflower for instance.
I would think it's best to gather the seeds (before the birds), store them over the winter and then spread the seed in the early Spring?
I've always been confused a bit about the process -- certainly seeds that f all to the ground in fall become useless because of the snow?, so it's real ly a matter of what seeds remain intact and dry enough to germinate in the Spring, if left on the plant? I guess what I'm trying to ask is that Spring planting beats Fall planting any day for areas that have cold winters? or not?
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[snip]

Can't say about coneflower. I'm in zone 6 (western Ohio), and zinnia seeds dropped on the ground do not become useless, though birds probably lower their numbers as the winter goes on. After 2 years of terrible results with inside starting, combined with robust volunteers, I gave up on starting the zinnias in pots. I gathered seed heads, dried and separated (as beat as I cound). Then scattered the seeds around last frost. I think I had about a quart of seed & chaff.
But I still have a dozen or so zinnias in a section that I did not seed.
I also have some cosmos volunteers this year.
I gave up on trying to start alyssum years ago. I leave the dried plant as shelter (and a marker) and wait in the spring, then thin and transplant. I take a similar approach to dahlburg daisy.

My take, with slightly milder winters, is that fall/spring doesn't matter if you are planting the seeds. If they are on the surface, then fall scattering gives critters (or Paleo hunter/gatherers) longer to gather and eat them.
While weeding the garden a couple days ago, I found that last year's tomato patch has tomatoes coming up. Better late than never, I suppose. (Still pulled them out.)
--
Drew Lawson What would Brian Boitano do?

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On Tuesday, July 22, 2014 9:17:38 AM UTC-4, Drew Lawson wrote:

Ok Dave -- thanks. I have a ton of Cosmos come up every year and I don't to uch them. I do however leave the plants alone till Spring when I mow them d own and like I say they reseed like crazy. I'll try half and half with the coneflower, bring some seeds in and just scatter some seeds off the heads s oon.
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Were that true I'd never have any weeds. I live in the northern Catskills (lots of snow) and my wildflower meadow reseeds itself.
http://i62.tinypic.com/ivirn6.jpg
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mkr5000 said:

Depends. Some seeds won't germinate without experiencing winter conditions. So you would have to recreate those conditions with any seed you gather (a process called stratification).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stratification_(botany)

Echinacea doesn't need stratification, seeds need darkness and germination temperature range is 70-75 F.
Rudbeckia needs some statification, then light and temprature of 70-75 F. So you would surface sow these onto moist potting soil and refridgerate for two weeks (or put the seeds into a bag with a source of moisture for the same amoung to time, then surface sow).
Best reference I know of for raising flowers from seed:
/From Seed to Bloom/ by Eileen Powell.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
--
Pat in Plymouth MI

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On Tuesday, July 22, 2014 11:19:33 AM UTC-4, Pat Kiewicz wrote:

Thanks Pat -- now I get it.
Want to plant some coneflower, black eyed susan, cleome and some queen annes lace (native) for starters.
For seeds that don't need stratification (like coneflower) where is best place to store the seeds I gather? I've read both in a ziploc bag in refrig or a cool dark place in basement.
Basement idea sounds better to me. ?
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wrote:

Basements can be dank and contain seed eating insects and rodents, fridge is safer. However all those seeds can be planted late fall... deer and rabbits wont eat susans and lace but they will eat cones.
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wrote:

know how best to get more plants to germinate from the seed.

them over the winter and then spread the seed in the early Spring?

that fall to the ground in fall become useless because of the snow?, so it's really a matter of what seeds remain intact and dry enough to germinate in the Spring, if left on the plant? I guess what I'm trying to ask is that Spring planting beats Fall planting any day for areas that have cold winters? or not?
I'll bet the real answer is "maybe and sometimes" together. It will always depend a lot on the species and cultivar involved.
?-)
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