Strange Wonderful Things

Rare and exotic plants & seeds

Turquoise Puya


Liparia splendens

Liparia splendens - The Mountain Dahlia

"Mountain Dahlia"


Germinating the seeds


When to plant -- Plant your seeds when you receive them for best results.

Getting started -- Scratch each seed a few times over sandpaper or a nail file, to allow water to enter easier.  Then soak the seeds in a cup of water for 12-18 hours.

Soil -- Germinate them in a well-draining, slightly-acidic soil.  A typical mix is equal parts of potting soil and perlite or coarse horticultural sand.  Do not add lime to the mix.

 Use containers about 3 inches (7 cm) tall, with drainage holes.  Fill them with the soil mix without compressing it, and place a seed down.  On top of the seed, sprinkle a small amount of the seed inoculant powder which i have included in a small packet.  Only a small amount of powder is necessary, because the bacteria in it will multiply.  But use up the entire packet for your seeds.  Cover the seed with 1/2 inch (1 cm) of soil. 

 Add non-chlorinated water until the soil is evenly moist (but not soggy).  If your tap water has chlorine added to it, it's best to use bottled water or rain water, because the chlorine may kill the inoculant bacteria.  Many water filters do not remove chlorine adequately.

 Keep the pots between 60-75 degrees F (15-24 Celsius).  Avoid letting them get above 77 degrees F (25 C).  I recommend placing a minimum/maximum thermometer near the pots, especially if using a heating mat.

 Give the pots good air ventilation, to help prevent fungal infections.  I do not recommend placing them in a propagation dome.  Keep them in a bright spot out of direct sun.

 They should start sprouting within 3 to 6 weeks, however allow up to 16 weeks for any slow ones. 

Light -- Once they sprout, give them bright light, such as morning sun, filtered sun, or fluorescent lighting.  Avoid strong sun the first month.

Watering -- Give just enough water to keep the soil evenly moist.  Avoid keeping it soggy, and also avoid keeping the leaves wet, as this can invite rot.  Again, non-chlorinated water is best. 

Climate -- Moderate temperatures are ideal, especially for young seedlings.  For the first 6-9 months, try to keep them between about 50 and 75F (10-24C).  Keep older plants above about 26F (-3C), and preferably above freezing.

Repotting -- Once they are about 2-3 months old, gently transfer them to bigger pots (about 2-4 quarts / 2-4 liters).  It's best to use a ceramic pot of a light color, to help keep the roots cooler in sunlight. 

 A typical soil mix for repotting is equal parts of coarse horticultural sand, pumice rock, and compost.  Or use equal parts of potting soil and perlite.  I recommend mixing in a legume inoculant containing Rhizobium bacteria.  This is commonly sold from seed shops that sell peas and beans. 

 Avoid letting the soil ball break apart when repotting, which can disturb the roots.  Reduce sun exposure for 1-2 weeks after repotting.

Fertilizing --  Liparia has low fertilizer needs and should not be given strong doses of fertilizer.  Feed about every 3-4 months during periods of active growth with an all-purpose fertilizer that contains micronutrients.  Avoid "bloom" fertilizers, or other high-phosphorous fertilizers.

Sunlight -- Older plants prefer mostly sunny conditions, with some protection from hot afternoon sun.  Acclimate younger plants slowly to increased sun levels.

If any questions come up, feel free to email me.

Have fun growing them!

- Jeff

Strange Wonderful Things



Strange Wonderful Things

Rare and exotic plants & seeds

Turquoise Puya

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