Good afternoon. I have a single plant of Starry false Solomon’s seal. It flowers every year but this year it produced berries which are now bright red. I opened one and there are two beige seeds inside. Are they likely to be fertile? If I plant them, should I remove the flesh of the berries first? Thanks
Your wish to propagate the single Starry false Solomon’s seal botanical name Maianthemum stellatum will offer you two choices.
Yes, you may plant the seeds, but patience and time are required. There are many websites offering you detailed instruction for stratification. The following excerpts from the Native Plant Network will help you.
Seed Processing: Collect mature fruits when they turn red. Seeds are light tan at maturity. Seeds are cleaned by maceration using a seed cleaner. Seeds must be kept moist after cleaning and immediately placed into cold, moist stratification
Seed Treatments: 5 month cold, moist outdoor stratification. Seeds require a minimum of 100 day cold, moist stratification. Germination is reported to be markedly higher in stratified seeds exposed to low temperatures during germination and after seeds have been subjected to cold, moist stratification for 1 year.
Toronto Master Gardeners own Growing Guides are currently unavailable to you, as they are undergoing extensive revisions. The site should be re-opening soon.
More easily achievable would be division of rhizomes at the root level, but if you have a single plant that has not spread, you may not want to disturb this beautiful specimen.
September 18, 2021