Propagating Native Plants: Turk’s Cap

Updated.

They really do taste like cucumbers!

Malvaviscus drummondii
Malvaviscus drummondii fruit

When to sow: Spring or autumn. If planting in the fall give the plants at least 5 weeks of growth time before the first expected frost.

Special treatment: Dry the fruit at room temperature. After a few days the seeds will be easy to extract from the pulp.

Fresh or dried seed: Either. Store collected seeds in the refrigerator.

Planting depth: 1/4-1/2 inch deep.

Preferred temperature for germination: Approximately 60-70° Fahrenheit

Days to germination: Anywhere from 1-6 weeks.

Vegetative propagation: Root division in the spring; softwood cuttings (4-6 inches long. May require a rooting hormone).

Turk's Cap
Turk’s Cap

UPDATE:

Fresh Turk’s cap seeds germinated in moist potting soil within 30 days. The air temperature during the day ranged from the upper 80’s to the mid 90’s. Evening temperatures from 65-75 degrees. Cuttings were quick to root. I could see roots already pushing out of the pot within 3 weeks time.

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5 thoughts on “Propagating Native Plants: Turk’s Cap

  1. Debra – I’ve actually had difficulty with seeds from the pink Turk’s Cap, but I’ve found the red ones amongst the easiest for cuttings. Every single one has rooted within 3 weeks.

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  2. I was kind of freaked out this summer when I found out that a lot of nursery grown plants are toxic to pollinators. Some of our local people are more ethical I am sure but it kind of got me thinking about the source of my plants. Plus I am feeling too cheap to continue buying potted plants hahaha

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  3. I’ve been lazy about these, buying more rather than trying to gather and germinate seed or divide out clumps either one. I think it is that protracted germination rate that kills the deal for me with seed. I’m not sure why I haven’t tried to divide established clumps except that they are so pretty this time of year and I am reluctant to mess with that! If a small plant is happy with its space it typically turns into a clump of plants after a few seasons go by and so far I’ve let local nurseries be just that – nurseries for Turk’s cap babies.

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