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How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

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How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by AutumnDamask on 20th November 2011, 19:08

Just picked a hip off 'Old Blush' and am wondering if I picked too early.
I know "every rose is different" but are there any markers one should look for??

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AutumnDamask

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Re: How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by Admin on 20th November 2011, 19:18

That one is ready Thumbsup

In general if they go orange like that they are ready. Some never do chamcge colour so colour is not necessarily a good indicator of maturity. If you know when they were pollinated then a rough guide to begin with is 120 days old. A lot will mature before this and some, like some Teas, take longer. Another way to tell whether they are ready is to give them a bit of a squeeze. If they are hard (like these ones look to be) then they are generally ready. If they have a yellow/green tinge and are soft to touch then chances are they won't be ready. Some, like multiflora hips, can be ready in as little as 60 days but I always leave them longer just to be sure. 120 is the average for most roses and it has worked for me in the past.

Word of caution.. if you are planning on putting them in the fridge now, for about 6-8 weeks, you may find they don't germinate until the weather cools down a bit as rose seeds tend to re-enter dormancy once the temperature reaches about 25C. If they start coming up in Autumn then you may need to protect them during the winter if it gets really cold where you are Smile

Good luck with them. Are you planning to do any planned crosses yet? If you'd like a hand just post in the hybridising forum and we'll try and help out.

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Re: How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by AutumnDamask on 20th November 2011, 19:34

Cool! There is another hip on the bush that looks to be at the same stage. I'll harvest that too. Willy

If I don't put them in the fridge now then how would I store them safely until winter? Just put them in some damp soil like they would be out there in the "wild"?
We don't get much below -2C in winter. Can get to -5C on the odd occasion (night-time temps). This winter was pretty mild.

Looks like I will have to carry a notebook to write down when petals fall ....!

I'll make a list of questions to ask over in the other forum... LOL
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AutumnDamask

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Re: How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by Admin on 20th November 2011, 19:54

You can put them in now and if you can keep the pot you sow them in a cool place they will be happy Thumbsup In fact, sometimes they will even germinate in the fridge.

If you want to store them until winter you have a number of options. Drying has been shown to reduce the germination rates of rugosa and rubiginosa seeds but have little-to-no effect on others. You can store them dry until the beginning of winter or you could place them in damp peat and store them in warm dark place until then. You can sow them into a pot of soil outside where they will get rained on but remain dormant if temps get too high and they will stratify normally over winter. You might also get germinations in Autumn as some roses don't even need cold stratitication. Sometimes warm stratification is all that is needed. I did not stratify my Rosa clinophylla seeds at all and got about 90% germination of the seed. 'Old Blush' is an old China so it may be less affected by the heat and will germinate anyway.

If it was me, I'd put them in the fridge now in a ziplock bag of moist peat and see how they go and after 6-8 weeks of cold stratification in the fruit crisper in the fridge and sow them after that keeping them somewhere cool. They only need the cooler temps until they start germinating and then will grow strongly in the warmth in a spot where they get morning sun and afternoon shade.

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Re: How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by AutumnDamask on 20th November 2011, 21:09

I don't have any peat moss at the moment so I may just use paper towel. Or I could wait a day or two until I've had a chance to go into town and buy some. *g*

Thank you!
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Re: How do you know when hips / seeds are ready??

Post by Admin on 20th November 2011, 22:13

paper towel works just fine Thumbsup

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