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|First, scarify the seeds. Then, soak the seeds in water for at least 4 days. Change the water every 12 hours. Plant no more than 3/4 inch deep in loose, moist, and well-drained soil. Sterilized soil mix especially formulated for germinating seeds is best. Pat the soil down firmly so that seed would be about 3/4 to 1/2 inch below the surface.
Keep the soil above 75øF to allow germination to occur, do not rely on the temperature of the air. The use of a 40 or 60 watt light bulb under the germinating flats is one method of keeping the soil warm. The use of clear plastic over the germinating containers will help keep moisture from evaporating. It is important to have patience, Heliconias may take several months to germinate.
|Scarification / Stratification
|Seed coats may be so hard that they are impermeable to water. They need to be scratched or broken using a knife or sandpaper, in order to germinate. Chip the seeds with a sharp knife or make a few swipes with a sharp edged file or use sandpaper to allow moisture being more readily absorbed.
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