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Thread: How old is too old?

  1. #1
    Lechenaultia's Avatar
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    How old is too old?

    Konnichiwa!

    First of all, I am not a Nepenthes enthusiast, but I like Nepenthes. I am quite unfamiliar with Nepenthes. In fact, I have been hardly growing Nepenthes in greenhouse. I remember the disappointed look (facial expression) of the great German Nepenthes & Heliamphora specialist, who is a worldwide distributer, when he saw a dying tiny Nepenthes (only one I had in my greenhouse at that time) in my Byblis greenhouse (see the far bottom in the page 1 of the thread: http://icps.proboards.com/thread/234...-byblis?page=1) after the ICPS international conference in 2002.
    Back to the subject,
    My German friend (not the above-mentioned specialist, but he is also a specialist) kindly sent Nepenthes eymae seeds to me in 2013. I sowed the seeds in vitro, they germinated very well. Recently when I was tidying up the refrigerator, I found the remaining of the seeds without silica gel. Just curiosity, I sowed the seeds on February 9 in 2018. The seed was 5 years old. I noticed its germination a few days ago. I took the photos on March 2 in 2018.
    I have often heard the viability of Nepenthes seed is quite short. It might be the fact when it came to the Lowlanders?
    What is your experience?

    Kind regards from the Far East
    How old is too old?-20180302_224905-jpg
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4752/3...692a943b_o.jpg
    the germination from 5 years old Nepenthes eymae seeds

    How old is too old?-20180302_225436-jpg
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4752/2...c8bf7296_o.jpg
    the germination from 5 years old Nepenthes eymae seeds

    How old is too old?-26703044788_46c8bf7296_o-jpg
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4719/3...4e9d4426_o.jpg
    the germination from 5 years old Nepenthes eymae seeds

    How old is too old?-39864095934_c2692a943b_o-jpg
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4608/4...96c9ba35_o.jpg
    the germination from 5 years old Nepenthes eymae seeds

    How old is too old?-20180302_224618-jpg
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4619/2...ae457a2a_o.jpg
    the germination from 5 years old Nepenthes eymae seeds

  2. #2
    nimbulan's Avatar
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    Those seedlings don't look like Nepenthes to me. Do you happen to have a picture of the seeds?

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    Lechenaultia's Avatar
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    Dear Nimbulan-san,

    Konnichiwa!

    Thank you very much for the reply. I must say the seeds/seedlings are definitely Nepenthes. I recommend you to edit your reply before I quote your reply.
    O.K. I will post the update.

    Kind regards from the Far East
    Last edited by Lechenaultia; 03-03-2018 at 09:48 AM.

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    nimbulan's Avatar
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    Regarding your viability question though, it is true that lowland seeds tend to have a shorter shelf life than highland seeds. I believe that typical refrigerator temperatures can have a negative impact on them as well. There are some species such as N. sanguinea, N. vieillardii, and N. pervillei that I know can maintain very high germination rates after a year or more in storage and I've even heard of people being able to successfully store N. sanguinea seeds in a freezer. I'm not aware that this is a widespread phenomenon with Nepenthes seeds though.

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    Lechenaultia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nimbulan View Post
    successfully store N. sanguinea seeds in a freezer. I'm not aware that this is a widespread phenomenon with Nepenthes seeds though.
    WOW!!!

    Dear Nimbulan-san,

    Konnichiwa!

    Thank you very much for the fantastic information!

    Kind regards from the Far East

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    hcarlton's Avatar
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    Those do not look like Nepenthes seeds that are sprouting, sorry. You might have sown old seeds, but there was something else either in the soil or stuck with them. The shape of the early cotyledons reminds me of a legume or the seeds of some swamp plants that have sprouted from sphagnum and peat for me, and not what I would expect of a Nepenthes (that there is a marked rounded swelling and hard line between the stem and cotyledons in some of those photos is not something ever seen in Nepenthes and they don't have a papery or translucent coating sticking to them when emerging from the seed coat) .
    Additionally, I have never heard of Nepenthes seeds that weren't sown within a few months of harvest ever germinating (those that take 18 months to sprout were at least on soil all that time, not stored), and even fridge temperatures can damage them, kill some, and in long term ruin viability altogether. They are tropical opportunistic plants, don't have mechanisms for seeds to survive long-term dry or cold storage.
    Everything has a reason, whether big or small. Never underestimate the power of what is or is not.
    There is far more to everything than meets the eye.
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    Lechenaultia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hcarlton View Post
    Those do not look like Nepenthes seeds that are sprouting, sorry. You might have sown old seeds, but there was something else either in the soil or stuck with them. The shape of the early cotyledons reminds me of a legume or the seeds of some swamp plants that have sprouted from sphagnum and peat for me, and not what I would expect of a Nepenthes (that there is a marked rounded swelling and hard line between the stem and cotyledons in some of those photos is not something ever seen in Nepenthes and they don't have a papery or translucent coating sticking to them when emerging from the seed coat) .
    Additionally, I have never heard of Nepenthes seeds that weren't sown within a few months of harvest ever germinating (those that take 18 months to sprout were at least on soil all that time, not stored), and even fridge temperatures can damage them, kill some, and in long term ruin viability altogether. They are tropical opportunistic plants, don't have mechanisms for seeds to survive long-term dry or cold storage.
    Oh dear!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lechenaultia View Post
    Oh dear!
    I'd still grow them out to see what they are. Might be something interesting!


    Just a random (but related, so maybe not so random) thought for the forum. Does the Svalbard Global Seed Vault have any Nepenthes seeds? If so, how do they keep them viable?


    .
    Last edited by Acro; 03-04-2018 at 05:49 PM.

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