Preparation of seeds of annual asters.
From posh asters, grown in your own garden, you want to collect the seeds, not to part with their favorite colors. However, the attempt to obtain seeds with some asters sometimes unsuccessful - finding reasons it makes sense to explore the biological characteristics of the culture of asters.
Inflorescence consists of a basket of asters reed, located on the edge, and small tubular flowers in the middle, between which are arranged in a series of 1-2 flowers in transition. Small tubular flowers - bisexual, and Reed and transition - same-sex female. Annuals asters have the ability to self-pollination and cross-pollination. Tubular flowers are pollinated by their own pollen, and Reed and transient - Cross insects (pollen from tubular flowers of the same or different inflorescences).
Ornamental varieties of asters have terry inflorescences, consisting of reed or long tubular flowers, which are almost absent (or not visible) small yellow tubular. With increasing terry inflorescences their pollination more difficult and increases the duration of flowering asters (small tubular flowers live about 1 week, and Reed - 2-7 weeks). After pollination, tubular flowers fade, and Reed are decorative as long as not all pollinate tubular.
Among the variety of varieties of asters highly distinguished - give a large number of seeds, and low-productivity - producing few seeds (this is usually the most decorative asters). The smaller the doubleness of inflorescences asters, the more seeds produced and the faster they mature. The higher the doubleness of inflorescences asters, the smaller the small tubular flowers, respectively, and less tied seeds (in the inflorescences, consisting only of ray flowers, seeds almost tied). To save terry asters need to collect seeds from the most terry inflorescences - from seeds with less terry baskets in the future will not produce terry inflorescences.
In regions with a prolonged cold spring and autumn asters in soil and winter sowing is almost never possible to obtain seeds, because they bloom for a fortnight later and bloom for a month longer than asters grown seedling method - the seeds do not have time to mature before autumn frosts (aster bloom in 80-125 days after germination, and seed ripening occurs through 150-183 days).
Less than 160 days is required for seed maturation astram sortotipov Needle, pompoms, Early Wonder, ostrich feather. Up to 170 days ripen the seeds of asters Unicum, spherical, Madeleine, Hrizantemovidnaya, Peony-, Rozovidnaya, Waldersee Queen Market and Comet. More than 170 days is necessary for the ripening of astram American Spray, American Beauty, Victoria, California Gigantic, Dwarf King.
For earlier flowering asters in July-early August, it is necessary to sow the seeds for seedlings in late March-early April. In addition to extending the growing season is important to have plants in the season the sum of positive temperatures, so more successfully grown on aster seeds in regions with warm climates, where the warm spring and long dry autumn allow you to complete a full cycle of the plant. In the period of seed maturation is important to maintain the necessary soil moisture for asters - it also affects productivity.
Aster seeds of high quality can be obtained only from the strong healthy plants free from pests and diseases, so when growing seed asters should be strictly observed agrotechnics culture asters and crop rotation (planting asters return to its original place not earlier than 4-5 years) . Tiered branching shoots asters inhibits the formation and maturation of seeds, so it is necessary to leave the mother plant first and best inflorescences 3-6 (depending on the variety, and in the later grades 1 inflorescence), and delete the rest.
Aster seeds from different varieties ripen after about 40-60 days after the start of flowering (depending on weather conditions, duration of flowering asters changing and maturing period seed shifts). Dry baskets with ripe seeds collected in sunny dry weather. If the seeds before frost on the bushes asters have not matured fully, the bushes are transplanted into pots (aster easily tolerate a neat transplant), which are transported in a dry bright room for growing and ripening. On ripening inflorescence with fully dried reed flowers with good air exchange and a temperature of 15-20 degrees need about 15-20 days.
When ripening is necessary from time to time to turn plants for uniform illumination and ventilation inflorescences. After ripening seeds cleaned of plant residues, pour in hermetically sealed glass vessels, which were stored at low humidity and a temperature of about 2 degrees (otherwise the seeds quite quickly lose germination). Under optimal storage conditions aster seeds remain viable for high quality 3 years.