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Start Perennial Flowers From Seed: Easy Tips for Blanket Flowers, Catmint & More (2023)

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perennial flowers to start from seedYou’ve decided it’s time to start some perennial flowers from seed. What an exciting endeavor! As any seasoned gardener knows, growing perennials from seed allows you immense creative control. You get to choose from a wealth of seed varieties and watch your tiny seedlings transform into breathtaking blooms.

When starting perennials from seed, embrace the power to shape your landscape as you desire. With a bit of patience and the proper techniques, you’ll be rewarded with hardy, long-lived plants that return each year.

Incorporating perennial flowers like blanket flowers into your beds liberates you from the confines of traditional annuals. Go ahead, plant those seeds and make your mark! Remember, a beautiful garden starts with your vision.

This year, channel your inner botanist and start some unforgettable perennials from seed.

Key Takeaways

  • Use small containers and seed starting mix.
  • Provide proper light, warmth, and moisture for germination.
  • LED grow lights ensure robust growth if natural light is insufficient.
  • Disturb roots minimally when transplanting.

Starting Perennial Flowers From Seed

Starting Perennial Flowers From Seed
You can get a head start on your garden by starting some perennial favorites indoors weeks before it’s safe to transplant outside. Choose varieties suited to your zone and conditions. Check seed packets for when to sow indoors.

Use small containers and seed starting mix. Provide light and warmth for germination. Gently water. When seedlings emerge, pot up individually. Gradually harden off before transplanting. Space transplants properly. With a little patience and care, starting perennials from seed, you’ll be rewarded with flowers that return year after year.

Planting Seeds

Planting Seeds
While preparing the soil, gently press the seeds into the ground at the recommended depth before lightly covering them with soil. That way, you’ll give those wee seeds their best shot at sprouting up when the time is right.

4 tips for planting perennial flower seeds:

  1. Use a seed starting mix for optimal drainage and moisture retention.
  2. Consider bottom heat for quicker germination of some varieties.
  3. LED grow lights ensure robust growth if natural light is insufficient.
  4. When transplanting, disturb roots as little as possible and harden off gradually.

Understanding the Germination Process

Understanding the Germination Process
After being planted, perennial seeds require the proper conditions of moisture, warmth, and sometimes light or scarification for the seed embryo to emerge and begin growing.

Moisture: Seeds need consistent moisture to swell and germinate. Too dry and seeds die.

Warmth: Most seeds require soil temperatures of 65-75°F to germinate. Use a heating mat or grow lights if needed.

Light: Some seeds need light to germinate. Expose to sun or grow lights. Others prefer darkness under soil.

When sowing perennial seeds, research specific needs for germination. Create proper conditions indoors or wait for outdoor conditions. Monitor and adjust as needed until seeds successfully emerge. With care, your flowering perennials will grow.

Planning Your Garden

Planning Your Garden
Lend thought to deciding where perennials suit the sunwise, spacing for growth, and combining with annuals in the plot. When planning your garden, consider the light requirements of your perennials. Most need full sun to thrive.

Space plants appropriately for their mature size to avoid overcrowding. Combining perennials with quick-blooming annuals can extend color throughout the seasons. With patience and planning, your perennial garden will flourish for years to come.

Tips for Starting Perennials From Seed

Tips for Starting Perennials From Seed
Glad you’re starting some perennials from seed! Some great ones to try include Large-Flowered Tickseed for its bright yellow daisy-like blooms, Maiden Pinks for their ruffled flowers in shades of pink, white, and red, Catmint for its airy spikes of lavender flowers and attractive gray-green foliage, Oxeye False Sunflower for its bright yellow daisy flowers perfect for cutting, and Blanket Flower for its vibrant red and gold blossoms.

All are easy to grow from seed with a bit of patience. Be sure to provide light and consistent moisture for the best germination results.

Let me know if you need any other tips for starting these perennials from seed!

Large-Flowered Tickseed (Coreopsis Grandiflora)

You’ll adore those bright, cheery faces of large-flowered tickseed lighting up your garden bed every summer. Sow seeds in spring for sturdy plants with bright yellow blooms midsummer into fall.

Maiden Pinks (Dianthus Deltoides)

Your devotion nurtures the blushing blooms. Spread their joy easily from seed.

  • Sow in spring.
  • Full sun site.
  • Loamy, well-drained soil.

The cheery pinks thrive when tended well.

Catmint (Nepeta Nervosa)

Drop some catmint seeds in early spring for a tough, drought-tolerant perennial that will reward you with fragrant foliage and bee balm-like flowers throughout summer. Catmint enjoys full sun and average soil. Space plants 12-18 inches apart. Use leaves in teas and poultices.

Oxeye, False Sunflower (Heliopsis Helianthoides Scabra)

For planting oxeye daisies, soak the seeds before sowing indoors 6 weeks prior to transplanting outside after the last frost. Oxeye daisies attract beneficial pollinators and provide easy-cut flowers. Self-seeding varieties spread abundantly in gardens.

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia X Grandiflora)

Gaillardia’s cheery daisy-like flowers thrive when directly sown outdoors after the last spring frost. Blanket flowers burst forth in summer’s heat with yellow ray florets surrounding a bold red center disk, recalling sunny fields.

Tolerating heat and drying remarkably, the blossoms persist, prolonging the glory.

A Few More Perennial Flowers to Start From Seed

A Few More Perennial Flowers to Start From Seed
After learning how to start perennials from seed indoors, you’re ready to try sowing a few more varieties directly in the garden this season.

  1. Poppies – Lovely single and double blooms in spring and early summer. Broadcast seeds in the fall.
  2. Columbine – Cottage garden favorite with bell-shaped flowers. Sow in spring or fall.
  3. Coneflower – Striking daisy-like flowers ideal for cutting. Sow in early spring.

Give each of these perennials plenty of space to reach their mature size. Follow planting guidelines and make sure seeds get sufficient light. With the right care and conditions, you’ll be rewarded with years of beauty from these hardy plants grown from seed.

What will you try in your garden this year?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the best time of year to start perennial flower seeds indoors?

Friend, for abundant blossoms, sow seeds in spring when the soil warms and frosts wane. Though slow to sprout, with patience and care, your garden will overflow with nature’s bounty.

How long does it take for perennial flower seeds to germinate?

Friend, starting perennial seeds is a waiting game. Germination takes eons – the seeds emerge according to their whims, not yours. Still, with patience and care, these temperamental beings will flower eventually.

Should I use bottom heat when starting perennial flower seeds?

You don’t need bottom heat when starting perennial flower seeds. Patiently wait for slow, staggered germination at cool indoor temperatures. Adding artificial heat risks drying out or cooking delicate seeds. Instead, focus on providing even moisture and gentle light.

How much space do I need under grow lights for my perennial seedlings?

You’ll need about 4-6 inches between the tops of the seedlings and the grow lights. Space the seedlings 2-3 inches apart. This allows adequate light exposure and air circulation to prevent diseases.

Can I transplant perennial seedlings outside before all chance of frost has passed?

No, don’t transplant perennial seedlings outdoors until after all chance of frost has passed. Their young roots and shoots are too tender to withstand freezing temperatures, which could kill them.


You’ve embarked on a rewarding journey into the enchanting world of perennial gardening. With some patience and care, these hardy plants will reward your efforts for years to come. Starting perennials from seed requires more time than buying plants, but the process connects you profoundly with the natural rhythms of growth.

Take comfort in knowing countless gardeners have successfully nurtured numerous perennial flowers from tiny seeds. By following the simple tricks outlined here, you can also fill your gardens with waves of color from blanket flowers, catmint, and more.

So plant those perennial flower seeds with confidence and tend them with love – your devotion will blossom into a lifetime of beauty.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.