How to Plant Perennial Seeds


Nothing is quite as thrilling as seeing your hard work pay off when little seedlings sprout from properly sown seeds in early spring. Perennial seeds offer extra incentive to sow, as they are cost effective and provide years worth of enjoyment and several plants from just one well planned effort in early spring.

Step 1

Choose a site with good drainage and sun exposure. Some perennials prefer a little shad and others full sun, so know what your seeds will require when they mature to avoid the disappointment of poor growth later on in the season.

Step 2

Prepare the site for seed sowing. Till the ground to a depth of six to eight inches and mix in an organic compost to provide nutrients to the plants over time. Remove rocks, weeds or other debris to eliminate possible obstructions to root production.

Step 3

Till in a balanced fertilizer to continually feed the plants over the coming growing seasons. Follow instructions as to rate of application per square foot, and be cautious not to overfertilize as more is not better. Overfertilization can cause a host of problems, including aggressive foliage and skimpy flowers.

Step 4

Dig shallow trenches in the soil half an inch deep. Water well, then fill the bottom of the trench with vermiculite. Create another shallow trench in the vermiculite and moisten with a little water.

Step 5

Follow seed packet guidelines for seed spacing. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of vermiculite.

Step 6

Water with a gentle spray, to avoid splashing the seeds around.

Step 7

Cover the seed bed with mulch to retain moisture. Once the seedlings are visible, remove mulch to let the sunlight bathe the small plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Perennial seeds
  • Organic compost
  • Balanced fertilizer
  • Vermiculite
  • Mulch


  • Purdue University Extension Service, Growing Perennial Flowers
  • Virginia Cooperative Extension, Perennials: Culture, Maintenance and Propagation
  • Ohio State University Extension, Master Gardener: Plant Propagation
Keywords: planting perennial seeds, perennial seed germination, preparing perennial seed beds

About this Author

Desirae Roy began writing in 2009. After earning certification as an interpreter for the deaf, Roy earned a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education from Eastern Washington University. Part of her general studies included a botany course leading to a passion for the natural world.