How to Grow Lobelia From Seed

Overview

If you're looking for an easy way to add a spark of color to your flowerbeds, lobelia can fill the bill. Lobelia is easy to grow and is happy nearly anyplace, including borders, rock gardens, hanging containers or as a ground cover. Start lobelia seeds indoors about two months before the last expected frost for your area.

Step 1

Fill several 2-inch pots with commercial potting mix. Scatter a few of the tiny lobelia seeds on the soil, and press them lightly into the soil with your finger.

Step 2

Spray the soil with a fine mister, and cover it with a piece of plastic wrap. Put the trays or pots in a warm place in indirect sunlight. If you live in a cloudy climate, a grow light is the best way to ensure the seeds get enough light to germinate.

Step 3

Check the soil daily, and if it appears to be getting dry, mist it lightly. Don't overwater, because excess moisture can cause the lobelia seeds to rot.

Step 4

Remove the plastic when the seedlings emerge from the soil, but leave them in a warm spot or under a grow light until you're ready to plant them outdoors. When the seedlings are about 2 to 3 inches tall, thin them to one seedling per pot.

Step 5

Choose a sunny spot to plant the lobelia seedlings. Although lobelia will grow in partial shade, it will bloom much more in full sun. Remove weeds from the planting site, use a hoe or garden fork to cultivate the top 8 inches of soil, and mix in a scoop of compost.

Step 6

Plant the lobelia, leaving at least 6 inches between each seedling, and water them with a hose and spray nozzle. After the lobelia blooms for the first time, feed it a water-soluble fertilizer, following the manufacturer's directions. Water the lobelia every other day in hot, windy weather.

Things You'll Need

  • 2-inch pots
  • Commercial potting mix
  • Lobelia seeds
  • Mister
  • Clear plastic
  • Grow light (optional)
  • Hoe or garden fork
  • Compost
  • Hose
  • Spray nozzle
  • Water-soluble fertilizer

References

  • How to Grow Lobelia From Seed
  • Lobelia Flower Seed
  • Lobelia Crystal Palace Seed, Lobelia
Keywords: lobelia seeds, potting mix, rock gardens

About this Author

M.H. Dyer is a longtime writer, editor and proofreader. She has been a contributor to the "East-Oregonian Newspaper" and "See Jane Run" magazine, and is author of a memoir, “The Tumbleweed Chronicles, a Sideways Look at Life." She holds an Master of Fine Arts from National University, San Diego.