Dutchman's pipe is a perennial growing evergreen vine that is also known by the name of calico flower and pipe vine. It produces unusual S-shaped 3-inch greenish-white flowers that resemble a Calabash smoking pipe. Planting freshly gathered Dutchman's pipe seeds is easily done from late spring through fall. Planting purchased seeds requires some preparation in order to interrupt the dormancy of the seeds.
Preparing Dutchman's Pipe Seeds
Collect the seed pods from a Dutchman's pipe vine when they are dry and start to turn brown. You can do this from summer through fall.
Cut open or squeeze open the seed pods to remove the Dutchman's pipe seeds from their pods.
Cut, nick or file off a section from the seed-coat on each of the seeds. This will help to improve the rate of germination.
Plant the Dutchman's pipe seeds as soon as possible. (See section 2 for planting seeds). If you are planting purchased seeds proceed to step 5.
Measure out approximately 1 cup of sphagnum peat moss. Place the peat moss into a sieve or colander. Pour tap water over the moss until it is damp but not so wet that it is dripping with water.
Place the seeds into a zipper top plastic bag. Place the moss on top of the seeds then put the bag into a refrigerator for a three month cold storage at approximately 35 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Separate the Dutchman's pipe seeds from the moss after the three month cold storage has passed, and pot them up.
Planting Dutchman's Pipe Seeds
Fill up 4-inch plastic pots with sterilized seed raising mix to within 1/2 inch from the top.
Place the 4-inch pots into a shallow tray. Pour about 1-inch of water into the tray, and let the mix in the pots soak up the water until the mix is well dampened. Let the water drain away from the pots before proceeding.
Place the seeds into a shallow ceramic or metal bowl. Pour approximately 1-inch of water over the seeds, and let them soak for no more than 24 hours.
Poke 3/8 inch deep holes, one per pot, in the center of each of the 4-inch pots.
Drop one Dutchman's pipe seed into each of the holes.
Cover up the seeds with no more than 3/8 inch of seed raising mix.
Place the pots in a location where it will remain between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not place the pots in direct sunlight, but try and provide six to eight hours of indirect light daily. Keep the seed raising mix moist, but not soggy damp. Germination of Dutchman's pipe can begin in three weeks or take as long as three months.