The Tasmanian blue gum tree, or eucalyptus globulus, is a member of the Myrtle family and a cousin to the clove, the guava and the allspice. The blue gum is a huge flowering tree, growing to heights of more than 220 feet. The tree takes its name from the blue, waxy substance on its leaves. Native to the open forests in southeastern Tasmania, the blue gum thrives in mild, damp climates and grows very well in the coastal areas of California. Blue gum is easily propagated by seed, but the immense size of the mature tree generally keeps homeowners from planting it. Begin the blue gum seed germination process in early February.
Moisten enough sand to completely bury the seeds. Place the sand in a plastic container and push the seeds into the sand. Close the container and refrigerate for three weeks.
Fill the planting pot with equal parts of potting soil and compost. Water the mixture well and allow the excess water to drain from the bottom of the pot.
Take the seed container from the refrigerator and remove the blue gum seeds from the sand. Lay them on the surface of the soil in the pot and cover them with a very thin layer of moist sand.
Place the pot in a well-lit area where the temperature remains 60 to 65 degrees F. Mist the surface of the soil, as needed, so that it remains moist.
Place the pot in the direct sun as soon as the seed sprouts. The seedlings will require all-day sun.
Water the the seedlings so that the soil remains moist but not soggy.
Transplant the seedlings when they have their second set of leaves. Carefully separate them and place each in its own 1-gallon pot filled with potting soil.
Things You Will Need
- Plastic container with a lid
- Coarse sand
- 4-inch planting pot (with drainage holes in bottom)
- Plant misting bottle
- Potting soil
- Compost, coarse-textured
- 1-gallon planting pots (with drainage holes in bottom)
- 5-10-10 fertilizer
- Refrigerating seeds is a process known as cold-moist stratification and it is applied to break a seed's dormancy.
- Fertilize one month after transplanting into the large pot. Use a 5-10-10 fertilizer, following the package directions.
- Blue gum saplings can be planted in their permanent home 10 to 18 weeks after they have germinated.
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