Mandchurian Linden (Tilia mandshurica) Dry Hulled
Other names- Basswood, Lime Tree, Bee Tree
A refreshing herb tea is made from the flowers. A very good chocolate substitute is made from a paste of the ground fruits and flowers. Young leaves used in salads and as sandwich wraps.
The aroma of the flowers on a humid summer evening is wonderful and is something that will not be forgotten. Bees, literally by the thousands, will visit these blooms. They are irresistible to them.
Manchurian Lime seeds have a deep dormancy within them, this requires a degree of patience to overcome and it is usually quite easy to get high levels of germination if the correct procedures are followed.
First prepare a free draining substrate into which the seeds are to be mixed, this can be a 50/50 mixture of compost and sharp sand, or perlite, vermiculite. The chosen substrate needs to be moist (but not wet), if you can squeeze water out of it with your hand it is too wet and your seeds may drown and die. Mix the seeds into the substrate, making sure that their is enough volume of material to keep the seeds separated.
Place the seed mixture into a clear plastic bag (freezer bags, especially zip-lock bags are very useful for this -provided a little gap is left in the seal for air exchange) If it is not a zip-lock type bag it needs to be loosely tied. Then write the date on the bag so that you know when the pre-treatment was started.
The seeds first require a period of warm pre-treatment and need to be kept in temperatures of 68 degrees for a period of at least 16 weeks - it is not critical if it lasts a week or two longer than this. During this time make sure that the pre-treatment medium does not dry out at any stage or it will be ineffective!
Next the seeds require a cold period to break the final part of the dormancy, this is easily achieved by placing the bag in the fridge at for at least 16 weeks (although it can take as many as 16 weeks for signs of germination to show). It is quite possible for the seeds to germinate in the bag at these temperatures when they are ready to do so, if they do, just remove them from the bag and carefully plant them.
When the period of pre treatment has finished the seed should be ready to be planted. Small quantities can be sown in pots or seed trays filled with a good quality compost and cover them with a thin layer of compost no more than 1 cm deep. For larger quantities it is easiest to sow the seeds in a well prepared seedbed outdoors once the warm and cold pre-treatments have finished and wait for the seedlings to appear.
Do not expose newly sown seeds to temperatures above 80 degrees.. Keep the seedlings well watered and weed free. Growth in the first year is usually between 4 to 19" depending on the time of germination and cultural techniques and developing seedlings are usually trouble free. Allow them to grow for 1 or 2 years before planting them in a permanent position.
Packet - 20 seeds