Monday, May 3, 2010

A tough nut to crack

A Lotus flower bud and seed pod.
When Mom told me that the Lotus plant is already forming seeds where the spent flower (the very first in our garden) used to be, I immediately searched the net for info on how to grow Lotus plant from seed. With the knowledge fresh in my head, I called home and told Mom the steps to take to entice the seed to germinate.

First scarify part of the seed using a rough object like a file, until the flesh of the seed is almost visible. This will help the seedling break out of its hard shell when it begins to germinate. Then drop the seed into a container that has several inches of water and put the container in a warm place, preferably where the sun can shine on it. Then let nature take over, just change the water often.

A few weeks later, I was on the phone with dear Mom and she was complaining how hard the seed of the Lotus plant was. It took her almost an hour to scarify the seed with a knife. I told her she should have used a file. She replied: "If a sharp knife could not crack open that seedcoat how can a nail file help? It's harder than the shell of a chestnut."

I could not say anything more. If I were there I could have been the one doing that and knowing that Mom is a very patient lady and she almost gave up, I know I would have given up in a couple of minutes.

The seeds of the Lotus are almost ready to pop out. A plastic bag is waiting underneath to catch the seeds when they decide to come out of the pod.

Anyway, had she used a rasp or wood file, it would have been more effective than a knife or nail file. But, she accomplished her goal anyway (the hard way) and now all she needs to do is wait.

And while she's waiting, she can experiment on the other seeds that are just about ripe for harvest.

This is just another of those that frustrates me about the pictures I get from home. It doesn't help if the person I ask to take pictures just don't care about the quality of the images.