Cold Moist Stratification (CMS)

Only needed for seeds that CMS is stated 

Starting From Seed

Seed Instructions

For Spring Planting

Cold Moist Stratification is required for these seeds to germinate successfully.


Fill a small plastic container or bowl with 1 inch of cold tap water or spring water (If you live in the city your water will contain fluoride, chlorine and many other contaminants that will result in poor germination.) Stir the seeds up a bit to ensure they are all moistened by the water, otherwise they will float on top of others and not get the moisture they need to properly stratify.


Add the desired amount of seeds you want to germinate into the container and put a lid on it or a piece of plastic wrap to cover so you don't have spillage or evaporation.

It's a good idea to label the container with the type of seeds and the start date of the cold moist stratification process.


Put the container into your refrigerator for recommended number of days listed by the plant species.


After the recommended days of cold moist stratification is done, you can plant the seeds outside in the spring under a very light amount of soil or you can put them in pots with soil. Whichever you prefer.

In nature the seeds are just dropped on the ground and the rain slowly pushes them into the soil and the leaves cover them in the fall and compost down so they will do much better with a very light cover of soil.


Once temperatures reach over 65 degrees F outdoors the germination process will begin. For indoor growing the temperature should be kept around 70-75 degrees F for optimal growth. Keep soil moistened with a spray bottle or misting hose once a day and seeds will germinate in 10-20 days. 

Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

​CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

AIr temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-12 days



Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 8-14 days



Purple Milkweed (Asclepias purpurascens)

CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 7-15 days



Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

12 hour soak in room temp. water

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata)

12 hour soak in room temp. water

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Showy Milkweed (Asclepias speciosa)

12 hour soak in room temp. water

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata)

12 hour soak in room temp. water

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

​Germination time: 5-10 days



Prairie Milkweed (Asclepias sullivantii)

CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees

Germination time: 8-15 days



Tropical Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica)

12 hour soak in room temp water

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees

​Germination time: 5-10 days



Wild Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 12-21 days



New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees

Germination time: 5-10 days



Scarlet Bee Balm (Monarda didyma)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Moist

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



​Little Bluestem (Schyzachyrium scoparium)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Meadow Blazing Star (Liatris ligulistylis)

CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 7-14 days



Dense Blazing Star (Liatris spicata)

CMS 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 7-14 days



Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Orange Coneflower (Rudbeckia fulgida)

Cms 30 days

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees

Germination time: 12-21 days



Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Purple Prairie Clover (Dalea purpurea)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average with mycorrhizal fungi (IMPORTANT!)

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 4-8 days



Sundial Lupine (Lupinus perennis)

12 hour warm water soak

Soil: Average with mycorrhizal fungi (IMPORTANT!)

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 4-8 days



Lead Plant (Amorpha canescens)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average with mycorrhizal fungi (IMPORTANT!)

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 4-8 days



Wild Blue Indigo (Baptisia australis)

Slightly scarify with sandpaper & 12 hour soak in room temp water

Soil: Average with mycorrhizal fungi (IMPORTANT!)

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 7-10 days



False Sunflower (Heliopsis helianthoides)

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees

Germination time: 5-10 days



Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum)

No-pretreatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

Germination time: 5-10 days



Monarch Habitat Mix / Wildflower Habitat Seed Mix

When spring weather is consistently above 60 degrees during daytime hours

​Prepare soil bed area in spring to scatter seeds on

Water soil bed thoroughly

Scatter seeds

Water daily (unless it rains) for 4 weeks.

Sprouts should start to show after 10-15 days



California Poppy

No pre-treatment needed

Soil: Average

Air temp: 70-75 degrees F

​Germination time: 5-10 days