Tips For Germinating Nicotiana Seeds.


Not only are Nicotiana flowers marvellous things for your retina to get all tingly about but also the chaps in the olfactory department do a little jig when a waft of Nicotiana scent comes bouncing its way up the nasal passages. Generally Nicotiana releases its scent in the evening as the clever little creature is trying to attract moths to pollinate it.

Some folk occasionally have trouble germinating the seeds….but it’s really easy if you follow a few rules…

How To Germinate Nicotiana Seeds:


*Sow your seeds on the SURFACE of your seed compost. They need light to germinate.

*I sow mine in modules and when the seeds germinate I just keep one seedling in each cell.

*Sow TINY pinches of the seed…if you sow thickly you will get hundreds and hundreds of tiny seedlings and they can get in the way of each other.

*Nicotiana likes a little bit of warmth before she will wiggle into life…so a window sill is a good idea.

*One issue with surface sown seeds is keeping them moist…some place their trays in a plastic bag….I tend to use a sheet of newspaper laid over the top of the tray. Try to find one with a picture of a rock and roll star on it…I have conducted many highly scientific studies with regards this…trust me…you will get better results. Water gently with one of those spray jobbies if you have one…or you can water from underneath if you prefer. With the spray gun you can pretend to be a 70’s cop busting a drugs gang…if you like….not that I do that…I’m too grown up.

After 10 days they are JUST starting to show themselves.

*Don’t let the soil get waterlogged.

*Germination should take ten days.

*After six weeks check the frosts have finished kicking about….harden off the plants…and plant outside. I generally plant out about Mid May.

OR sow outside after mid May…water soil first and firm seeds into the ground so they don’t blow away….these plants will flower later in the season than your indoor sown ones.

Nicotiana ‘White Trumpets’, ‘Lime Green’ & ‘Sensation’ all make wonderful cut flowers for your patch and can be found in a little seed shop I know.

Nicotiana 'Lime Green'.
Nicotiana ‘Lime Green’.
Nicotiana 'White Trumpets'.
Nicotiana ‘White Trumpets’.
Nicotiana sensation
Nicotiana ‘Sensation’.

Have fun!

Kind regards

Benjamin Higgledy

PS Other posts you may enjoy..

‘What Is A Hardy Annual?’

‘When Can I sow My Flower Seeds Directly Into The Soil?’