How to Grow Trailing Lobelia

Written by brynne chandler
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Flowering vines are beautiful additions to any front porch, balcony or patio. Living in a cold climate can make it hard to enjoy them year round, but since it's so easy to sprout hanging plants, there's no need to deprive yourself. Trailing lobelia seeds need light to germinate, and don't do well if it is too hot or too cold, so it's a good idea to invest in "grow lights" for lobelias.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Lobelia seeds
  • 2-inch pots or clean egg carton
  • Spray mister
  • Potting soil
  • Cling film
  • Grow light

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  1. 1

    Fill your 2-inch pots or egg carton cups 3/4 full with potting soil. Use the spray mister to gently moisten the soil.

  2. 2

    Sprinkle three to six seeds into each pot or cup. Do not bury them in the soil, because trailing lobelia seeds need light to germinate.

  3. 3

    Use the cling film to cover the pots or egg cartons, and then place them under a grow light. Most windows are going to be too hot during full sunlight and too cold during the night, so a grow light is the best way to germinate trailing lobelia seeds. Check your seeds daily; if the soil dries out, use the spray mister to moisten it.

  4. 4

    Once the seeds have sprouted and the shoots are 2 to 3 inches tall, remove the plastic. Keep the sprouts under the grow light until all danger of frost has passed.

  5. 5

    Trailing lobelia needs to harden before it can live outside permanently. Put the pots or egg carton outside for a few hours every day in a shady spot and bring them in at night. Over the course of two weeks, gradually increase their exposure to sunlight as you increase the time they spend outdoors.

  6. 6

    Plant your trailing lobelia outdoors once the two-week hardening period is done. They do particularly well in hanging pots.

Tips and warnings

  • Add some compost to the bottom of the pots when you transfer your seedlings, to help them grow strong roots.
  • Do not put your trailing lobelia in a windy spot because too much wind will cause its tips to turn brown.

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