Video transcription

I'm Leon. This is Xotx-Tropico. Today, I'm going to show you a few tricks in germinating tropical seeds. Here, I have something quite unusual in the United States. I call it The Magic Bean. It has beautifully colored seeds. This they use to make necklaces in West Africa. These seeds came from Gambia. Now, the amazing thing is how responsive they are to water. They are waiting for the rainy season to arrive. Just a few minutes ago, I put some of these seeds in a cup of water and immediately they're swelling up, imbibing water and commencing the process of germination. That's an easy one. Often, we'll pour hot water over these hard seeds, about 180 degrees, shallow water, not deep. We want oxygen in the water, let them soak overnight. The seeds that have expanded, we'll plant. If they haven't expanded, we'll hit them with hot water again. We can do this repeatedly until they begin to show signs of life. Then we have seeds that are non-responsive to the hot water treatment, but are well worth cultivating. This is a very rare vine from New Guinea. This is considered one of the most beautiful vines in the world, very difficult to even obtain the seeds. This is Mucuna Voneti, The Red Jade Vine, fantastic hanging clusters of brilliant scarlet flowers but you have to file them. That's the trick. They're so hard, these are really meant to go down rivers, crashing against the rocks and be washed ashore to commence germination. So, we have to kind of simulate that. We're going to take a file, go into about the middle of the seed. There's a scar that runs three quarters of the way around the seed. We're going to go into the middle of that and we're going to start to file. We're going to file until we find the light layer that's underneath the brown seed coat. And this is the only way to germinate these. They will not come up unless you do this. And now that we've exposed the seed coat underneath, we can do the warm water treatment. If the seed is exposed like this, we generally use warm water, not the 180 degree water, let them soak overnight and if we've successfully penetrated the hard coat, they'll swell up and be ready for planting. Now for the planting, we like to make a drainy grainy mix. We'll use peat moss, about 30 percent, Perlite, about 40 percent, 50 percent, use some pumice and use some charcoal. We'll mix this up, put this into a low wide container for the correct oxygen balance. We'll moisten it and here are some of the seeds that have already imbibed water. We'll plant them, usually about the depth of the seed or half the depth of the seed itself. These seeds you can bury but not too much. You'll water it, put it in a warm place, a sunny window and soon The Magic Beans will start to grow. That's how you plant tropical seeds.