Miracle Fruit(Synsepalum dulcificum) Seed Germination and Seedling Care:
1- Clean seeds.
Soak them in water for 1/2 hour and gently clean the seeds with brush and using very mild soap solution.
Rinse seeds with plenty of clean water.
Make this operation as aseptic as possible.
Note: No peeling, scarification or breaking of the outer shell is needed.
If you get seeds with the dried fruit on it (this helps preserve the seed viability) leave as is and plant with skin.
2- Hydrate seeds:
Soak seeds for 24 hours more in 3 parts clean water and 1 part 3% Hydrogen Peroxide.
Move the seed tray once in a while to circulate water.
This will hydrate your seeds and get them ready for germination.
5- Prepare germination substrate:
Aquire a good germination substrate in your local gardening store.
Check if substrate comes sterilized, if not, sterilize your substrate by soaking it with boiling water.
Miracle Fruit prefers a slightly acidic soil. A PH of 5.8 to 6.2 will be best.
To make the soil acidic, I usually mix around 5% of used coffee grinds with the substrate by volume.
6- Plant seeds
Plant seeds under substrate about 1/4″ deep
Keep substrate moist but never soaked.
Use deep germination trays or individual tall germination pots.
The Miracle Fruit plant first shoots a long radical root, you do not want to restrict radical root growth using shallow planting containers. This is why you do not see any progress on the surface at first.
Do not compact substrate too much. Let the watering process do that.
You want a loose and oxygenated substrate.
Germination should start after 3-16 weeks.
7- Care of Seedlings
When seedlings appear, keep them under shade but well lighted for the first 4 months.
Carefully transplant seedlings to 8-12″ diameter deep pots without disturb the seedling’s root system too much.
Water pots after transplanting.
Use the same substrate as outline above for the pots.
Gradually introduce them to more light in the next 6 months.
If weather permits, take them out outside for 1-2 hours of sunlight.
Be careful! Miracle Fruit is a tropical shrub, so it will not stand cold temperatures or freezes.
Your seedlings can die if exposed to chills.
Gradually introduce the seedlings to more light
Feed seedlings with general purpose plant fertilizer once per month.
Expose seedlings to about 3-4 hours of sun when they reach the 6 leaf stage.