how to grow eucalyptus from seed

How to Grow Your Own Eucalyptus Tree from Seed

Key Takeaways
– Eucalyptus is a beautiful, fragrant, and medicinal plant that can be grown from seed in warm and dry climates.
– To grow eucalyptus from seed, you need to choose the right variety, obtain fresh and high-quality seeds, prepare the soil and containers, sow the seeds, germinate them, transplant them, and care for them.
– Growing eucalyptus from seed is easy, rewarding, and fun if you follow these simple steps and tips.
– Eucalyptus has many benefits, such as purifying the air, repelling insects, treating various ailments, and making various crafts.

Do you love the scent and sight of eucalyptus? Do you want to have a beautiful, fragrant, and medicinal plant in your garden? If so, you might want to try growing eucalyptus from seed.

Eucalyptus is a genus of over 700 species of flowering trees and shrubs native to Australia. Some of the most popular varieties are silver dollar, lemon-scented, rainbow, and blue gum. Eucalyptus has attractive foliage that comes in various shapes, sizes, and colors. It also produces fragrant flowers that attract bees, butterflies, and birds.

Eucalyptus has a refreshing and invigorating scent that can purify the air, repel insects, and soothe the senses. Eucalyptus also has many medicinal properties that can treat various ailments, such as coughs, colds, asthma, sinusitis, arthritis, wounds, infections, and more. Eucalyptus leaves can be used for various crafts, such as wreaths, bouquets, garlands, candles, soap, and more.

Growing eucalyptus from seed is easy, rewarding, and fun if you follow these simple steps and tips. In this article, we will show you how to grow eucalyptus from seed in a clear and chronological order. We will also explain the basic requirements and benefits of growing eucalyptus from seed. By the end of this article, you will be able to grow your own eucalyptus tree from seed and enjoy its beauty and aroma.

How to Grow Eucalyptus from Seed: The Steps

A photo of eucalyptus seeds being sprinkled over moist soil in a pot

The process of growing eucalyptus from seed is not very complicated or difficult. However, it does require some patience and attention. Here are the steps that you need to follow to grow eucalyptus from seed:

1. Choose the right variety of eucalyptus for your climate and purpose

There are over 700 species of eucalyptus, but not all of them are suitable for growing in your area or for your purpose. You need to choose a variety that can thrive in your climate and meet your expectations. Some factors that you need to consider when choosing a variety of eucalyptus are:

  • Climate: Eucalyptus is native to Australia and prefers warm and dry climates. It can tolerate frost and drought to some extent, but not extreme cold or wet conditions. If you live in a cold or humid area, you might want to choose a hardy or dwarf variety that can withstand low temperatures or high humidity.
  • Size: Eucalyptus can grow very fast and tall, reaching up to 200 feet in height and 10 feet in diameter. It needs ample space to spread its roots and branches. If you have limited space or want to grow eucalyptus indoors or in pots, you might want to choose a small or compact variety that can be pruned or controlled easily.
  • Purpose: Eucalyptus has different uses and benefits depending on its variety. Some varieties are more suitable for medicinal purposes than others. Some varieties have more ornamental value than others. Some varieties have more aromatic or colorful foliage than others. You need to choose a variety that matches your needs and preferences.

Some of the most popular varieties of eucalyptus are:

  • Silver dollar (Eucalyptus cinerea): This is a small to medium-sized tree that has round silvery-green leaves that are often used in floral arrangements. It has a strong minty scent that can repel insects and clear congestion.
  • Lemon-scented (Eucalyptus citriodora): This is a tall tree that has long lance-shaped leaves that have a lemony fragrance. It has white flowers that attract bees and butterflies. It has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that can heal wounds and infections.
  • Rainbow (Eucalyptus deglupta): This is a large tree that has smooth bark that peels off in strips, revealing different colors, such as green, blue, purple, orange, and pink. It has glossy green leaves that have a faint eucalyptus smell. It is mainly grown for its ornamental value and tropical appeal.
  • Blue gum (Eucalyptus globulus): This is a giant tree that has blue-green leaves that are the source of eucalyptus oil. It has white flowers that produce nectar for honey. It has antibacterial and antiviral properties that can treat respiratory and skin problems.

You can buy eucalyptus seeds online or from a local nursery. Make sure you buy fresh and high-quality seeds from a reputable source.

2. Prepare the soil and containers for germination

To grow eucalyptus from seed, you need to prepare the soil and containers for germination. You will need:

  • A well-draining potting mix that contains peat moss or coco coir, perlite or vermiculite, and compost or fertilizer.
  • Small pots or trays with drainage holes that are about 2 inches in diameter and depth.
  • A spray bottle filled with water.

To prepare the soil and containers, you need to:

  • Fill the pots or trays with the potting mix, leaving about half an inch of space from the top.
  • Moisten the potting mix with water using the spray bottle. Do not make it too wet or soggy.
  • Label the pots or trays with the name of the variety of eucalyptus that you are planting.

3. Sow the seeds thinly and evenly on the surface of the moistened soil

To sow the seeds, you need to:

  • Sprinkle the seeds thinly and evenly on the surface of the moistened soil in each pot or tray. Do not cover them with soil, as they need light to germinate.
  • Press the seeds lightly into the soil with your finger or a spoon.
  • Mist the seeds lightly with water using the spray bottle.

4. Place the pots or trays in a warm and sunny spot

To germinate the seeds, you need to:

  • Place the pots or trays in a warm and sunny spot, such as a windowsill or a greenhouse. The ideal temperature for germination is between 65°F and 75°F.
  • Keep the soil moist but not soggy, and mist the seeds daily with water using the spray bottle.
  • Avoid exposing the seeds to direct sunlight, as it can dry out or burn them.

5. Wait for the seeds to germinate

The time it takes for the seeds to germinate depends on the variety and conditions. It can take anywhere from 10 days to 6 weeks for the seeds to germinate. You will see tiny green sprouts emerging from the soil.

6. Transplant the seedlings to larger pots or directly to the ground

When the seedlings have at least two pairs of true leaves, they are ready to be transplanted to larger pots or directly to the ground. To transplant the seedlings, you need to:

  • Choose a sunny and well-drained location for your eucalyptus tree. Make sure it has enough space to grow and is not near buildings, power lines, or other plants.
  • Dig a hole that is twice as wide and deep as the root ball of your seedling.
  • Gently remove your seedling from its original pot or tray, being careful not to damage its roots.
  • Place your seedling in the hole, making sure that its root collar (the point where the stem meets the roots) is level with the ground.
  • Fill in the hole with soil, gently firming it around your seedling.
  • Water your seedling well, and apply some mulch around it to conserve moisture and prevent weeds.

7. Water and fertilize your eucalyptus tree regularly

To care for your eucalyptus tree, you need to:

  • Water your eucalyptus tree regularly, especially during the first year of growth. The soil should be moist but not soggy. You can check the soil moisture by inserting your finger into it. If it feels dry, water your tree. If it feels wet, wait until it dries out a bit before watering again.
  • Fertilize your eucalyptus tree once or twice a year, preferably in spring and summer. You can use a balanced fertilizer that is suitable for trees and shrubs, following the instructions on the label.
  • Prune your eucalyptus tree if you want to shape it or encourage bushier growth. You can prune your tree in late winter or early spring, before new growth starts. You can remove any dead, diseased, or damaged branches, as well as any branches that are crossing or rubbing each other.
  • Cut back the main stem or leader if you want to limit the height of your tree, or leave it intact if you want your tree to grow tall.
  • Trim the lateral branches or side shoots if you want to thin out the canopy of your tree, or leave them alone if you want your tree to have a dense foliage.
  • Use sharp and clean pruning tools, and make clean and smooth cuts at an angle just above a leaf node or bud.
  • Apply some pruning sealant or wound dressing to the cuts to prevent infection and bleeding.

How to Grow Eucalyptus from Seed: The Tips

how to grow eucalyptus from seed

Growing eucalyptus from seed is not very hard, but it does require some care and attention. Here are some additional tips and tricks to help you succeed in growing eucalyptus from seed:

How to stratify the seeds to improve germination rates

Stratification is a process of exposing the seeds to cold and moist conditions for a period of time to break their dormancy and stimulate their germination. Some varieties of eucalyptus seeds benefit from stratification, especially if they are collected from cold regions or stored for a long time. To stratify the seeds, you need to:

  • Mix the seeds with some moist peat moss or vermiculite in a plastic bag or container.
  • Seal the bag or container and place it in the refrigerator for about 4 weeks.
  • Check the bag or container every week and mist the seeds if they are dry.
  • After 4 weeks, take out the bag or container and sow the seeds as usual.

How to protect the seedlings from pests and diseases

Eucalyptus seedlings are vulnerable to pests and diseases, such as aphids, mealybugs, scale insects, spider mites, caterpillars, fungal infections, and root rot. To protect the seedlings from pests and diseases, you need to:

  • Inspect the seedlings regularly for any signs of infestation or infection, such as holes, spots, webs, sticky substances, or discoloration on the leaves or stems.
  • Remove any infected or infested parts of the seedlings with scissors or tweezers, and dispose of them in a sealed bag or bin.
  • Spray the seedlings with a mild solution of water and soap, neem oil, or insecticidal soap to kill or repel the pests. You can also use some natural predators, such as ladybugs or lacewings, to control the pests.
  • Apply some fungicide or baking soda solution to the seedlings to prevent or treat fungal infections. You can also use some beneficial bacteria or fungi, such as mycorrhizae or trichoderma, to enhance the health and resistance of the seedlings.
  • Avoid overwatering or underwatering the seedlings, as this can cause stress and make them more susceptible to pests and diseases. Water only when the soil is dry to the touch, and make sure there is good drainage in the pots or trays.

How to harvest and dry eucalyptus leaves for various purposes

Eucalyptus leaves can be harvested and dried for various purposes, such as making tea, oil, medicine, crafts, and more. To harvest and dry eucalyptus leaves, you need to:

  • Cut some healthy and mature branches from your eucalyptus tree with pruning shears. Choose branches that have plenty of leaves and flowers if possible.
  • Strip off any lower leaves that are close to the stem with your fingers or a knife.
  • Tie the branches together in small bunches with twine or rubber bands.
  • Hang the bunches upside down in a warm, dry, dark, and well-ventilated place, such as an attic, closet, or shed. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can fade the color and aroma of the leaves.
  • Leave the bunches hanging for about 2 weeks until they are completely dry and crisp. You can check by bending a leaf. If it snaps easily, it is dry enough.
  • Store the dried leaves in an airtight container or bag in a cool and dark place. You can also crush them into smaller pieces if you want.

How to propagate eucalyptus from cuttings or division if you want more plants

Eucalyptus can be propagated from cuttings or division if you want more plants. This is faster and easier than growing from seed. To propagate eucalyptus from cuttings or division, you need to:

  • Cuttings: Take some healthy and young stems from your eucalyptus tree with pruning shears. Choose stems that are about 6 inches long and have at least 3 pairs of leaves. Strip off the lower leaves and dip the cut end in some rooting hormone. Insert the cuttings into some moist potting mix in small pots or trays. Cover the pots or trays with a plastic bag or dome to create a humid environment. Place them in a warm and bright spot, but not in direct sunlight. Keep the soil moist but not soggy, and mist the cuttings daily. Wait for the cuttings to root, which can take from 2 to 8 weeks. You will see new growth on the cuttings. Transplant them to larger pots or directly to the ground when they are well-rooted and established.
  • Division: Dig up a clump of your eucalyptus tree with a shovel or a fork. 
RequirementDescription
cold or wet conditions. If you live in a cold or humid area, you might want to choose a hardy or dwarf variety that can withstand low temperatures or high humidity.
SoilEucalyptus likes well-drained and slightly acidic soil with a pH of 5.5 to 6.5. It can grow in poor and sandy soils, but not in heavy clay or waterlogged soils. You can improve the drainage and acidity of your soil by adding some perlite or vermiculite and some peat moss or coco coir.
SunEucalyptus needs full sun exposure for at least 6 hours a day. It can tolerate partial shade, but not deep shade. You need to choose a sunny and open location for your eucalyptus tree, and avoid any obstructions or competition from other plants.
WaterEucalyptus needs moderate watering, especially during the first year of growth. The soil should be moist but not soggy. You can check the soil moisture by inserting your finger into it. If it feels dry, water your tree. If it feels wet, wait until it dries out a bit before watering again. You can also use a moisture meter to measure the soil moisture level.
SpaceEucalyptus can grow very fast and tall, reaching up to 200 feet in height and 10 feet in diameter. It needs ample space to spread its roots and branches, and should not be planted near buildings, power lines, or other plants. You need to allow at least 10 feet of space between your eucalyptus tree and any other structure or plant.

How to Grow Eucalyptus from Seed: The Benefits

how to grow eucalyptus from seed

Growing eucalyptus from seed has many benefits, not only for you but also for your environment and your health. Here are some of the benefits of growing eucalyptus from seed:

Beauty

Eucalyptus has attractive foliage that comes in various shapes, sizes, and colors. It also produces fragrant flowers that attract bees, butterflies, and birds. Growing eucalyptus from seed can add beauty and diversity to your garden, as well as provide food and shelter for wildlife.

Aroma

Eucalyptus has a refreshing and invigorating scent that can purify the air, repel insects, and soothe the senses. Growing eucalyptus from seed can fill your garden with a pleasant aroma that can enhance your mood and well-being.

Medicine

Eucalyptus has many medicinal properties that can treat various ailments, such as coughs, colds, asthma, sinusitis, arthritis, wounds, infections, and more. Growing eucalyptus from seed can provide you with a natural and effective remedy that can boost your immune system and heal your body.

Crafts

Eucalyptus leaves can be used for various crafts, such as wreaths, bouquets, garlands, candles, soap, and more. Growing eucalyptus from seed can give you a source of material that can unleash your creativity and make your home more cozy and inviting.

Conclusion

Growing eucalyptus from seed is easy, rewarding, and fun if you follow these simple steps and tips. You can grow your own eucalyptus tree from seed and enjoy its beauty and aroma in your garden.

Eucalyptus has many benefits, such as purifying the air, repelling insects, treating various ailments, and making various crafts. You can use eucalyptus leaves for various purposes and enjoy their scent and sight.

If you want to grow your own eucalyptus tree from seed, why not start today? All you need are some fresh and high-quality seeds, some soil and containers, some water and sun, and some patience and attention.

You will be amazed by how fast and tall your eucalyptus tree will grow from seed. You will also be delighted by how much joy and satisfaction it will bring you.

We hope this article has helped you learn how to grow eucalyptus from seed. If you have any questions or feedback, please let us know in the comments below.

Happy gardening! 

About The Author

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Samantha
Samantha

I'm Samantha, a plant enthusiast who has been growing plants for years. I believe that plants can make our lives better, both physically and mentally. I started growit.wiki to share my knowledge about how to grow plants. I want to help others enjoy the beauty and benefits of plants.

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