Download Cultivation Manual Stevia Seed to Plant
Cultivating Stevia is not easy and takes a lot of patience. The stevia plant is a light-loving plant and likes a lot of water. You should take this into account when growing stevia.
Sowing the stevia plant
How can you best grow stevia? Use a good sowing substrate, no potting soil, garden soil or compost. This contains too much fertiliser which will burn the delicate roots; the seed will germinate, but after one or two weeks the plants will fall over.
A good sowing substrate is cactus substrate, coco peat or a mixture of peat, perlite or sand and clay. You can sow in anything, but remember that the temperature must not drop below 20 degrees and that the soil does not dry out too quickly (cover with transparent foil or glass, but it must also not become too stuffy, then algae growth or mould will develop and it will be over. A grow box with ventilation holes is fine. Another tip for growing stevia: place it above the radiator at the back of the fridge, where warm air always rises. Stevia seeds are light germinators i.e. the stevia seeds germinate at sufficient (400 Lux shade -1500 Lux half shade) and prolonged (14-16 hours) light. Every stevia plant has its strategy. The stevia seed that falls to the ground in October does nothing (less than 10 hours of light).
Germination of the stevia plant
Frequently the stevia seed germinates moderately, which makes growing stevia a difficult task. This is because the stevia plant is a self-fertilizer and these seeds have a germination rate of 10%. The cross-pollinated seeds have a germination capacity of 80%. Therefore sow thickly and cover very thinly. Sieve part of the substrate through a sieve with meshes of 1 to 2 millimetres. Sprinkle this fine powder as evenly as possible over the seeds. Moisten the whole with the spray gun. Nothing germinates where it is too thick. Better too thin than too thick. Then give it something over the water. When growing stevia, make sure that the soil doesn't dry out too much (it will colour very lightly and a white powder will form, salts etc.) but the soil shouldn't be too wet either.
After germination of the stevia plant
The first stevia cotyledons become visible after about 8 days (at 25°C) to 20 days (19°C), depending on the temperature. Now it is important to keep the temperature constant at 22 degrees, give enough light and water only at the bottom. This stage is the most vulnerable moment in the life of the plant. Water from above makes the cotyledons stick to the soil and die. The cotyledons now grow slowly from 1 mm to 3 mm in diameter. It can take one to three weeks before the first real leaves become visible. If everything goes too slow, increase the average temperature by a few degrees and the day length by 1 to 2 hours more light. Make sure that there is no white powder on the edges of the pot and no algae. If you have a greenhouse outside, snails and other scum can cause a lot of damage.
Read here further for the further development of the stevia plant.