Although it seems counterintuitive, many native species have seed that germinates in the fall. Seeds respond to fall rain or dew set that moistens the soil and triggers fall germination. This strategy enables these species to overwinter as a small rosette of leaves, ready to bolt and flower as soon as the weather warms in the spring. These cool season species get a jump start on growth in the fall in order to be more established before blooming.
In order to help these species achieve fall germination the seeds must be sown outside around the time of the first fall rain. The warm fall soil temperatures and rain trigger seed germination. For some species it is important to have them sown before the first significant fall rain comes, as this enables the seed to have enough moisture to germinate before the temperatures turn really cold.
Klamath-Siskiyou Native Seeds offers seed for the following annual species of wildflowers with seed that can germinate in the fall.
Clarkia rhomboidea-Diamond clarkia
Gilia capitata-Bluehead gilia
Plectritis congesta-Shortspur sea blush