Seeding native plant seeds is easy and can be done in many different ways, from direct sowing outdoors to sowing indoors in trays. This method is a hybrid of both, and by far my favourite.
I sow the seeds into a clean potting soil (mine is a mixture of peat, vermiculite and perlite) in the fall. Typically, after the first hard frost and before the first major snowfall. Although how late you sow the seeds does not matter, as much as long as there is enough time for the seeds to go through their cold moist stratification requirements. For example, some seeds require 30 days of winter weather, whereas others may need 60 or more. After the seed tray is done I place it outside. Ideally, where it will receive plenty of snow and a consistent temperature. For example, avoid placing it against the south side of your house, especially if you have vinyl siding that could reflect heat onto the tray. If possible, you can place and tight gauge of wire mesh over top to prevent rodents from foraging on the seeds. Once spring has sprung place the tray somewhere where it will get a good amount of sun, but avoid letting the tray dry out. I always like to let gardeners that are new to seeding native plants know that some species can take a few years to flower, so patience is indeed needed. I love learning from other gardeners so please comment and share your methods of growing from seed.