The effects of the dry-back temperature on sh2 sweet corn seeds primed via solid matrix priming combined with sodium hypochlorite (SMPsh) were studied. Seeds of two sh2 sweet corn cultivars: Crisp N'Sweet 711 (CNS-711) and How Sweet It Is (HSII) were primed via SMPsh. After the treatment, the seeds were dried-back from 50-54% to 6-7% moisture content at 20, 30 or 40C and 25% RH. The rate of dehydration was significantly lower in CNS-711 compared to HSII at all dry-back temperatures. In both cultivars, seed respiration after 4, 16, and 32h of imbibition was greater in those dried at 30 and 40C compared to 20C or non-primed seed. Enzyme activity (glutamic acid decarboxylase activity) was decreased in HSII seeds dried at 20C. There were no differences among treatments in CNS-711. Leakage conductivity was significantly less when the seeds were dried-back at 30C or 40C compared to 20C or nonprimed seeds. Laboratory germination and seedling fresh weight were greater in seeds dried-back at 30C compared the others temperatures or non-primed seeds. The low rate of desiccation at 20C (30h and 8h in CNS-711 and HSII, respectively) may not suppress germination events after priming, thus damaging the embryo during dry-back. This work demonstrated the importance of dry-back temperature to the efficacy of SMPsh seed treatment in sh2 corn.
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