Salvia splendens Seed Pregermination and Priming for Rapid and Uniform Plant Emergence

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
Author:
William J. CarpenterDepartment of Ornamental Horticulture, IFAS, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611

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Abstract

Salvia (Salvia spendens, F. Sellow ex Roem & Schult.) seeds imbibed in distilled water at 6C for 6 days germinated earlier and with fewer days to 50% of total germination (T50) than non-imbibed seeds. Drying imbibed seeds for 1 to 5 days at 5C and 45% RH before sowing signficiantly reduced seed viability. Priming seeds in a hypertonic osmotic solution of aerated polyethylene glycol 8000 (PEG) at —0.8 MPa for 10 days at 15C improved germination of the three cultivars tested. In laboratory and plant growth chamber trials, seeds primed with PEG 8000 and nonprimed seeds had similar total germination at 20 and 25C, but primed seeds had significantly higher germination at 10, 15, and 30C. At 35C, PEG-primed seeds had 44% to 65% germination, while nonprimed seeds failed to germinate. Alternating 10 and 20C or 20 and 30C diurnally at 12-hr cycles did not increase total germination regardless of seed treatment. Seeds primed with PEG had lower T50 than nonprimed seeds at 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30C, with the largest difference at the most unfavorable temperatures for germination. Primed seeds stored at 5C for 1 to 16 weeks reduced total germination and the potential capacity for rapid germination.

Contributor Notes

Received for publication 9 May 1988. Florida Agriculture Experiment Station Journal Series no. 8949. This research was partially supported by a grant from the Bedding Plants Foundation, Inc. The cost of publishing this paper was defrayed in part by the payment of page charges. Under postal regulations, this paper therefore must be hereby marked advertisement solely to indicate this fact.

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