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  • Author or Editor: Vivian K. Toole x
  • Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science x
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Abstract

The germination of Kentucky bluegrass, (Poa pratensis L.), seeds is profoundly influenced by two light reactions. One, the phytochrome reaction (P), is promotive, and the other, the so-called “high-energy reaction (HER)”, is inhibitory to germination. The level of germination displayed in 14 days as the resultant of these two opposing reactions is appreciably influenced by temperature.

In darkness, the seeds germinate well at certain temperature alternations but not at constant temperatures. At 15-25°C, the promotive effects of temperature alternation are accomplished in the first 5 to 6 cycles. The promotive effects of alternations are displayed in darkness when the daily period at 25° is between 4 and 14 hours.

Brief daily high-intensity fluorescent illuminances (approximately 4,000 ft-c) during otherwise continuous darkness at constant 20°C induce high germination in most lots. Continuous medium-to-high intensity illumination (approximately 1,200 ft-c) very weakly promotes germination and in potentially promoted seeds inhibits germination to about the level of the dark controls.

Inhibitory effects of continuous light on potentially promoted seeds are best displayed at 20°C constant although, in ‘Newport’ they are observable at 15-25°. The inhibition of ‘Newport’ at 15-25° is to a level below that of the dark controls but above that caused by prolonged illumination at 20°.

Thus conditions most promotive to germination are 15-25°C alternations and brief daily illuminances of high intensity. Simultaneous application of these 2 conditions causes higher germination than when either is applied alone and in one lot of ‘Newport’ the effects are strikingly additive.

Open Access