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  • Author or Editor: Gokhan Hacisalihoglu x
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Many warm-season turfgrass seeds have relatively poor germination percentages. Matriconditioning is a seed enhancement technique with a solid carrier and may be a practical solution to improve the germination characteristics of warm-season turfgrass. The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of matriconditioning on three nonaged and aged turfgrass cultivars: ‘Pensacola’ bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum), ‘Princess’ bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon), and ‘Common’ centipedegrass (Eremochloa ophiuroides). Seeds were matriconditioned with a synthetic calcium silicate (MicroCel E) as a carrier and water at 30 °C for 5 days. Seed, carrier, and water ratio was 1 g, 0.5 g, and 1.5 mL, respectively. Matriconditioning increased final germination to 55% (bahiagrass), 90% (bermudagrass), and 70% (centipedegrass) compared with 92% in nontreated control seeds. Furthermore, matriconditioning decreased mean germination time 20% to 65% in all seeds compared with the nontreated control. Accelerated aging was induced by storing seeds for 0, 7, and 14 days at 42 °C and 95% relative humidity. Germination percentage decreased and mean germination time increased with the aging, especially after 14 days of aging treatment. These results suggest that matriconditioning is an effective technique to improve turfgrass seed performance.

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The effects of chemical or physical factors during pregermination imbibition phase, or on dry seeds, on embryo growth potential (EGP) was studied in lettuce (Grand Rapids and Mesa 659) and tomato (H-9889) seeds in relation to dormancy, invigoration, and vigor loss. Embryos were excised from treated seeds (washed if imbibed in chemical solutions) and their growth rate (a measure of EGP) followed at 25°C at high magnification (X55). Treated seeds were also germinated at 25°C. In lettuce seeds, dormancy inducing treatments, i.e., a 2-day dark soak at 25°C with 50–100 μM tetcyclacis (TCY) or a 2-day dark soak in water at 35°C, reduced the subsequent embryo growth and germination rate at 25°C. The reduction was prevented by 1 mM GA4+7 or irradiation applied during dormancy induction. A -d osmoconditioning (OC) at 15C with -1.2 MPa PEG-8000 solution in light or in dark with added GA4+7 enhanced the EGP; addition of TCY reduced the EGP and the TCY inhibition reversed by GA4+7. A progressive reduction in EGP occurred with increase in vigor loss. In tomato seeds, a soak with 100 μM TCY in light or dark for 2 days at 30°C induced a dormancy, but had little effect on EGP. Application of GA4+7 plus TCY prevented dormancy induction without affecting EGP. A 4-day matriconditioning (MC) at 25°C in light or dark with moist Micro-Cel E enhanced the EGP; TCY and/or GA added during MC, had little effect on EGP. EGP progressively decreased as the aging period increased. Thus, in lettuce, the EGP is coupled with the reversible –GA/+GA or phytochrome-controlled dormancy induction/release process, enabling germination, its inhibition, or its enhancement. In tomato, the EGP is not subject to light or GA control. Reduction in EGP, accompanying vigor loss in both seeds, is independent of light or GA action.

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