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  • Author or Editor: Louisa Vang x
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The morphological, physiological, and biochemical changes during seed development of Lesquerella fendleri were investigated from 7 days after pollination (DAP) to desiccation. The entire course of seed development lasted ≈49 days and it can be divided into seven sequential stages (I to VII). During the early stages (I to III, 7 to 21 DAP), seed grew rapidly, showing a dramatic increase in size and fresh weight. They contained ≈75% water. During midmaturation stages (IV to V, 28 to 35 DAP), storage lipids, proteins, and other components of dry weights accumulated at maximum rates. The accumulation curves followed a sigmoidal pattern during seed development. As a result of water loss, fresh weight dropped significantly when seed progressed to late-maturation/desiccation stages (VI to VII, 42 to 49 DAP). The size of the seed decreased slightly and the color changed from green to orange–brown. Seed proteins were also analyzed using SDS-PAGE. Proteins with high molecular weights were prominent in developing seed at early stages (I to III). At Stage IV (28 DAP), proteins with low molecular weight appeared, whereas the high-molecular-weight proteins decreased in proportion. These low-molecular-weight proteins became predominant throughout the remaining stages of seed development. Forty-seven percent of freshly harvested seed at 35 DAP were able to germinate after 7 days incubation. The germination percentage increased to a maximum of 95% at 42 DAP after 7 days incubation. The relationships among seed morphology, reserve synthesis, and germination are discussed.

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