Effect of salt priming on germination and seedling growth at low temperatures in watermelon seeds during development

Title: Effect of salt priming on germination and seedling growth at low temperatures in watermelon seeds during development

Authors: I. Demir and C. Oztokat

Published in: Seed Science & Technology, volumn 31, pages 765-770, (2003).

Abstract: "The effect of salt priming (KNO3, 20

Priming is a great method to increase and make germination of some species more uniform. It seems to be more beneficial and commonly used with species that to not have physiological dormancy (long stratification requirement to change internal hormone levels) like roses do. It is commonly done with bedding plant annuals for commercial plug production. The effect of priming slips as one waits to plant after priming and drying the seed.

Most typical priming involved imbibing seeds in water or water with a salt like the one the authors used above. From my understanding getting water into the seed (the salt helps draw more water into the seed) helps the process of stored carbohydrate degredation. The imbibing signals gibberellic acid to be produced in the outer layer of some seeds and then that GA stimulates alpha amylase to be produced which breaks down the stored carbs so energy will be available for growth. By imbibing the seeds and then drying the seeds again (priming) before the radical emerges, it seems that for many species after one plants the seed again it will germinate at a higher rate and more uniformly. That is the case for impatiens, purple cone flowers, sunflowers…

It would be interesting if people would be willing to see if priming can help with rose seed germination. Perhaps pre-stratification would be a good time to do the priming treatment so the seeds would be more uniformly imbibed before given their cold treatment.



Hmmm, where would one get sources of the salt (KN03 (isn’t that the chemical that stains paper (and hands) brown?)), and where would one get detailed instructions on how to do the priming. I’ve read quite a bit on seed starting, etc., and this is the first I’ve ever heard of it.



Authors affiliation: INT POTATO CENT, PO BOX 5969, LIMA, PERU.

Published in: Hortscience, volumn 26, pages 296-299,(1991).

Abstract: " Sexual seeds of potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) usually emerge poorly under high-temperature conditions (> 25 C). A seedling vigor study was conducted during the warm season (1988-89) in Lima, Peru, and the results of two representative tests are reported. Two presowing treatments and a rinsed control were compared for seedling-stand establishment in a screenhouse with old (> 18 months) and new (> 6 months) sexual seeds of three potato crosses. The treatments consisted of soaking the seed in solutions of KNO3 + K3PO4 at -1.0 MPa (priming) and gibberellic acid at 1500 ppm [GA1500). Seedling vigor was lower at 34 C (February test) than at 29 C (November test). In both tests, overall seedling performance was highest in seed of the cross Atlantic .times. LT-7. Old seed was more vigorous than new seed, particularly when the crosses Atzimba .times. R128.6 (B2) and Serrana .times. LT-7 (C1) were tested at 34 C. Priming increased percentage of early (10 days) emergence over the other treatments at 34 C and increased seedling dry weight in both tests. GA1500 increased percentage of final (17 days) emergence in crosses B2 and C1, as compared to rinsing, except at 29 C, where there were no significant differences in old seed. For sowing true potato seed at high temperature, a) the genotype is a crucial factor, b) sufficient seed storage (> 18 months) may be essential, and c) seed priming is more effective than the standard GA1500 treatment."