Seed Germination Variation among Crop Years from a Pinus sylvestris Clonal Seed Orchard

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Melusi Rampart

Abstract

Maternal effects were assessed by germinating seeds sourced over multiple years from the same cloned mother trees, comparing germination capacity and rate between crop years. The relationships between climatic variables, seed characteristics and germination capacity were determined, and thermal time parameters were used to predict seed dormancy release and germination under the climatic conditions in the year after seed collection. There were significant differences in seed weight (P < 0.05), seed length and embryo occupancy (both P < 0.001) among crop years. Temperature during the seed development period explained 70% of the variation in seed weight and 63% of the variation in embryo occupancy. Germination capacity was significantly (P <0.001) different among crop years, among temperatures and among chilling durations, and thermal time requirements for germination increased from older (2007) to younger (2012) seeds. The mean base temperature without chilling was 7.1°C, while after chilling it was 4.6°C and 3.6°C for four and eight weeks chilling respectively. The mean thermal time to 50% germination without chilling was 135.1°Cd, while after chilling it was 118.3°Cd and 154.0°Cd for four and eight weeks chilling respectively. This experiment demonstrates that year-to-year differences in the environment experienced by mother trees during seed maturation can affect seed germination characteristics.

Keywords:
Seed germination, Pinus sylvestris, thermal time, chilling units, dormancy

Article Details

How to Cite
Rampart, M. (2019). Seed Germination Variation among Crop Years from a Pinus sylvestris Clonal Seed Orchard. Asian Journal of Research in Agriculture and Forestry, 3(1), 1-14. https://doi.org/10.9734/ajraf/2019/v3i130031
Section
Original Research Article