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The effect of controlled hydration treatment on germination and seedling emergence of unaged and aged pepper seeds during development

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Pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) seeds were harvested 50, 60, 70, and 80 days after anthesis (daa) and 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75, and 80 daa in 2000 and 2001, respectively. After drying, a proportion of each sample was aged at 20% moisture content, 45 °C for 24 h. Both unaged (UA) and aged (A) seeds were hydrated in aerated water at 25 °C for 48 h (controlled hydration, CH). Seed quality was then assessed by counting germination after 3 days, normal germination percentage after 14 days, seedling emergence, and fresh and dry weight. Maximum seed quality of unaged seeds occurred 70 daa in 2000, and between 65 and 75 daa in 2001. CH treatment improved seed quality in both unaged (UA) and aged (A) seed lots. The maximum benefit was observed in seed lots harvested 60 and 70 daa in 2000, and 65, 70, and 75 daa in 2001. There was less improvement in the less mature (50-55 daa) and overmatured (80 daa) seed samples. It was concluded that CH treatment could be used to improve seed quality in seed lots harvested in once-over mechanical practices that contain immature and overmature seed proportions together.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Ankara


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