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Inter-species comparison of seed dormancy and germination of six annual Asteraceae weeds in an ecological context

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 March 2008

Laila M. Karlsson
Affiliation:
IFM Division of Ecology, Linköping University, SE-581 83 Linköping, Sweden
T. Tamado
Affiliation:
Department of Plant Science, Haramaya University, Dire Dawa, and Woalita Sodo University, PO Box 138, Ethiopia
Per Milberg
Affiliation:
IFM Division of Ecology, Linköping University, SE-581 83 Linköping, Sweden
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

To understand germination timing in an ecological context, the response to environmental events that affect seed dormancy is central, and has to be combined with knowledge of germination responses to different circumstances. In this study, seed dormancy, germination and emergence phenology of six annual co-occurring weedy Asteraceae species were investigated. Three pre-treatments (warm and cold stratification, and dry storage) were tested as possible dormancy-affecting environmental events. Seeds were also sown outdoors. Species-specific differences were revealed in analyses. To facilitate general descriptions of dormancy patterns and germination preferences separately, condensed responses to the different possible dormancy-affecting treatments and relative germination in different environments were plotted, giving species-specific patterns. Most species exhibited decreased dormancy to two or three pre-treatments. Dormancy was most effectively reduced by cold stratification for three species (Guizotia scabra, Parthenium hysterophorus, Verbesina encelioides), by warm stratification for two (Bidens pilosa, Galinsoga parviflora) and by dry storage for one (Tagetes minuta). All species germinated more when provided with light than in continuous darkness. Temperature levels most suitable for germination varied from low (15/5–20/10°C) for V. encelioides to high (25/15–30/20°C) for B. pilosa. It is concluded that, even though the species have different dormancy patterns and germination preferences that suggest different possible distribution ranges, they achieve similar emergence timing in the field in environments with a pronounced dry period after dispersal and small annual temperature fluctuations.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2008

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Inter-species comparison of seed dormancy and germination of six annual Asteraceae weeds in an ecological context
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