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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 78 No. 1, p. 206-210
    Received: May 20, 1985

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Emergence of Several Grasses from Pregerminated Seed and Some Soil Water Effects1

  1. Victor L. Hauser2



Grasses are difficult to establish on range or pasture land in the Southern Plains. Previous research showed that germinating the seeds of two grass species before planting (pregermination) substantially improved plant establishment. Twelve grass species adapted to the Southern Plains were evaluated to learn their response to pregermination treatment. The seeds were germinated in aerated water held at constant temperature, then suspended in gel. They were planted in soil bins in the greenhouse and covered by 1.3 cm of soil (fine, mixed, thermic, Udertic Paleustalfs). Kleingrass (Panicum coloratum L.) was included in each of the eight experiments, and it produced best plant stands when soil water at the seed depth was near or above field capacity. Pregermination doubled the number of plants established by kleingrass and buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris L.). Weeping lovegrass [Eragrostis curvula (Schrad.) Nees], and buffalograss [Buchloe dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.] produced 40% more plants from pregerminated seeds than from untreated seeds. Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) and blue panicum (Panicum antidotale Retz.) responded favorably to pregermination treatment in one test but not in the other. Six other grass species produced the same number of plants from either pregerminated seeds or untreated seeds. Grass species should be individually tested to determine their response to pregermination.

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