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Crop Science Abstract -

Effect of Environment During Seed Production on Seedling Vigor of Two Alfalfa Varieties1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 10 No. 6, p. 635-638
    Received: Apr 8, 1970

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  1. L. E. Walter and
  2. E. H. Jensen2



Effect of two air temperatures (hot = 16 to 32C, x̄ = 24C; cool = 6 to 21C, x̄ = 13C) and three soil moisture regimes (wet = 1/6 to 1/3 bar tension, moderate = 1/3 to 1 bar tension, dry = 1 to 10 bars tension) on ‘Moapa’ and ‘Ranger’ alfalfa (Medicago saliva L.) seed production and seedling vigor was studied under controlled environmental conditions. Moapa produced more and heavier seed and had a lower percentage of hard seed than Ranger. When seeds were scarified and grown for 22 days under similar conditions, regardless of seed density, Moapa seedlings emerged faster and were larger than Ranger, but Ranger seedlings developed leaves faster than Moapa.

Seeds produced under cool temperatures were heavier and had a higher percentage of hard seed than those produced under hot temperatures. Seed produced under cool temperatures produced larger seedlings of Ranger, but temperature during seed production had little effect on vigor of subsequent Moapa seedlings.

Seedling vigor of Ranger seed produced under cool conditions increased with decreasing soil moisture. Soil moisture had little effect on vigor of Moapa seedlings produced under hot or cool temperatures. Seedling vigor was increased with heavier seed density.

Air temperature and soil moisture regimes during seed production not only affected seed yield, size, and germination but also influenced vigor of subsequent seedlings.

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