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This article in CS

  1. Vol. 44 No. 2, p. 549-552
    Received: Dec 20, 2002

    * Corresponding author(s): lgibson@iastate.edu
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Enhancing Germination of Eastern Gamagrass Seed with Stratification and Gibberellic Acid

  1. Carla Rogis,
  2. Lance R. Gibson *,
  3. Allen D. Knapp and
  4. Robert Horton
  1. Dep. of Agronomy, Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA 50011


Eastern gamagrass (Tripsacum dactyloides, L.), a warm season, perennial grass with great potential for forage and conservation uses, has a high level of seed dormancy, making establishment difficult. Stratification at 4°C for 6 wk is a standard method for providing germinable gamagrass seed. Earlier research showed that gibberellic acid (GA3) increased germinability of gamagrass caryopses removed from the cupule, but was less effective when the caryopses remained in the cupule. We hypothesized that gibberellic acid together with stratification may increase germination of seed above levels obtained by stratification or gibberellic acid alone. This study assessed the germination of three seed lots of eastern gamagrass to 1 mM GA3 and exposure to 4°C for 0 to 7 wk. Seed soaked in GA3 solution averaged 43% germination during the first 3 wk of stratification and was significantly higher than the germination of water soaked seed averaging 35% germination. Seed reached peak germinability after 4 wk of stratification and remained at this level during the final weeks. After 4 wk of stratification, germination levels of GA3 and water treated seed were similar at 64 to 70%. The most pronounced effect of GA3 was more rapid germination of seed in all of the stratification durations tested.

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