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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Roh, Mark
item Bentz, Jo Ann

Submitted to: Acta Horticulture Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/1/2003
Publication Date: 12/12/2003
Citation: Roh, M.S., Bentz, J. Germination of Styrax Japonicus Seeds as Influenced by Storage and Sowing Condition. Acta. Hort. 2003. v:630, pp:411-416.

Interpretive Summary: According to the literature, Styrax seeds needed to be stored for 3 to 5 months at moist and warm (70 degree F) environments and then stored at low temperature (40 degree F) for 3 or 4 months. Also, seeds that are sown immediately after collection may germinate by the following spring, suggesting that non-fresh seeds may take longer to germinate. The results of these experiments revealed that germination of fresh or dried seed did not differ when seeds received warm moist treatment for 1 month followed by 2 to 3 months of cold treatment. Seeds germinate in 1 month and germination was significantly improved. Dried seeds that received for 3 or 4 months of warm and moist treatment had a lower germination percentage than fresh seeds. It is recommended that Styrax seeds receive 1 month of warm and moist treatment followed by 2 months of cold treatment to improve germination percentage and to induce a rapid germination.

Technical Abstract: This study evaluated the effect of storage and sowing conditions on seed germination of Styrax japonicus Sieb. et. Zucc, an ornamental tree with seeds that exhibit double dormancy. The germination of freshly harvested seeds was compared with seeds that had been stored dry at 20C for a year before sowing. After sowing, potted seeds were placed in an air-refrigerated greenhouse maintained 18.5/18C. Pots were kept for 0, 1, 2, 3, or 4 months in the greenhouse for warm stratification (WS), and then moved to a 5.5C cooler for 3 months for cold stratification (CS). After CS, pots were moved back to the greenhouse. None of the fresh or dried seeds that received CS immediately after sowing germinated. Germination of fresh and dried seeds did not differ when the seeds received WS for at least 1 month. Dry seeds, that received 3 or 4 months of WS, had a lower germination percentage than fresh seeds. The effect of moisture after sowing on the germination of freshly harvested seeds was determined by either watering or not watering the seeds before they were placed in the cooler. In addition seeds under the moist treatment were watered as needed to keep the medium moist. More than 60% of the seeds that received CS for at least for 1 month germinated. A radicle did not emerge through the seed coat after warm stratification, or at the completion of cold stratification. It is recommended that Styrax seeds receive 1 month of WS, followed by 2 months of CS.

Last Modified: 10/18/2017
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