Effects of Hydro-Priming and Potassium Nitrate Priming on the Germination of Balanites aegyptiaca

D O Adelani

Abstract



To meet the current demand of forest products through domestication, there is need to embrace cheap, fast and adoptable modern physiological techniques as priming that increase the seed germination percentages, reduce mean germination time and increase seedling growth of agro-forestry tree species. There is dearth of quantified information on the effect of hydro and potassium nitrate priming on the seeds of agro-forestry tree species compared to arable crops. Most of methods of breaking seed dormancy do not promote rapid and uniform germination as priming. In this regards, these experiments were conducted to assess the effect of hydro-priming hours (0, 6, 8, 12 and 14hours) on the germination of B. aegyptiaca seeds; to investigate the effect concentrations of potassium nitrate (0.2, 0.3, 0.4 and 0.5 ppm) and treatment times (0, 12, 24, 36 and 72hours) and to calculate the mean germination time of each experiment. Hydro-priming experiment was laid down in completely randomised design with four (4) replicates.A split-plot experimental design with four (4) replicates was employed for potassium nitrate experiment. Concentrations of potassium nitrate and treatment times constituted main and sub-plot treatments respectively.Results revealed that a significant increase in percentage germination was recorded with the increasing number of hours the seeds were subjected to hydro-priming. The percentage germination was ranged from 18.75% to 57.50% for the control (0) and 14hours hydro-priming. A significant decrease in percentage germination was recorded with the increasing number of concentration of potassium nitrate treatments on seeds. The percentage germination was ranged from 0.10% to 30.07% for 0.5 ppm to 0.2 ppm treatments. Germination percentage of seeds treated in 0.2 ppm concentration of potassium nitrate significantly decreased with the increasing treatment time. Germination percentage was ranged from 10% to 59.83% for the 0hour (control) and 12hours. Mean germination time ranged from 19.25 days to 23.62 days for all concentrations of potassium nitrate and treatment times. The least mean germination time that ranged from 19.25 days to 23.37days was recorded for seeds treated in 0.4 ppm of potassium nitrate for overall treatment time. Highest germination percentage of 30.07% was recorded for seeds soaked in 0.2 ppm of potassium nitrate and was recommended for mass production of its seedling for agro-forestry programmes.

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