Effects of drought stresses induced by polyethylene glycol on germination of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica seeds from natural and plantation forests on sandy land

Authors: Zhu, Jiaojun; Kang, Hongzhang; Tan, Hui; Xu, Meiling

Source: Journal of Forest Research, Volume 11, Number 5, October 2006 , pp. 319-328(10)

Publisher: Springer

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Effects of drought stresses induced by polyethylene glycol (PEG) (0.0%, 10%, 15%, 20%, 25%, and 30%, with four replicates) on germination of Mongolian pine (Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica) seeds produced in plantations (southern Keerqin sandy land) and natural forests (Hulunbeier sandy plain) were observed. The results indicated that the seeds from both provenances did not germinate when PEG concentration was more than 25%. The time of initial germination and that of its completion of stressed seeds from both provenances were delayed when compared with the unstressed seeds. The germination capacity and germination rate of natural seeds were significantly higher than those of plantation seeds for all treatment levels (P < 0.05). The mean growth rates of radicle and hypocotyl from natural seeds were significantly higher than those from plantation seeds at all treatment levels below 20% PEG treatment (P < 0.05). The ratios of radicle to hypocotyl of 20% PEG treatment were significant higher than those of the corresponding controls for both provenances (P < 0.05). These results suggested that Mongolian pine seeds/seedlings had stronger resistance to PEG drought stresses; 10% PGE stress did not significantly influence germination. Natural seeds exhibited more resistance to PEG stress than plantation seeds. It was concluded that drought stress on seed germination might be one cause of obstructed natural regeneration of Mongolian pine plantations on sandy land. It is recommended that natural seeds be used for afforestation, and light drought stress (e.g., 10% PEG stress) may be useful in improving seed germination and the growth of radicles and hypocotyls.

Keywords: Germination; Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica seed; Provenance; Sandy land; Water stress

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10310-006-0214-y

Affiliations: Email: jiaojunzhu@iae.ac.cn

Publication date: October 1, 2006

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