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Regulation of water absorption by Ca2+ osmolarity alleviates cotyledonal cracking in green beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.)

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Cotyledonal cracking in green beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) reduces stand establishment and final yield. Regulation of water absorption during imbibition was examined for its possible role in the alleviation of cotyledonal cracking in white green bean cultivars. Calcium was supplied by osmopriming using CaCl2, Ca(NO3)2 and CaSO4. Green bean seeds of uniform moisture content (12% fresh mass basis) were imbibed in different calcium concentrations (0, 1, 10, 50, 100 and 1000 mM). Seed water potential, water absorption rate and cotyledonal cracking were decreased in a positive correlation with increasing calcium osmolarity. Concentrations greater than 50 mM reduced seed germination. There was a relationship between green bean seed size and cotyledonal cracking. Cotyledonal cracking was caused by an inrush of water into the seed. Hence, it is concluded that calcium osmolarity alleviates cotyledonal cracking by reducing the rate of water absorption. The findings of this study will be important in understanding the direct physiological effect of calcium in enhancing cell wall integrity of green bean seeds prone to cotyledonal cracking and in the improvement of green bean stand establishment.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2005

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  • Seed Science and Technology (SST) is one of the leading international journals featuring original papers and review articles on seed quality and physiology as related to seed production, harvest, processing, sampling, storage, distribution and testing. This widely recognised journal is designed to meet the needs of researchers, advisers and all those involved in the improvement and technical control of seed quality.
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