Optimum ratios of zeolite seed Drying Beads® to dry rice seeds for genebank storage
A series of experiments were carried out to determine the quantity of zeolite seed Drying Beads® required to dry fresh- and partially-dried rice seeds to the low moisture contents used for genebank storage (6-7% fresh weight). Placing beads over water followed by passive drying at 15% RH, 15°C provided an estimate of the amount of water that would be taken up to strong water-binding sites in the beads, as confirmed by the water uptake isotherms. This may be a more appropriate indicator of the capacity of the beads for water, although not necessarily the amount of water that the beads will actually adsorb from the seeds in a bead-seed system. Mixing freshly harvested rice seeds with dry beads (capacity of approximately 16%) at a ratio of 1 (bead weight to seed weight), should reduce their moisture content to acceptable levels for long-term genebank storage. Pre-drying seeds, while not necessary, will reduce the quantity of beads required. At higher bead-to-seed ratios, final seed moisture content is reduced further, although the beads become less effective as the proportion of water in the seeds that is held in strong-water-binding sites increases.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 2013
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