Stratification, Scarification and Application of Phytohormones Promote Dormancy Breaking and Germination of Pelleted Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) Seeds

Katarzyna Nawrot-Chorabik* (Corresponding Author), Małgorzata Osmenda, Krzysztof Słowiński, Dariusz Latowski, Sylwester Tabor, Stephen Woodward

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
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Seed quality is an important issue in forestry as it is an essential parameter in the production of high quality planting material. Many factors may hinder the harvesting of high quality seeds, including an insufficient number of sunny days, external conditions in temperate climate zones, and fungal pathogens affecting development of seedlings. We undertook to develop a procedure maximizing seed protection and promoting the optimum physiological development of seedlings by examination of the impact of seed pelleting (a general seed protection method) on germination rates and seedling development of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.). Germination of pelleted seeds was examined in relation to substrate (water vs. soil) and LED light spectrum (white vs. red-blue). Several dormancy breaking treatments were applied: stratification/scarification, and growth regulator treatments including gibberellic acid (GA3), indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) and 1-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA), to stimulate seed germination. Experiments included independent tests for each treatment (stratification/scarification and plant growth regulators), and combinations of both stratification/scarification and phytohormone treatments. The impacts of these treatments and various controlled germination conditions on the fluorescence of chlorophyll were analyzed using the maximum efficiency of photosystem II photochemistry parameter (Fv/Fm). In addition, chlorophyll a and b content in Scots pine seedlings germinated from pelleted seeds, were quantified using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The combined stratification/scarification and growth regulator treatment was the most effective germination promoting method for pelleted Scots pine seeds. Scots pine seeds are highly likely to be photoblastic. The best germination rate, while maintaining optimal physiological parameters, was achieved in acidic soil (pH 5.0) with white LED light.
Original languageEnglish
Article number621
Number of pages14
Issue number5
Early online date14 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2021


  • germination
  • LED light
  • photoblastic seeds
  • phytochromes
  • seed pelleting


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