J Plant Ecol ›› 2010, Vol. 3 ›› Issue (4): 269-277.doi: 10.1093/jpe/rtp035

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Role of endogenous hormones, glumes, endosperm and temperature on germination of Leymus chinensis (Poaceae) seeds during development

Hongyuan Ma1,2, Zhengwei Liang1,2,*, Haitao Wu1, Lihua Huang1,2 and Zhichun Wang1,2   

  1. 1 Northeast Institute of Geography and Agricultural Ecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130012, People's Republic of China; 2 Da'an Sodic Land Experiment Station of China, Da'an 131317, People's Republic of China
  • Received:2009-08-25 Accepted:2009-12-23 Online:2010-01-28 Published:2010-11-04
  • Contact: Ma, Hongyuan E-mail:liangzw@neigae.ac.cn

Abstract: Aims Leymus chinensis is an original dominant plant in the Songnen grassland, and it has great value for restoration of severely degraded land. However, seeds are dormant, and low germination percentage is a problem for restoring L.chinensis grassland. The mechanism of seed dormancy is not been well understood. The primary aims of the present study were to investigate the dormancy mechanism of L.chinensis seeds (caryopses) with reference to the role of embryo-covering layers, endogenous hormones and temperature.
Methods Changes in concentration of the endogenous hormones GA 3, indoleacetic acid (IAA), zeatin riboside (ZR) and abscisic acid (ABA) in L.chinensis seeds from anthesis to maturity were measured by the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay method. Germination at different stages of maturity were tested at 16/28°C, 5/28°C and 5/35°C for intact seeds with glumes (control), intact seeds with glumes removed (naked-whole seeds) and intact seeds with glumes and one-half of the endosperm removed (naked-half seeds).
Important findings Of the four endogenous hormones monitored, only the concentration of ZR differed significantly between the beginning and the end of seed development (increased); the GA 3 /ABA ratio also did not differ. Rank of germination percentage of control at the three temperature regimens was 5/28°C> 16/28°C> 5/35°C. Germination percentage of the naked-half seeds reached 100% under the three temperature regimens. We concluded that dormancy of L.chinensis seeds is not mainly controlled by endogenous hormones. Germination temperature, mechanical resistance of glumes and inhibition of endosperm are the main factors controlling dormancy and germination of L.chinensis seeds.

Key words: endogenous hormones, temperature, Leymus chinensis, anthesis, seed, germination

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