Effect of soil moisture during stratification on dormancy release in seeds of five common weed species

X. W. Hu, X. Y. Ding, C. C. Baskin, Y. R. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Although the effects of cold stratification on the release of physiological dormancy in seeds have been studied extensively, knowledge of the role of soil moisture content on seed dormancy release during cold stratification is limited. Our study determined seed dormancy characteristics and the effect of soil moisture content on seed dormancy breakage during cold stratification in the five common weed species Amaranthus retroflexus, Chenopodium album, Chenopodium hybridum, Plantago lanceolata and Setaria glauca. Seeds of all five species were dormant at the time of harvest and their germination response to light and temperature varied. Soil moisture content had a significant effect on seed dormancy release of all species except P. lanceolata. Germination percentage of A. retroflexus, C. album, C. hybridum increased and then decreased as soil moisture content increased, regardless of germination test temperature. The optimal soil moisture content and seed moisture content for dormancy breakage of A. retroflexus, C. album, C. hybridum were 8%, 12%, 8% and 22.0%, 37.7%, 25.7% respectively. Dry storage (after-ripening) significantly increased germination of S. glauca. Moreover, increasing soil moisture content first slowed and then increased dormancy breakage in S. glauca. These results suggest that data on soil moisture content should be incorporated into models that predict weed seed dormancy breakage and timing of seedling emergence as well as those for weed management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-220
Number of pages11
JournalWeed Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 European Weed Research Society


  • buried weed seeds
  • cold stratification
  • germination temperature
  • seed dormancy
  • seed moisture content

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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