Seed germination ecophysiology of the woodland spring geophyte Erythronium albidum.

J. M. Baskin, C. C. Baskin

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24 Scopus citations


Erythronium albidum is a spring ephemeral geophyte that grows in mesic deciduous forests of E North America. Flowering and seed production occur in early spring, and dormant seeds are dispersed in late May. Seeds sown on soil in a nonheated greenhouse in May germinated the following late winter and early spring when mean daily maximum and minimum temperatures were c10-20 and 1-7oC, respectively. Embryos are underdeveloped and physiologically dormant when the seeds are dispersed. In seeds kept outdoors on moist soil under leaf litter, embryos grew from early September through late January, with most of the growth occurring in October and November. At least 4 wk warm plus 8 wk cold stratification were necessary before seeds germinated to near 100%. In the woodland habitat, seeds are warm stratified during summer, and embryos grow when seeds are subjected to low temperatures during autumn and winter. Consequently, embryos are fully elongated by late January. Germination occurs as soon as temperatures become nonlimiting in late winter and early spring. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-136
Number of pages7
JournalBotanical Gazette
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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