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Germination Ecophysiology of Herbaceous Plant Species in a Temperate Region

Carol C. Baskin and Jerry M. Baskin
American Journal of Botany
Vol. 75, No. 2 (Feb., 1988), pp. 286-305
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2443896
Page Count: 20
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Germination Ecophysiology of Herbaceous Plant Species in a Temperate Region
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Abstract

Germination phenology data have been collected from 75 winter annuals, 49 summer annuals, 28 monocarpic perennials, and 122 polycarpic perennials, and experimental investigations of dormancy breaking and germination requirements have been conducted on 56 winter annuals, 32 summer annuals, 18 monocarpic perennials, and 73 polycarpic perennials. The purpose of these studies was to determine if there are correlations between the dormancy breaking and germination requirements of seeds and the germination phenology, life cycle type, habitat requirements, range of geographical distribution, and phylogenetic relationships of the species. Germination phenology is highly correlated with the responses of seeds to the yearly temperature cycle. Species with winter and summer annual life cycles have predictable germination characteristics, but monocarpic and polycarpic perennials do not. Several dormancy types may be found in a given habitat, and narrowly endemic and widely-distributed species in the same genus may have similar germination characteristics. Within some families there is a tendency for a particular type of seed-temperature response to be very important, but frequently this is related to the predominance of a given life cycle type in the family.

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