Improvement of seed germination through various seed priming treatments under rainfed conditions

Salman Gulzar Khan, Mahmmod Burrio


Poor crop establishment was identified as a major constraint on rainfed crop production by farmers and on-farm seed priming with water

was chosen as a low cost, low risk intervention appropriate to the farmers' needs. Micronutrient seed treatments, which include seed

priming and seed coating, are an attractive and easy alternative. Here in this review, we discuss the potential of micronutrient seed

treatments for improving crop growth and grain nutrient enrichment and their application through seed treatments improves the stand

establishment, advances phenological events, and increases yield and micronutrient grain contents in most cases. Direct benefits in all

three crops included faster emergence, better stands and a lower incidence of re-sowing, more vigorous plants, better drought tolerance,

earlier flowering, earlier harvest and higher grain yield and Indirect benefits reported were earlier sowing of crops because of the shorter

duration of the preceding crop, earlier harvesting of crops that allowed earlier migration from the area. Seed priming can markedly

increase the germination rate of seed, but has not always been accompanied by improvements in field emergence rates or percentages and

optimal priming conditions may vary among cultivars and even seed lots of a given species. Although seed lots differed in the magnitude

of their response to a standard priming treatment, all lots exhibited markedly improved rates of germination and emergence after priming

and in most cases, micronutrient application through seed treatment performed better or similar to other application methods. Being an

easy and cost effective method of micronutrient application, seed treatments offer an attractive option for resource-poor farmers.

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