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The Relationship Between Seed Quality, Time of Radicle Emergence, and Plant Performance of Cotton under Competitive and Noncompetitive Situations

Dennis B. Reginelli, Charles C. Baskin


The plant performance of cotton as related to seed quality and time of radicle emergence was studied in competitive and non competitive plantings. Field tests were conducted at the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station (MAFES) Plant Science Research Center, Mississippi State, Mississippi on a Marietta fine sandy loam. The cultivar examined was Deltapine 20. Seed quality and time of radicle emergence were characteristics which were evaluated for their effects on plant growth and reproductive characteristics in field test. One seed lot was obtained by hand harvesting bolls at carpel cracking. Harvested bolls were then dried and ginned on a small saw gin. Seed from this source were separated into four density fractions and the highest density fraction was retained for this study and labeled as the high (H) lot. Three other seed lots were from commercial seed obtain from the Delta and Pine Land Co., Scott, Mississippi. One of these lots was considered medium quality (M) and one lot low quality (L1) based on germination test and evaluations by the Delta and Pine Land quality control laboratory. A fourth category of seed was prepared for this study by placing approximately 10 kg of seed from the medium quality lot in a closed desiccator at 30oC - 75% relative humidity for 120 days. This lot was considered low two (L2). Lots ranged from 78 to 100% germination and varied in time of radicle emergence when seed were germinated in wet roiled germination towels. Beginning 24 hours after planting, seeds were removed from the towels if radicles had ruptured the seed coat. This procedure was repeated at 32, 40, and 48 hours after planting. Seedlings for the non competitive field planting were planted in a 50:50 mixture of screened field soil and potting soil in paper cups located in the greenhouse. These were later transferred to the field when plants were in the 2 to 4 leaf stage. Seedlings in the competitive planting were transferred directly from the germination towel into the field and hand planted approximately 2.5 cm deep, 10 cm apart in a 12 M long plot.

Reprinted from Proceedings of the 1996 Beltwide Cotton Conferences pp. 1246 - 1247
©National Cotton Council, Memphis TN

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Document last modified Sunday, Dec 6 1998