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Re: HYB: stratification

  • Subject: Re: HYB: stratification
  • From: Linda Mann <lmann@volfirst.net>
  • Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2001 13:32:56 -0400

Thanks Dennis.  Ok, 4 weeks I can manage and still get these guys to
live thru the winter I think.  I also got a helpful email offlist which
included the tip that they will start germinating inside the fridge,
which will be very helpful in figuring out when to take them out.  I am
in the process of moving them all from their soggy stocking toes into
damp potting mix filled 6 pack bedding plant pots in ziplok baggies.
Not sure they will all fit, but am going with the "beneficial effect of
crowding" hypothesis also.

I've got the USDA Yearbook of seeds here somewhere that also has a ton
of information on seed germination (inhibitors, mechanical vs chem
scarification etc etc).

Linda Mann east Tennessee USA zone 7/8

Dennis Hager in Delmarva - that's near New England I think<g>- wrote:
                 The most extensive study of iris seed germination using
"garden irises"
                 was reported by Randolph and Cox in the Proceedings of
the American
                 Society for Horticultural Science (V43, p 284-300,
                 "Low temperature storage for periods shorter than 2
weeks had no
                 appreciable effect on the final germination percentage
but storage at -2
                 degrees C, 4 degrees C for periods of 4 to 12 weeks did
have a
                 beneficial effect which was apparently independent of
the temperature
                 within the range. Wet storage combined with low
temperatures increased
                 the rate of germination as compared with dry storage,
but the final
                 percentage germination was the same."
                 If you're really interested in seed germination, you
should read "Seed
                 Dormancy and Germination" by JW Bradbeer. It's out of
print, but you
                 should be able to get it through interlibrary loan.
It's a concise
                 little book (146 pages), but it is crammed full of
information, NOT
                 about irises specifically, but about seeds in general.
By the time you
                 finish it, you will question most of the conventional
wisdom you have
                 heard about iris seed germination.
                 Another article of interest is "Germination Preventing
Mechanisms in
                 Iris Seeds" from the Annals of Botany (V58, p 551-561,

                 It would be a lot simpler for you if I were to give you
a condensed
                 version of these works, but I would really like for
someone else to read
                 these works, then we could discuss the conclusions,
their validity and
                 their impact on iris breeding and culture.

                 R. Dennis Hager, who is "in too deep"
                 on Delmarva

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