Development of a threshold model to predict germination of Populus tomentosa seeds after harvest and storage under ambient condition. PlOS one. 2013, 8(4): e62868.
Development of a threshold model to predict germination of Populus tomentosa seeds after harvest and storage under ambient condition.
Wei-Qing Wang, Hong-Yan Cheng, Song-Quan Song*
Effects of temperature, storage time and their combination on germination of aspen (Populus tomentosa) seeds were investigated. Aspen seeds were germinated at 5 to 30uC at 5uC intervals after storage for a period of time under 28uC and 75% relative humidity. The effect of temperature on aspen?seed?germination could not be effectively described by the thermal time (TT) model, which underestimated the germination rate at 5uC and poorly predicted the time courses of germination at 10, 20, 25 and 30uC. A modified TT model (MTT) which assumed a two-phased linear relationship between germination rate and temperature was more accurate in predicting the germination rate and percentage and had a higher likelihood of being correct than the TT model. The maximum lifetime threshold (MLT) model accurately described the effect of storage time on seed germination across all the germination temperatures. An aging thermal time (ATT) model combining both the TT and MLT models was developed to describe the effect of both temperature and storage time on seed germination. When the ATT model was applied to germination data across all the temperatures and storage times, it produced a relatively poor fit. Adjusting the ATT model to separately fit germination data at low and high temperatures in the suboptimal range increased the models accuracy for predicting seed germination. Both the MLT and ATT models indicate that germination of aspen seeds have distinct physiological responses to temperature within a suboptimal range.