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Open AccessArticle

Influence of Scarification on the Germination Capacity of Acorns Harvested from Uneven-Aged Stands of Pedunculate Oak (Quercus robur L.)

1
Faculty of Technical Sciences, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, ul. Oczapowskiego 11, 10-719 Olsztyn, Poland
2
Faculty of Forestry, University of Agriculture in Cracow, Al. 29 Listopada 46, 31-425 Kraków, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2018, 9(3), 100; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9030100
Received: 8 February 2018 / Revised: 21 February 2018 / Accepted: 23 February 2018 / Published: 26 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Seedling Production and Field Performance of Seedlings)
Scarification involves the partial removal of the seed coat on the side of the hilum, opposite the radicle, to speed up germination in acorns. The aim of this study was to determine the influence of scarification on the germination capacity of pedunculate oak acorns, selected and prepared for sowing. The diameter, length and mass of acorns were measured before and after scarification in four batches of acorns harvested from uneven-aged trees (76, 91, 131 and 161 years). The measured parameters were used to determine the correlations between acorn dimensions and mass, and to calculate the dimensional scarification index and the mass scarification index in acorns. Individual complete and scarified acorns from every batch were germinated on sand and peat substrate for 28 days. The analyzed acorns were characterized by average size and mass. Scarification decreased acorn mass by around 22% and acorn length by around 31% on average. Scarification and the elimination of infected acorns increased germination capacity from around 64% to around 81% on average. Acorns can be divided into size groups before scarification to obtain seed material with varied germination capacity. Larger acorns with higher germination capacity can be used for sowing in container nurseries, whereas smaller acorns with lower germination capacity can be sown in open-field nurseries. View Full-Text
Keywords: Quercus robur L.; seed size; scarification index; germination Quercus robur L.; seed size; scarification index; germination
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Kaliniewicz, Z.; Tylek, P. Influence of Scarification on the Germination Capacity of Acorns Harvested from Uneven-Aged Stands of Pedunculate Oak (Quercus robur L.). Forests 2018, 9, 100.

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