Ephemeral wetland vegetation (EWV) in the Mediterranean Basin appears in temporary wetlands where favourable hydrological conditions exist only for a short time and year-to-year variability is high. Here, we report results of the seed germination, dormancy and desiccation tolerance of eight annual species living in this vulnerable habitat. Experiments were performed in laboratory conditions under constant and alternating temperatures and using a 12-h daily photoperiod or continuous darkness. Whilst germination and dormancy differed between the species, seeds demonstrated an absolute light requirement and prefer cool temperatures to germinate (mean a parts per thousand currency sign15 A degrees C). Logistic regression analysis showed significant effects of alternating temperature in all the species except in Tillaea vaillantii whose germination was stimulated by constant temperature. Mean temperature was a significant term in the logistic models for the dormant species Cicendia filiformis, Linum radiola and T. vaillantii for which after-ripening was an effective dormancy-breaking treatment. From these results we infer three strategies of regeneration by seeds: (1) species germinating during the whole vegetative season (2) species germinating in a narrow temperature niche and (3) species requiring flooding (T. vaillantii). Seeds possessed orthodox storage behaviour (tolerating drying to 15 % relative humidity) and may be amenable to seed banking as a means of ex-situ conservation. We conclude that EWV species are adapted to the irregular presence of water with characteristics that are typical of neither truly aquatic nor wetland plants. These EWV species showed a more plastic germination response based on alternating and constant temperature sensitivity and a low proportion of dormant seeds.

Comparative seed dormancy and germination of eight annual species of ephemeral wetland vegetation in a Mediterranean climate

CARTA, ANGELINO;BEDINI, GIANNI;
2013

Abstract

Ephemeral wetland vegetation (EWV) in the Mediterranean Basin appears in temporary wetlands where favourable hydrological conditions exist only for a short time and year-to-year variability is high. Here, we report results of the seed germination, dormancy and desiccation tolerance of eight annual species living in this vulnerable habitat. Experiments were performed in laboratory conditions under constant and alternating temperatures and using a 12-h daily photoperiod or continuous darkness. Whilst germination and dormancy differed between the species, seeds demonstrated an absolute light requirement and prefer cool temperatures to germinate (mean a parts per thousand currency sign15 A degrees C). Logistic regression analysis showed significant effects of alternating temperature in all the species except in Tillaea vaillantii whose germination was stimulated by constant temperature. Mean temperature was a significant term in the logistic models for the dormant species Cicendia filiformis, Linum radiola and T. vaillantii for which after-ripening was an effective dormancy-breaking treatment. From these results we infer three strategies of regeneration by seeds: (1) species germinating during the whole vegetative season (2) species germinating in a narrow temperature niche and (3) species requiring flooding (T. vaillantii). Seeds possessed orthodox storage behaviour (tolerating drying to 15 % relative humidity) and may be amenable to seed banking as a means of ex-situ conservation. We conclude that EWV species are adapted to the irregular presence of water with characteristics that are typical of neither truly aquatic nor wetland plants. These EWV species showed a more plastic germination response based on alternating and constant temperature sensitivity and a low proportion of dormant seeds.
Carta, Angelino; Bedini, Gianni; Jonas V., Müller; Robin J., Probert
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11568/375668
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