Improvement of seed germination of caper (Capparis spinosa L.) through magnetic fields

M. Juan, N. Pascual-Seva, D. Iranzo, B. Pascual
Caper is a sub-shrub mainly used for its flower buds, essentially in food, but also in the pharmacological industry. Low seed germination of caper due to dormancy results in low production of this crop. The exposure of seeds to stationary magnetic fields can improve germination and early seedling growth of horticultural crops. This experiment was designed to evaluate the effect of magnetic field with different intensities (0, 125 and 250 mT) and exposure times (1 h, 24 h and chronic exposure) on imbibition, germination and radicle growth of caper seed. Standard germination test was conducted and the growth of the seedlings was periodically determined using image analysis software. The exposure of caper seeds to magnetic fields increased imbibition, reaching values of seed moisture (39.5%) higher than the control (31%). Among different treatments, the highest final germination was obtained with both chronic exposure to 125 mT (82%) and 24 h exposure to magnetic fields of 250 mT (75%), while the germination of untreated seed was 57%. The positive effect of magnetic field exposure on seed germination only occurred with the addition of gibberellic acid to the substrate. As for radicle growth, the longest radicle was obtained by exposing the seeds for 24 h to magnetic fields of 250 mT and with the chronic exposure of the seeds to both magnetic fields.
Juan, M., Pascual-Seva, N., Iranzo, D. and Pascual, B. (2020). Improvement of seed germination of caper (Capparis spinosa L.) through magnetic fields. Acta Hortic. 1273, 433-440
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2020.1273.56
physical and physiological dormancy, imbibition, seedling growth, caper seed

Acta Horticulturae