NEW PERSPECTIVES ON SEED ENHANCEMENT
This review considers the challenges that agriculture will face during the coming decades and the role that seed enhancement will have in increasing the consistency of seed performance and, consequently, improving harvested yield and quality. Coating technologies, pelleting, encrusting and film-coating, are used increasingly to ease seed sowing by altering seed shape, surface properties and weight. They are also used to deliver a range of beneficial additives including micronutrients and plant protection agents; these include high dose systemic insecticides. Seed vigour or physiological status can be manipulated by hydration treatments such as by priming and steeping. Eradication of fungal and bacterial seed infections can be achieved through heat or biocide treatments although there are challenges in operating these processes at an industrial scale without jeopardising viability, vigour and shelf life. Since seed enhancement is a means of reducing the inherent variation in seed to release its genetic potential, it is vital that variation between seeds and seed lots is fully characterised when developing new technology. It is also noteworthy that whilst relatively few seed lots are evaluated in academia, a commercial seed enhancement company may routinely treat many thousands of lots from the same species with a particular process. This wealth of data provides insights into the development of improved seed enhancement.
Jamieson, G. (2008). NEW PERSPECTIVES ON SEED ENHANCEMENT. Acta Hortic. 782, 143-150
seed treatment, priming, seed coating, seed pelleting, seed disinfection