Aqueous extract of coconut shell biochar as a pre-germination treatment increases seed germination and early seedling growth in chiltepín pepper (Capsicum annuum var. glabriusculum)
Keywords:capsaicinoids, dormancy, germinability, vigor index
Since the fruit of the Capsicum annuum L. var. glabriusculum (Dunal) Heiser and Pickergil (chiltepín pepper) has a low germination rate, we sought to determine whether using an aqueous biochar extract could improve this. Germination tests were performed out in Petri dishes, using wild chiltepín pepper seeds collected in Sonora, México, which were exposed for 24 h to aqueous extracts of coconut shell biochar (CSBA) at different doses (0.05, 0.10, 0.25, 0.50, 0.75, and 1.00%, w/v) and a control comprising deionized water. In addition to quantifying the germination rate, we determined the physical quality, viability, imbibition, electrical conductivity, seed pH, and capsaicin content. The fast green test showed an ideal physical quality (p = 0.5475), an imbibition rate > 65% (p > 0.05), and high viability 98.4% (p > 0.05). The wild chiltepín pepper seeds exposed to the CSBA0.05 and CSBA0.25 treatments increased the percentage germination rate (p < 0.001) to 80.9% and 71.7%, respectively. A higher percentage of normal seedlings resulted from CSBA0.05, CSBA0.10 and CSBA1.00 (p < 0.01), and a greater shoot length was obtained with CSBA0.05 (p < 0.01). The exposure of wild chiltepín seeds to aqueous CSBA for 24 h at low doses (CSBA0.05 and CSBA0.25) increase the germination rate, while CSBA0.05 could enhance early seedling growth.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Mari C. LÓPEZ-PÉREZ, Antonio JUÁREZ-MALDONADO, Adalberto BENAVIDES-MENDOZA, Susana GONZÁLEZ-MORALES, Fabián PÉREZ-LABRADA
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