Planting Quality Seed

Photo by Southeast AgNet Radio

Dr. Justin Tuggle did a great job at the Organic Cotton/Peanut Seminar discussing peanut seed quality.  He showed some great pictures of peanut seed with the seed coat removed showing the damage underneath. His point, which is 100% right, is that this damage is causing the germination problems in peanut fields and this damage is mostly caused by harvest equipment.  

I was in a “webinar” recently and part of the discussion was damaged cotton seed as well.  Some observations have shown that upwards of 30% of the seed in a bag is damaged in some way.  In some cases, the damage was up to 50%.  The seed may germinate but it is evident that the vigor is diminished.  This was in a conventional seed bag with seed treatments!

Corn seed can have just as many problems but again seed treatments can make a difference and do.  I have seen lots of estimates but in cold soils damaged corn seed in the bag can lower overall germination 20% to as much as 50%.

This issue is difficult to solve but realizing some of the causes is a big first step.

Author: Bob Whitney, Regents Fellow & Extension Organic Specialist

Agriculturalist, extension educator and researcher, organic agriculture enthusiast and promoter, international program developer, Christian, husband, father and friend.

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