As harvest time approaches many of us are thinking about how this season’s weather will affect Seed Quality this year. Reminiscent of 2002, we had a cold spring, drought, and a threat of early frost. We are all hoping for an open fall and an Indian summer which would make all the difference for many crops still ripening in the field.
We are preparing for an interesting year; I suspect that we will face a number of challenges with germination and disease.
Immature seed which is associated with dormancy will almost certainly be present in all crop types. As you may know, breaking dormancy with a Potassium nitrate solution and extending the pre-chill period often does the trick. If you find yourself in this situation, you will know that we are retesting to get the best results possible and it will take longer to get your results back.
If time is of the essence I would strongly suggest that you request the seed viability test known as a Tetrazolium chloride test. Although not officially recognized in Canada it is used instead of germination in the United States. TZ is quick, accurate and useful when a germination result is required prior to cleaning or shipping seed. We use TZ frequently on cereals, peas and grasses.
You will still receive the official germination results, which would support your TZ.