PRLog - Dec. 7, 2010 - It is a known fact that gardeners who are beginners want to accelerate germination as much as they can. Unfortunately, Mother Nature didn't simplify this task by designing every seed as tough and heavy as possible, which may improve the chances of survival rate of seeds in the wild, but makes it complicated for you to germinate your crops. To solve this problem, hydroponics growers treat their seeds before planting them by using hydroponics systems.
Scarification done mechanically
Scarification is basically means scratching, breaking or weakening the coating of the seed to soften it, therefore making it easier to reach the moisture and gasses it requires to germinate efficiently. If the quantity of your seeds is very small, you can simply rub them with sandpaper, soften their coats with a file or simply break them with a hammer. It is advisable that you do maximum damage to the outer layer of the seed rather injuring the seed wholly. On cracking the seeds, the coats should appear worn down, but see to it that the damage shouldn’t reach the core parts of the seed. There are quite a few mechanical techniques you might try on few seeds before you experiment on the full group.
Soaking the seeds
This is also a reliable method for softening tough shells. Heat a pot of water, in excess of 170 degrees Fahrenheit, to near-boiling. The level of water should be four times the volume of seeds. As soon as you place the seeds in the pot turn off the heat source. Slowly as the water cools down, soak the seeds in the water for about 18 hours, and then plant them immediately. Boiling can give the similar effects, but it is much more harmful to the seeds because of the high temperature. Therefore, it is advisable to not use the boiling method.
Scarification done with acid
Acid scarification is also a possible method to soften the seed coating with the help of acid to make plant propagation easier. However, you need to be cautious because it involves handling dangerous sulfuric acid. Therefore, you should be careful and it is advisable to wear appropriate clothes and goggles when using this method.
To start with this method, in a glass container place dry seeds and cover them with the layer of sulfuric acid. The precise ratio should be one layer of seed to two layers of acid. Ensure that you stir the seeds occasionally to soften the skin of the seed. The ideal temperature in the room where you are applying this treatment stays somewhere between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
The time of treatment depends upon how thick the coating is. It can be between 10 minutes and 5 fours. Remove a seed and see its thickness, to test, and as and when you feel the skin has become thin remove the seed immediately. Rinse the seeds for about 10 minutes immediately after the treatment.
The precise hydroponics systems that works best will totally depend upon the nature of the seed you are using for the propagation of your plants. You may be tempted to experiment different hydroponics systems to figure out which is suitable for fastest germination.
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