Effect of fruit maturation stage and light on seed germination of Aiphanes aculeata
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Despite their spiny nature, Aiphanes palms are popular as ornamentals. They can be grown in various soil conditions, but achieve fast, luxuriant growth in sheltered positions with plenty of water. Shaded conditions are the best when plants are young. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of fruit maturation stage and light on the germination of seeds of A. aculeata. Fruits were collected at three different maturation stages: (1) yellow, (2) red, (3) collected on the ground without the fleshy mesocarp (removed by birds and insects). The fleshy mesocarp was also removed in treatments (1) and (2). All fruits were then treated with thiram and 25 seeds per plot were seeded in trays full of sand. The treatments (2) and (3) were subdivided in two other treatments: (a) 12 h photoperiod, (b) continuous darkness. The temperature was maintained at 30 degrees C. Seed germination began 34 days after sowing. After 160 days, the final germination percentage was (1) 54,67%, (2a) 61,33%, (2b) 65,33%, (3a) 38,00% and (3b) 45,33%. The best treatment was (2) independently of the light conditions.