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Keywords:

  • dry after-ripening;
  • glumes;
  • NaCl;
  • psammophilous species;
  • recovery

Abstract

Phleum sardoum is an endemic psammophilous species of Sardinia, growing exclusively on coastal sandy dunes. The effect of glumes on seed germination, germination requirements at constant (5–25°C) and alternating (25/10°C) temperatures, both in the light (12/12 h) and in the dark were evaluated, as well as the effect of a dry after-ripening period (90 days at 25°C), the salt stress effect (0–600 mmol NaCl) and its recovery on seed germination. The presence of glumes reduced final germination percentages. For fresh naked seeds, high germination percentages were observed at 10°C. Dry after-ripening increased germination rate at low temperatures, but did not affect final germination percentages. NaCl determined a secondary salt-induced dormancy which recovery interrupted only partially. Our results highlighted that this species has its optimum of germination during autumn–winter when, under a Mediterranean climate, water availability is highest and soil salinity levels are minimal.