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Keywords:

  • exposure relative humidity;
  • germination rate;
  • temperature;
  • time;
  • Zostera marina seed

Zostera marina is the only seagrass species whose seeds have been successfully used in large-scale restoration. Although progress has been made in refining Z. marina restoration protocols, additional information on Z. marina seed physiology is necessary as the science of seagrass restoration evolves. We tested the germination rates of Z. marina seeds under different relative humidities and temperatures for different periods of time. Z. marina seed moisture content (MC) and germination rates were also tested when seeds were exposed to a temperature of 25°C and relative humidity of 50%. Z. marina seeds suffered higher mortality when exposed to lower relative humidity and higher temperature for longer period of exposure time. A significant negative correlation was detected between seed germination rate and MC. Z. marina seeds are sensitive to desiccation exposure and long periods of exposure to air should be prevented to minimize seed mortality when seeds are used in restoration projects.