Invasive Species Compendium

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Abstract

Effect of smoke, charred wood, and nitrogenous compounds on seed germination of ten species from woodland in Central-Western Spain.

Abstract

The effect of smoke, charred wood, and nitrogenous compounds on germination was tested on 10 species of the Cistaceae, Poaceae, Fabaceae, and Asteraceae, from fire-prone, shrubby woodlands in central-western Spain. Dry seeds were exposed to smoke, by watering with distilled water-charred wood suspensions, or NaNO2, KNO3, NH4Cl, and NH4NO3. Smoke enhanced germination in 9 of 10 of the species. In species of Poaceae, germination was stimulated by 20 min of smoke exposure. In Asteraceae and Fabaceae species, 10 min of smoke exposure was the most effective treatment for enhancing germination. Three species - Cistus ladanifer, Cistus crispus, and Cistus monspeliensis - had a positive response to 20 min of smoke exposure; germination of Cistus salviifolius L. was also enhanced after 10 min. The effect of charred wood was variable, with no consistent germination pattern within the families. Trifolium angustifolium and Retama sphaerocarpa showed no stimulation of germination under most of the charred wood concentrations. Similarly, germination of Senecio jacobea under the charred wood treatment did not surpass that of the control. NaNO2 promoted seed germination in Dactylis glomerata (10 mM), Cistus ladanifer (1, 10, and 25 mM), and Cistus crispus (1 and 10 mM). KNO3 enhanced germination in Dactylis glomerata (1 and 25 mM), Dittrichia viscosa (10 and 25 mM), C. ladanifer (1, 10, and 25 mM), Cistus crispus (1 and 25 mM), and C. salviifolius and C. monspeliensis (25 mM). NH4Cl induced germination of Dactylis glomerata and Dittrichia viscosa (1 mM), and Cistus species germinated best in 25 mM of this salt. NH4NO3 induced germination only in Cistus species. Holcus lanatus had the highest level of germination regardless of treatment.