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Seeds of the threatened dry rainforest tree Cadellia pentastylis (Surianaceae) are non-dormant
Seed Science Research  (IF2.25),  Pub Date : 2022-01-10, DOI: 10.1017/s0960258521000301
Nathan J. Emery, Justin C. Collette

Cadellia pentastylis (Surianaceae) is an Australian endemic threatened rainforest tree. Irregular flowering and fruiting events coupled with high rates of infertility and insect predation has meant that seed testing has not been possible for this species. Seeds were opportunistically collected from a wild population in early 2021, which allowed for the first germination tests to be conducted. In this study, the presence of physical dormancy was examined by performing an imbibition test using scarified and non-scarified seeds. We also investigated whether a 5-min heat shock treatment at temperatures ranging from 60 to 120°C improved germination success. The presence of physiological dormancy was also examined by recording germination success following a gibberellic acid or smoke-water pre-treatment. Both scarified and non-scarified seeds readily imbibed water over a 72-h period, and several seeds had germinated in both treatments after 48 h. Final germination proportion and t50 following a heat shock, gibberellic acid or smoke-water pre-treatment did not significantly differ from the controls. We conclude that C. pentastylis seeds are non-dormant. Although a palisade cell layer has been reported in the endocarp, our results suggest that this layer may not be sufficiently formed to restrict germination. We recommend that seeds are collected from populations following dispersal and propagated shortly after or stored as conservation collections in ex situ Seedbanks.