Smoke Chemical That Causes Seed Germination Found

Rachel Saunders
Sun, 01 Aug 2004 07:34:58 PDT
The smoke is already available, but not as the purified chemical.  In
Australia one can buy "smoke water" - water through which smoke has been
bubbled, and in South africa we can buy filter paper discs that have been
impregnated with smoke. One soaks the discs in water, the magic ingredients
come out of the filter paper into the water, and one soaks the seeds in the
smoke water. Or you can use the water to water your bulbs.  It works very
well. Many South African plant seeds will not germinate without smoke, and
these paper discs are probably the simplest method to use.
Rachel Saunders
Cape Town

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jim Lykos" <>
To: "Pacific Bulb Society" <>
Sent: Friday, July 09, 2004 9:48 AM
Subject: Re: [pbs] Smoke Chemical That Causes Seed Germination Found


I heard an interview with one of the  research scientist's involved on
the radio, he stated that it will probably be available for
Horticultural commercial purposes in 2 to 3 years but the  home
gardener's safe version of this chemical will be released in around 5 years.


Jim Lykos
Blue Mountains

> So when and where can we buy some of this chemical?
> --Lee Poulsen
> Pasadena area, California, USDA Zone 9-10
> -----------------------------------------------------------
> type=scienceNews&storyID=5626740&section=news
> Smoke Chemical That Causes Seed Germination Found
>  Fri July 09, 2004 02:11 AM ET
>  SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian scientists have identified the
> chemical  in smoke that makes plant seeds germinate after bushfires, a
> discovery  that could reap huge benefits for the agricultural sector.
>  A team of Australian scientists has become the world's first
> research  team to pinpoint the previously unknown chemical, called a
> butenolide,  which induces germination in a range of plant species
> including celery,  parsley and echinacea.
>  "This discovery represents one of the most significant advances in
> seed science with benefits in the natural, agricultural, conservation
> and restoration sciences," said Geoff Gallup, science minister in
> Western Australia state, on Friday.
>  Scientists say the discovery could give farmers a multi-million
> dollar  edge in weed control by allowing them to speed up the
> germination of  dormant seeds.
>  "With further testing, this could help farmers who want to control
> crop weeds, without having to wait so long for the seeds to germinate
> again before being eradicated," said Kingsley Dixon, the scientist
> who  directed the Western Australian study.
>  The findings could also lead to improved bush regeneration and
> conservation policies, scientists said.
>  Researchers around the world first became interested in identifying
> the chemical in smoke that caused seed germination when a team of
> South  African botanists proved 15 years ago that it was bush smoke,
> not heat  and ash, that caused plants to seed.
> © Reuters  2004. All rights reserved.
> -----------------------------------------------------------
> Smoke compound discovery may revolutionise agriculture -
>  Scientists in Western Australia have discovered a chemical compound
> in  smoke that could revolutionise agriculture.
> Kingsley Dixon and a team from the Kings Park and Botanic Gardens in
> Perth says the compound help seeds to germinate.
> And it'll be as important for home gardeners as it will for Landcare
> groups and the farm sector.
> "We've looked at a couple of vegetable crop species, for example, and
> got up to doubling of germination in some of these species: for
> example, celery, parsley, lettuce; and we've even got Echinacea, the
> one that's used to make cough medicines; we've increased its
> germination by almost double just using this smoke chemical."
> "So with further research, which we're wanting to do, we think
> there's  potentially some benefits across a number of key agricultural
> sectors."
> This is a transcript from the ABC National Rural News that is
> broadcast  daily to all states on ABC Regional Radio's Country Hour
> and in the  city on ABC News Radio.
> ©2004 ABC
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