Viability of Erythronium Seed

Jane McGary
Mon, 16 Jan 2006 11:49:21 PST
Gerhard asked,
>does anyone know how long erythronium seed retains its viability (E. 
>revolutum, hendersonii)

Seeds of most western American species of Erythronium retain their 
viability well in dry storage for at least two years and possibly more, 
although germination may be slow. This is not ture of eastern American and 
Eurasian species, which have a brief period of viability.

No doubt the difference stems from the different climatic patterns in these 
regions. The western American species ripen their seeds during a dry part 
of the year and the seeds may not receive any moisture for 5 months or more 
after dropping. Erythronium species elsewhere in the world would probably 
experience rain soon after the seeds ripen.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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