Longevity of Seeds — Continued

Life Of Seeds 80

Longevity of Seeds — Continued

Life Of Seeds 81

Haberlandt's figures of longevity (Quoted in Johnson's " How Crops

Grow")

 

Percentage of Seeds that germinated in

1861 FROM THE YEARS

 

1850

1851

1854

1855

1857

1858

1859

1860

Barley .

0

0

24

0

48

33

92

97

Maize .

0

not tried

76

56

not tried

77

100

96

Oats ....

60

0

56

48

72

32

80

100

Rye ....

0

0

0

0

0

0

48

96

Wheat . . ..

0

0

8

4

73

60

84

89

Vitality of seeds buried in soil (W. J. Beal).

In the fall of 1879, fifty fresh seeds of each of twenty-one kinds of plants (mostly weeds) were mixed with moderately moist sand and placed in uncorked bottles that were buried twenty inches below the surface, with the mouths slanting downward. Acorns were buried near the bottles. Six tests have been made of these seeds. The crosses ( + ) indicate germinations: —

Names of Seeds tested as

KNOWN IN 1879

5th Year

10th Year

15th Year

20th Year

25th Year

30th Year

Amarantus retroflexus . . .

+

+

+

+

+

+

Ambrosia artemisisefolia . .

0

0

0

0

0

0

Brassica nigra.............

?

+

+

+

+

+

Bromus secalinus...............

0

0

0

0

0

0

Capsella Bursa-pastoris . . .

+

?

+

+

+

+

Erechtites hieracifolia.

0

6

0

0

0

0

Euphorbia maculata ....

0

0

0

0

0

0

Lepidium Virginicum ....

+

+

+

+

+

+

Lynchnis Githago.............

0

0

0

0

0

0

Maruta Cotula...........

+

+

+

0

+

0

Malva rotundifolia ....

+

0

0

+

0

0

Cenothera biennis

+

+

+

+

+

+

Plantago major.............

0

0

+

0

0

0

Polygonum Hydropiper .

0

+

+

+

+

possibly

Portulaca oleracea

0

+

+

+

+

0

Quercus rubra..........

0

0

0

0

0

0

Rumex cripsus........

+

?

+

+

+

+

Setaria glauca.............

+

+

+

0

+

+

Stellaria media..........

+

+

+

+

+

+

Thuja occidentalis...........

0

0

0

0

0

0

Trifolium repens..........

0

0

0

0

0

0

Verbascum Thapsus ....

+

?

+

+

0

0

In all of the six tests, eight species out of twenty-two failed to germinate; and of the remaining fourteen species, seeds of eight, possibly nine, germinated often when they had been buried thirty years. The acorns (Quercus rubra) buried near the bottles of seeds were all dead at the end of two years.

Average Yields of Garden Seed-Crops

 

When Crop is as good as 20 Bu. of Wheat per Acre would be

When Crop is very

HEAVY

 

lbs. of seed per acre

lbs. of seed per acre

Bean...........

600

1500

Pea..........

900

2500

Squash, summer.....

100

700

Squash, winter..............

100

400

Sweet corn.......

1000 to 2500 (according to variety)

2500 to 4000

Cucumber

150

700

Muskmelon.........

125

600

Watermelon.....

150

1000

Tomato...

100

400

Cabbage..............

250

800

The average crop is probably 10 to 20 per cent less than the figures given in the first column.