Propagation of Ornamental Plants
9(1): 35-38, 2009
GERMINATION STUDIES OF CAPPARIS SPINOSA L.
Majda Khalil Suleiman*, Narayana Ramachandra Bhat, Mehdi Saleh Abdal,
Sheena Jacob, Rini Rachel Thomas, Sarah Al-Dossery, and Ricardo Bellen
Aridland Agriculture and Greenery Department (AAD), Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR), P. O. Box 24885, Safat 13109, Kuwait, *Fax: + 965 4989849,
For the development of vegetation in Kuwait, several ornamental trees and shrubs are being introduced and evaluated for their suitability under its harsh environmental conditions. Caper (Capparis spinosa L.) is a multipurpose crop native to Mediterranean area, known for its drought- and salinity tolerance and its ability to conserve soil moisture. Poor seed germination due to physical and physiological dormancy is a major limitation for its large scale cultivation. A study was carried out to investigate the effects of acid scarification followed by a combination of seed treatments including 0.04% gibberellic acid (GA3), one, two or three weeks chilling or warm water treatment with one, two or three months chilling on germination of dry caper seeds that were sown either in Petri dishes or directly in the potting medium. The results showed that scarification with 1% H2SO4 for 20 min followed by 0.04% GA3 and one week chilling at 4ºC was the most effective in breaking dormancy of dry caper seeds and resulted in 64% germination in commercial substratum (SAB Potting Soil-Plantaflor) containing a nixture of slightly decomposed peat (white peat) and more strongly decomposed peat (frozen black peat) with organic mather less than 95% and nutrients like nitrogen (100-300 mg l-1), phosphate (100-300 mg l-1), and potassium (100-400 mg l-1) as compared to warm water treatment with three months chilling, which gave 42% germination.
Key words: Capparis spinosa, chilling, dormancy, gibberellic acid, potting medium, scarification