Industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa l.) varieties and seed pre-treatments affect seed germination and early growth of seedlings

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Seed germination and seedling growth are two essential early determinants of subsequent crop yield and quality. A high germination percentage of industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) seed is required to import into Australia. The viability of hemp seed can decline rapidly depending on storage and other factors; hence, the quality of imported seed is not always reliable. Here, we aimed to investigate germination and early seedling growth responses of 14 industrial hemp varieties after being imported from various countries. Germination trials were conducted with 100 seeds of 14 varieties using a soil-less Petri dish assay and a compost growth medium under glasshouse conditions. We also assessed the effect of seed pre-treatments such as gibberellic acid (500 and 1000 mg·L−1), chlorine dioxide (500 and 1000 mg·L−1) and cold temperature (4C for 72 h) using 300 seeds of each of the three selected varieties in compost growth medium. Hemp varieties imported from China had higher germination and better seedling growth indices than those imported from Europe. All seed pre-treatments were associated with a decreasing trend in germination, but a positive effect on early growth responses was observed. Our findings indicate that the hemp variety Han FNQ performed better than many other varieties did regarding seed germination and seedling growth. Hemp seeds sanitising with 500 mg·L−1 of chlorine dioxide might improve the germination and early growth of seedlings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6
Pages (from-to)1
Number of pages14
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2022


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