GERMINATION TRIALS OF GARCINIA KOLA AND ITS EARLY GROWTH CHARATERISTICS

Author: Ochia Angela Mma
Department: Botany
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

The study on enhancing germination of Garcina kola Heckel was conducted using 5 pre-treatments. The aim of this study was to determine the best pre-treatment for optimum germination of G kola and also investigate its early growth characteristics. These include Soaking 20 seeds of each treatment in clean cold water at room temperature for periods of 48, 72, 96 hours, 1 and 2 weeks respectively before sowing; subjecting seds to hot water treatment at 500c, 700c and 900c for 30 minutes respectively; treating seeds in concentrated sulphuric acid for 10, 30 and 60 minutes respectively; removal of the seed coat of seeds and the control seeds (no treatment). Top soil was used as germination medium. The results showed that removal of seed coat and also soaking of seeds in cold water for 96hours respectively proved very effective for germinating the seeds of G. kola and were thus recommended for its propagation. G. kola showed hypogeal germination, the cotyledons were not separated (eudicot) and the bifoliate leaves showed alternate leaf arrangement. The seedlings were wilted easily under intense daylight temperature and water shortage. Its growth rate (17cm in 20 weeks) was quite slow, by all standards, and this gives an indication of what it could be in nature and, given a high population density in the tropical rain forest area of Nigeria where it naturally dominates. This possibly account for the species being almost extinct. Thus, this study has provided better understanding of its propagation which is needed by farmers, as this will help this all-important threatened species from going into extinction.

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