Gibberellic Acid (GA3) Applied to Flowering Heracleum sosnowskyi Decreases Seed Viability Even If Seed Development Is Not Inhibited

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/340151

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Žalnierius, T.; Šveikauskas, V.; Aphalo, P.J.; Gavelienė, V.; Būda, V.; Jurkonienė, S. Gibberellic Acid (GA3) Applied to Flowering Heracleum sosnowskyi Decreases Seed Viability Even If Seed Development Is Not Inhibited. Plants 2022, 11, 314.

Title: Gibberellic Acid (GA3) Applied to Flowering Heracleum sosnowskyi Decreases Seed Viability Even If Seed Development Is Not Inhibited
Author: Žalnierius, Tautvydas; Šveikauskas, Vaidevutis; Aphalo, Pedro J.; Gavelienė, Virgilija; Būda, Vincas; Jurkonienė, Sigita
Publisher: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
Date: 2022-01-25
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/340151
Abstract: Sosnowsky&rsquo;s hogweed (<i>Heracleum sosnowskyi</i> Manden.), an important invasive species in Eastern Europe, is a monocarpic perennial plant that propagates exclusively by seeds. Hence, interfering with seed viability could help control its spread. In the present study, we investigated the effect of exogenous GA<sub>3</sub> (25, 100 and 150 mg/L) sprayed twice onto flowering <i>H. sosnowskyi</i> plants on the development of fruits (mericarps) and their ability to germinate under field conditions over the growing seasons of 2018 and 2019. Mericarps from plants sprayed with GA<sub>3</sub> failed to develop normally. The width/length ratio of mericarps decreased by 23% to 25% after 150 mg/L GA<sub>3</sub> application and their average weight decreased between 7% and 39% under all GA<sub>3</sub> treatments. X-ray radiographs revealed that the internal structure was malformed, with many of the mericarps lacking well-developed seeds. Proportionally fewer well-developed mericarps were produced by GA<sub>3</sub>-treated plants than water-sprayed control plants in 2018. Seed germination assessed outdoors in seeds buried in the ground was also severely reduced (from 58% to 99% after 150 mg/L GA<sub>3</sub> application). This indicates that exogenous GA<sub>3</sub> sprays result in incomplete seed development and a consequent decrease in viability and germination. As the highest GA<sub>3</sub> dose used resulted in significantly reduced propagation of Sosnowsky&rsquo;s hogweed through seeds in the field, GA<sub>3</sub> provides a promising approach to the control of the spread of this invasive weed species.


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