Effects of pre-germination treatments and storage periods on germination, vigour, chemical and health composition of seeds of three cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) cultivars

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JULY, 2016
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Seeds of three cultivars of cassava were collected from the CSIR-Crops Research Institute at Fumesua in the Ashanti Region to determine the effect of storage periods and seed pregermination treatments on the germination percentage, physicochemical and health properties of seeds from the three varieties of cassava. The experiment was conducted under laboratory conditions and a 3 x 3 x 7 factorial in Completely Randomized Design (CRD) with three replications was used. The first factor was cultivar at three levels (Ahwengyanka-1, Ahwengyanka-2 and Aworowa-3); the second factor was pre-germination treatments at seven levels (hot water, cold water, mechanical scarification, three concentrations of acid scarification and no treatment as the control); the third factor was storage period at three levels (no storage, three months storage and six months storage). The study revealed that seeds of cassava stored for up to three months produced about 40% germination after undergoing the various pre-germination treatments. Seeds of the Aworowa-3 cultivar stored for six months produced the highest germination percentage of 61.0%. Seeds mechanically scarified with sand paper produced the highest germination percentage of 48.9% whereas seeds with no treatment recorded the least percentage of 34.8%. Seven fungi pathogens were identified on the three cultivars of cassava seeds irrespective of the cultivar and period of storage. The study concluded that Aworowa-3 seeds without storage produced a higher germination percentage than Ahwengyanka-1 and Ahwengyanka-2 seeds without storage but all the seeds of the three varieties had the highest germination percentage when stored for six months.
A thesis submitted to The School of Research and Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the award of Master of Philosophy Seed Science and Technology,