Under-developed seeds germinating in canola pod

We are seeing instances of undeveloped “green” seeds that are germinating in the pod and in some cases shooting a root down the length of the pod. The plants are not affected by any disease, and have good soil conditions.

Answer

This has been seen in different regions of the province recently. With the hot and dry weather during ripening, we would normally assume seed sprouting while still on the plant should not occur. However, under very dry conditions “precocious seed sprouting” can occur.

In drought conditions, a hormone imbalance can occur in the seeds and prevent the hormones that stop sprouting to function properly, letting seeds sprout before the crop has reached physiological maturity. This was seen in 2010 during similar dry conditions in Alberta’s Peace River region. Unfortunately, nothing can be done to prevent this.

The CropChatter Team

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