Title page for ETD etd-11122007-091256

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Fontenot, Dexter Paul
URN etd-11122007-091256
Title Evaluating Seashore Paspalum Seed Germination and Enhancement, Erosion Abatement and Potential use as a Vegetative Landfarm Cap
Degree Master of Science (M.S.)
Department Horticulture
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Edward Bush Committee Chair
Charles Johnson Committee Member
Jeffrey Beasley Committee Member
  • germination
  • seed enhancement
  • landfarm cap
  • seashore paspalum
Date of Defense 2007-10-25
Availability unrestricted
Four temperatures were tested to determine the optimum temperature for seed germination of Paspalum vaginatum 'Seaspray' seed. Results indicated that Paspalum vaginatum germination percentage was greatest at 30C. Three seed enhancement treatments were applied to Paspalum vaginatum seed to determine improvements in germination percentage and MTG of the seed. Potassium nitrate, GA, and soaking seed in distilled water yielded greater germination percentages than the dry control. Seeds subjected to enhancement treatments had significantly faster MTG rates than the dry control seeds. Seeds also had higher germination percentage with exposure to light when compared to seeds that germinated in conditions not exposed to light. MTG was not significantly different.

Paspalum vaginatum seed was allowed to germinate at 0, 14, 28, and 42 days, before a simulated rainfall. Mean seed loss was significantly greater at 0, 14 and 28d before the rainfall, then 42d before the rainfall was significantly lowest in soil loss. Mean growth of seedlings after the rain simulation was highest at 0 and 14d planted before rainfall.

Paspalum vaginatum was compared with Cynodon dactylon and Eragrostis curvula as a possible turfgrass selection for usage as a vegetative cap over a brine landfarm. Grasses were planted in depths of 0, 5.08, 10.16, and 15.24 cm of river silt over the brine field. Results indicated that Paspalum vaginatum assimilated significantly greater quantities of Na than Cynodon dactylon, and Eragrostis curvula. Chloride was the only analyte that was measured in significantly greater amounts when compared by species and depth. Paspalum vaginatum growing in 5.08 cm contained highest concentrations of chloride in the plant tissue, indicating that Paspalum vaginatum would be a potential brine remediator species. The combined results from the four projects indicate that Paspalum vaginatum 'Seaspray' is a suitable turfgrass selection for the Gulf Coast states, especially in areas with saline soils.

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