African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6256

Full Length Research Paper

Physiological and biochemical alterations during germination and storage of habanero pepper seeds

Franciele Caixet
  • Franciele Caixet
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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Édila Vilela De Resende Von Pinh
  • Édila Vilela De Resende Von Pinh
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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Renato Mendes Guimarães
  • Renato Mendes Guimarães
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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Pedro Henrique
  • Pedro Henrique
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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Andrade Rezende Pereira
  • Andrade Rezende Pereira
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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Hugo Cesar Rodrigues Moreira Catão
  • Hugo Cesar Rodrigues Moreira Catão
  • Department of Agriculture, Federal University of Lavras, C.P. 3037, 37200-000, Lavras, MG, Brazil.
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  •  Accepted: 12 November 2013
  •  Published: 06 February 2014

Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate physiological and biochemical alterations during the development and storage of habanero pepper seeds with a view toward determining the time of harvest. Seeds were manually extracted from the fruit at three stages of development: E1 (fruit with first signs of yellowing), E2 (mature fruit) and E3 (mature fruit submitted to seven days of rest). After drying, seeds with 8% water content were stored at 10°C for 0, 4 and 8 months, and their quality evaluated by means of germination and vigor tests. Activities of the enzymes α-amylase, endo-β-mannanase, esterase, Superoxide Dismutase (SOD), malate dehydrogenase (MDH) and alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) were evaluated during germination at 0, 48, 96 and 144 h after seeding. A randomized block design was used in a 3 × 3 factorial design (stages of development × storage) with 4 replications. Lower germination and vigor values were observed for the E1 stage seeds at all storage periods. In recently stored seeds, greater germination and vigor values were observed for the E3 stage seeds. Dormancy was observed principally in recently stored seeds and this was overcome at four months of storage. In summary, the physiological tests and activity of the enzymes evaluated indicated that the habanero pepper should be harvested at the E3 stage for a higher seed quality.

Key words: Capsicum chinense, seed maturation, seed quality.