Soil seed banks: a sneak preview into the future

Soil seed banks: a sneak preview into the future

Many arid land plants possess seed dormancy, enabling them to delay germination until receiving environmental cues that stimulate development. Dormant seeds within the soil create seed banks that are a valuable resource for regeneration of native plant communities after disturbance. Seed germination and soil seed bank research is important to better understand soil seed bank dynamics, appropriately select restoration seed mixes, and gauge the restoration potential contained within existing soil seed banks.

Seed-based restoration of damaged Mediterranean coastal habitats: the Sardinia case

Seed-based restoration of damaged Mediterranean coastal habitats: the Sardinia case

The Mediterranean Basin is one of the most important plant diversity hotspots worldwide; however, its sandy coasts are affected by strong erosive processes, also accentuated by the disappearance of dune and submerged vegetation caused by human exploitation. Therefore, in the Mediterranean area the plant species conservation and ecological habitat restoration are of major importance for sustainable development.

The International Seed Society’s Second Seed Longevity Workshop

The International Seed Society’s Second Seed Longevity Workshop

The USDA Agricultural Research Service’s National Laboratory for Genetic Resources Preservation hosted the International Society for Seed Science’s (ISSS) Second Seed Longevity Workshop at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, on July 20 – August 1, 2018.  About 100 participants from 22 countries attended.  ISSS aims to foster and promote research, education and communication in the scientific understanding of seeds.  The workshop is held to discuss current findings and propose new directions for future research on seed longevity. Papers from the meeting will be available later in a Special Issue of Seed Science Research “Seeds, Conservation and Biodiversity”.

Roadside Revegetation – An Integrated Approach to Establishing native Plants and Pollinator Habitat and the Ecoregional Revegetation Application Tool

Roadside Revegetation – An Integrated Approach to Establishing native Plants and Pollinator Habitat and the Ecoregional Revegetation Application Tool

Roadsides can play an important role in the conservation of both native plants and declining wild and managed pollinator species.  In an effort to enhance the success of roadside revegetation projects and create habitat that is favorable for pollinators, the US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (USFS) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) partnered with the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation and Chicago Botanic Garden to release a new DRAFT manual:  Roadside Revegetation – An Integrated Approach to Establishing Native Plants and Pollinator Habitat. 

How to pellet seeds

How to pellet seeds

This publication provides the first public domain and practical step-by-step guide on how to do seed pelleting, along with the list of materials and equipment needed. These instructions and materials will help scientists develop seed coating technologies capable of overcoming logistical and biological barriers to the more effective use and deployment of native seed across the world while enabling the native seed industry to improve seed-based restoration.

Formation of the European Native Seed Producers Association

Formation of the European Native Seed Producers Association

A Dutch, a French and an Irishman walk into a German native seed farm.

That’s quite a good start for a joke based on national stereotypes. But when the Dutch, French and Irishman are followed by the Scottish, Spanish, Danish, German, Italian, English, Swedish, Czech, Polish, Swiss, Austrian and a Portuguese (on crutches) the joke might be getting a bit out of hand. And they’re not visiting just one farm. They’re on a mission to fit as many native seed companies as possible in a super tight five days schedule across most of Germany, and Switzerland.

The Sagebrush Seed Work Group

The Sagebrush Seed Work Group

The sagebrush biome in western North America (Fig. 1) is experiencing degradation principally from increased frequency of disturbances and the displacement of sagebrush, primarily big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), and other native shrubs, forbs, and grasses by invasive species. This process has resulted in the loss of flora and fauna (e.g., greater sage-grouse, Centrocercus urophasianus) that depend on these ecosystems. Restoration of sagebrush ecosystems, either by seeding or planting nursery stock of sagebrush and other native plants, is our best defense to reduce the expansion of invasives and improve degraded lands.