A. R. Midgley

Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Arts (MA)


Plants, Soils, and Climate


George Stewart


It is surprising to know the small amount of work that has been done on alternate freezing and thawing of seeds. Many experiments, however, have been conducted to see the effect of very low temperatures on seeds and to notice the effect it had on their vitality. Some experimenters subjected seeds to temperatures as low as liquid hydrogen with very interesting results but in very few cases, if any, was the effect of alternate freezing and thawing studied.

The work that follows deals directly with the effects of alternate freezing and thawing on impermeable seeds of alfalfa and of dodder. It is known that this seed does not germinate readily; therefore it often lays over winter in the soil. Does this natural freezing and thawing aid or hinder this impermeable seed in it's later germination? this has been the main question kept in mind throughout this experiment.