The Effects of Weak Static Magnetopriming on Seed Germination and Plant Growth
Magnetotropism is a growing area of study, as it has shown to increase the growth and resilience of plants to external abiotic stressors. Establishing new cost-effective production methods that can contribute to the ongoing success of agricultural production is important, thus weak static/permanent magnets and their impact on seed germination and plant mass are further investigated in this study. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of a low magnetic field preseed treatment of four types of seeds (bell peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, and wheatgrass) on seed germination and plant mass. The seeds and plants were subjected to an ex-vitro quantitative analysis after emergence and 14 days of development. Seeds were magnetized using 4x100 Gauss magnets for 1 minute, 1 hour, and 3 hours, and it was hypothesized there would be a small, but measurable increase in seed germination and plant mass. After 14 days, comparisons were made between the control and treatments on seed germination percentage and fresh plant mass. The plant’s masses were compared across trials using a one-way ANOVA to test for statistical significance. Overall, this study did not support our hypothesis (p>0.05), however, it is believed that the static magnets used were too weak relative to other studies which did obtain a significant result. Keywords: Magnetism; ion content; seed pre-treatment; germination; plant growth.