Does Planting Depth Affect Seed Growth?

985 words - 4 pages

When planting a seed, many factors allow the seed to grow and become a plant. To sprout from the ground, and to survive, seeds need water, air, and a certain temperature. Seeds can get water, oxygen, and sun by being placed at the proper planting depth. Planting depth is the depth at which a seed is placed in the soil. If a seed is exposed to these important needs, it goes through a process called germination. According to the Wise Geek article, “What is Germination?”, “Germination is a process in which a seed or spore awakens from dormancy and starts to sprout.” (“What is Germination?”).
The germination process begins when water and oxygen are pulled into the seed by the seed’s coating. The embryo’s cells grow bigger as water and air enter the seed. After this step, a root sprouts from the seed. Next, a stem and leaves shoot through the dirt. Poor germination can be caused by improper planting depth, over watering, or dry conditions. Improper planting depth causes the seed to use all of its resources before it breaks through the surface. Over watering blocks the intake of oxygen. Last but not least, dry conditions do not allow a seed’s cells to enlarge and the root and stem to sprout. (The Great Plant Escape).
The development of a seed into a plant starts with a primary root coming from the seed. The root grows down and stations the plant. The seed moves up, and a stem moves toward the surface. Followed by the stem are the cotyledons.(Zerega). In the article “Cotyledon” the author states, “Cotyledon, is the leafy portion of a plant's embryo. The embryo is the part of the seed from which a mature plant develops.” (Armstrong).

An experiment conducted by J. Qiu and J. A. Mosjidis gave results about planting depth and its effect on seeds from the plant “sericea lespedeza”. In the journal article “Genotype and Planting Depth Effects on Seedling Vigor in Sericea Lespedeza”, the authors tell, “Moore (1943) observed that as planting depth increased from 0.6 to 2.5 cm, emergence decreased from 83 to 35% at 49 days after planting in a greenhouse study and from 58 to 18% at 30 days after planting in a field experiment.” (Qiu and Mosjidis). Something that can be concluded from this is that a major change in planting depth does affect seed growth. Another experiment that provided similar results was conducted by J. L. Beveridge and C. P. Wilsie. In the journal article “Influence of Depth of Planting, Seed Size, and Variety on Emergence and Seeding Vigor in Alfalfa”, the writers explain, “Emergence of seedlings of three varieties of alfalfa decreased as depth of seeding was increased.” (Beveridge and Wilsie).
Planting depth of crops can vary. The depth at which seeds are placed can be changed if the conditions are morphed to fit the plant’s needs. A crop such...

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