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Objectif végétal : une dynamique partenariale

Separated by coma

Seed vigour, a lever to improve yields

It is essential, both for plant protein production and for the development of sustainable agriculture, to increase legume crop surfaces. Rapid and uniform seedling establishment of legume crops is a strong lever to stabilise yields and thus encourage legume crop cultivation.

Seed vigour (or germinative quality) represents the characteristics that allow a seed lot to germinate and emerge quickly and uniformly under (sub)optimal growth conditions.


Seeds must conserve this vigour until sowing

Even dry, seeds remain alive. However, seed vigour progressively diminishes during storage due to ageing.

Seed vigour depends on genotype x environment interactions, which is very important considering the stresses the plants/seeds are submitted to due to climate change:

  • Abiotic stresses (hydric, thermal, saline stresses)
  • Biotic stress (sanitary pressure in a context of pesticide reduction and  global warming)


Objective for the professionnals of seed sector:

Produce seed lots that :

  • Properly develop their germinative quality
  • Conserve this germinative quality until sowing
  • Express this vigour to ensure correct seedling establishment settling down.


Seed experts of IRHS develop multidisciplinary approaches to decipher the mechanisms involved in: the development of the physiological quality of seeds during their maturation, the impact of the environment on this development, the expression of the germinative quality during crop installation.
This research topic is essential for varietal pre-selection and varietal creation since it aims to identify the genes involved in the ability of seed lots to germinate and to emerge quickly in the field, which will be pivotal for high yield.
The researchers of IRHS regularly transfer their expertise to numerous species of interest that show difficulties in terms of the different seed qulaity parameters (seed stability, germination vigour, seedling ermegence).

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