Why are the seeds of this species difficult? The seeds may have physiological dormancy, which can be overcome by mimicking the seasonal patterns of the species' native habitat.
Solanum mammosum (Image: S.Wood, RBG Kew)
This species has Orthodox seeds. To avoid a decline in viability, remove seeds from ripe fruits soon after harvest and allow to dry slowly, under ambient conditions, before transferring to a cool dry room. Dry to 15-20% eRH and store at -20ºC, or as cool as possible.
Germinate on agar, germination paper or sand, under an alternating temperature regime of 20/10°C or 30/20°C (with an 8/16 photoperiod), depending on local climatic conditions. It may be necessary to add 250 mg/l gibberellic acid to the germination medium to encourage growth.
The seeds of this species may be Physiologically Dormant (based on other species in the same genus). If germination is low, this type of seed dormancy can be overcome by mimicking the seasonal patterns of the species' native habitat. Use a moist pre-chill or pre-heat treatment (depending on local climatic conditions) or a dry after-ripening treatment, before germinating the seeds on agar, germination paper or sand at their optimum temperature. If this does not work, you can perform delicate surgery to enable the embryo to grow. Excise the tissue near the root tip.
(Image: S. Wood, RBG Kew)
See more images of this species at the Digital Atlas of Economic Plants.
Accepted name: Solanum mammosum L.
Synonyms: Solanum cornigerum André, Solanum globiferum Dunal, Solanum platanifolium Hook., Solanum villosissimum Zucc.
Common name: nipple eggplant
References and Links
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (1994). Genebank Standards. FAO/IPGRI, Rome, Italy.
- AFPD - Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques de la Ville de Genève, Switzerland, and South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, RSA: Solanum mammosum.
- PROTAbase (Plant Resources of Tropical Africa) - Wageningen, Netherlands: Solanum mammosum.
- SID (Seed Information Database) - Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, UK: Solanum mammosum.
- Tropicos - Missouri Botanical Garden, USA: Solanum mammosum.