Seed Priming | Methods and Importance

Seed Priming

What is Seed Priming?

Seed priming is a precisely controlled hydration technique in which seeds are soaked in either water or a solution with low osmotic potential. This process is carried out to the point where metabolic activity associated with germination begins in the seeds, but the appearance of the radical is inhibited.

Priming induces the metabolic processes that are necessary for germination to occur without germination taking place.

This prevents the seeds from absorbing enough water for the radicle to develop, causing the seeds to stop growing during the lag period.

Why Seed Priming?

  • Improves seed emergence for optimum growing conditions.
  • Crop establishment is homogenous, allowing for continuous growth.
  • Fast emergence increases crop output potential through timely maturation.
  • Ensures a strong foundation even in adverse climatic conditions.
  • Improves seed quality for optimal crop performance.

Methods of Seed Priming

  1. Hydro priming
  2. Osmotic priming
  3. Bio priming
  4. Halo priming
  5. Drum priming
  6. Solid matrix priming
  7. Hormonal priming
  8. Magneto priming
  9. Nano priming
1. Hydro priming

Hydro priming is the process of soaking seeds in water before sowing, which may or may not be followed by air drying. Seeds are immersed in sterile distilled water at a suitable temperature, and the period of hydro-priming is adjusted by managing seed imbibition during germination.

Hydro priming decreases the time that the seed spends in the seedbed simply imbibing water.

2. Osmotic priming

Osmotic priming of seeds, also known as osmopriming or osmoconditioning, is the practice of incubating seeds in aerated solutions with low water potential that are then rinsed off. Polyethylene glycol (PEG), Potassium Nitrate, Potassium Chloride (KCL), Sodium Chloride (NaCl), Glycerol, Sorbitol, or Mannitol are examples of osmoticants that produce solutions with a lower water potential.

Osmo priming is the immersion of seeds in a solution with a lower water potential, which limits the rate and extent of seed imbibition.

Osmo priming is analogous to a longer initial imbibition of seeds, which promotes the continued progress of numerous pre-germinative metabolic processes.

3. Bio priming of Seed

Bio-priming is a biological seed treatment procedure that involves hydrating seeds and inoculating them with helpful organisms to protect them.

It is an ecological method that employs either bacteria or chosen fungal antagonists to combat soil and seed-borne diseases.

4. Halo priming

Halo priming is the process of soaking seeds in a solution of inorganic salts such as NaCl, KNO3, KCI, KH2PO4, CaCl₂, and CaSO4.

5. Drum priming

This is the process of sprinkling seeds with water and then re-drying them before they germinate completely. Seeds are rotated in a drum with a controlled amount of water delivered as a thin mist.

6. Solid matrix priming

Solid matrix priming involves immersing seeds in a solid, insoluble matrix, such as vermiculite, diatomaceous earth, or another polymer with a high water absorption capacity. This technique is accompanied by a restricted amount of water, allowing for progressive hydration.

7. Hormonal priming

Hormonal priming refers to the application of various hormones, such as salicylic acid, ascorbate, kinetin, and others, as a treatment before sowing the seeds. This treatment is aimed at enhancing the growth and development of the seedlings.

To initiate this process, the seeds were submerged in an oxygenated solution containing hormones such as GA, kinetin, ABA, proline, and salicylic acid.

8. Magneto priming

Magneto seed priming involves putting the seed into a magnetic field.

9. Nano priming

Seed priming is a procedural method whereby seeds are treated with nanoparticles such as Sio2, Tio₂, and silver nanoparticles.

These nanoparticles have the capability to selectively target distinct cellular organelles within seeds to discharge their contents.

Nanoparticles contribute to the augmentation of water absorption in seeds, as well as the initiation of enzymatic and hormonal reactions throughout the process of seed germination and subsequent plant development.


Seed priming is a regulated hydration process that improves seed germination and crop yield. It provides uniform emergence by triggering metabolic activity required for germination without actually sprouting, making it suited for a variety of environmental situations. Seed priming improves seed quality and resilience using a variety of approaches, including hydro, osmotic, bio, halo, and drum priming, all adapted to specific needs. From hormonal to magneto and nano priming, the spectrum broadens, providing novel techniques for better results. As farmers adopt these approaches and capitalize on their benefits for strong crop establishment and faster growth, seed priming develops as a cornerstone in modern agriculture, shaping sustainable agricultural practices. Investigate seed priming for higher production and more resilient crops.

Read Also


ICAR E-Course for B.Sc. Agriculture

ICAR E-Course for B.Sc. Horticulture

Keywords: seed priming, seed priming methods, seed priming meaning, seed priming definition, seed priming ppt, seed priming techniques, seed priming pdf, seed priming in Hindi, types of seed priming.

Share to Nearest and Dearest

New Batch

Agriculture ug exam