Physically damage tree/shrub seeds before sowing: freshwater wetlands

How is the evidence assessed?
  • Effectiveness
  • Certainty
  • Harms

Study locations

Key messages

  • One study evaluated the effects – on trees/shrubs typical of freshwater wetlands – of physically damaging their seeds before sowing. The study was in a laboratory in the USA.








  • Germination/emergence (1 study): One replicated, controlled study in a laboratory in the USA found that cutting baldcypress Taxodium distichum seeds in half before sowing reduced their germination rate.
  • Growth (1 study): The same study found that cutting baldcypress Taxodium distichum seeds in half before sowing had no significant effect on the height of surviving seedlings, 30 days after germination.

About key messages

Key messages provide a descriptive index to studies we have found that test this intervention.

Studies are not directly comparable or of equal value. When making decisions based on this evidence, you should consider factors such as study size, study design, reported metrics and relevance of the study to your situation, rather than simply counting the number of studies that support a particular interpretation.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

  1. A replicated, controlled study in 2004 in a laboratory in Florida, USA (Liu et al. 2009) found that cutting baldcypress Taxodium distichum seeds in half reduced their germination rate but had no significant effect on seedling growth. Seeds that had been cut in half had a lower germination rate (20% germinated) than whole seeds (48% germinated). After 30 days, there was no significant difference in the height of seedlings that had grown from cut seeds (8.3 cm) or whole seeds (8.3 cm). Methods: In August 2004, sixty baldcypress seeds were planted into trays of growing medium. All seeds had been stored at 4°C for four months before the experiment started, and soaked in distilled water for 24 h before planting. Thirty seeds (three replicates of 10 seeds) had also been cut in half with scissors before soaking. Germinated seedlings were transplanted to individual pots of growing medium and measured after 30 days.

    Study and other actions tested
Please cite as:

Taylor N.G., Grillas P., Smith R.K. & Sutherland W.J. (2021) Marsh and Swamp Conservation: Global Evidence for the Effects of Interventions to Conserve Marsh and Swamp Vegetation. Conservation Evidence Series Synopses. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

Where has this evidence come from?

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Marsh and Swamp Conservation

This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:

Marsh and Swamp Conservation
Marsh and Swamp Conservation

Marsh and Swamp Conservation - Published 2021

Marsh and Swamp Synopsis

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