Date: Fall 2010
Are seeds alive and use energy?
Some seeds that you find are indeed dead and won't ever germinate.
They are like rocks.
Other seeds, sometimes thousands of years old are alive but dormant.
These dormant seeds don't start expending energy (such as beginning the
sprouting process) until conditions meet their germination needs, such as
the presence of water, the correct temperature range, or freeze cycles.
(Some seeds require the experience of freezing temperatures before they can
initiate their sprouting process).
Yes, seeds are alive and have stored energy:
Anthony R. Brach, PhD
Missouri Botanical Garden
c/o Harvard University Herbaria
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Update: June 2012