Sample processing of radish genetic resources

Contributors to this page: CAAS, China (Qiu Yang, Li Xixiang); Bioversity International, Italy (Imke Thormann, Ehsan Dulloo); CGN, Netherlands (Noortje Bas); IPK, Germany (Andreas Börner, Ulrike Lohwasser); AVRDC, Taiwan (Andreas Ebert); USDA, USA (Larry Robertson); NBPGR, India (Chitra Pandey); SASA, UK (George Campbell); University of Warwick, UK (Charlotte Allender).

Seed cleaning
Seed drying
Seed moisture content

Seed cleaning

Seed cleaning is required to remove non-seed material and unhealthy and undersized seeds after harvesting, before storage, in order to preserve high quality samples.

Visual inspection of seeds

This is a quality control measure that must be done after harvesting the seeds to examine seeds for damage.


Recording information during seed cleaning

Record the seed-cleaning procedures using the following descriptors:

Back to top

 Seed drying

NGB-NBPGR walk-in seed drying room (photo: NBPGR)

NGB-NBPGR seed drying cabinet (photo: NBPGR)


Drying time

Moisture content before drying

Moisture content for storage

Recording information during seed drying

The following information should be recorded for each processing step:

Back to top

 Determination of seed moisture content


Sampling frequency

Sample size

Oven drying temperature

Recording information during seed moisture content

The following information should be recorded for each step:

Back to top

References and further reading

Demir I, Ozcoban M. 2007. Dry and ultra-dry storage of pepper, aubergine, winter squash, summer squash, bean, cowpea, okra, onion, leek, cabbage, radish, lettuce and melon seeds at -20°C and 20°C over five years. Seed Science and Technology. 35(1):165-175.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Roberts EH. 1988. A low-moisture-content limit to logarithmic relations between seed moisture content and longevity. Annals of Botany 61, 405-408.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Roberts EH. 1989. A comparison of the low-moisture-content limit to the logarithmic relation between seed moisture and longevity in twelve species. Annals of Botany 63, 601-611.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Roberts EH, Tao KL. 1990. Low-moisture-content limits to relations between seed longevity and moisture. Annals of Botany 65, 493-504.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Roberts EH. 1991. Seed moisture content, storage, viability and vigour (correspondence). Seed Science Research 1, 275-277.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Martin MC, Perez Garcia F, Goméz-Campo C. 1993. The long-term storage of seeds of seventeen crucifers at very low moisture contents. Plant Varieties and Seeds 6, 75-81.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Roberts EH. 1995. Survival and vigour of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) and sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) seeds stored at low and very low moisture contents. Annals of Botany 76, 521-534.

Ellis RH, Hong TD, Astley D, Pinnegar AE, Kraak HL. 1996. Survival of dry and ultra-dry seeds of carrot, groundnut, lettuce, oilseed rape, and onion during five years; hermetic storage at two temperatures. Seed Science and Technology 24, 347-358.

FAO/IPGRI. 1994. Genebank standards. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome and International Plant Genetic Resources Institute, Rome. Available in English, Spanish, French and Arabic.

ISTA. 2005. International Rules for Seed Testing. Edition 2005. International Seed Testing Association, Bassersdorf, Switzerland.

Kong XH, Zhang HY. 1998. The effect of ultra-dry methods and storage on vegetable seeds. In: Black M, Walters C, Cohn MA, editors. Ultra-Dry Seed Storage. Seed Science Research Series, vol 8:1-74 supplement 1. CABI Publishing, UK and International Plant Genetic Resources Institute IPGRI, Rome, Italy. HTML version available from[showUid]=2271

Pérez-García F, González-Benito ME, Gómez-Campo C. 2008. Germination of fourteen endemic species from the Iberian Peninsula, Canary and Balearic Islands after 32-34 years of storage at low temperature and very low water content. Seed Science and Technology 36 (2) : 407-422

Rao NK, Hanson J, Dulloo ME, Ghosh K, Nowel D, Larinde M. 2006. Manual of seed handling in genebanks. Handbooks for Genebanks No. 8. Bioversity International, Rome, Italy. Available in English (1.5 MB),  Spanish (1.4 MB) and French (1.9 MB).

Vertucci CW, Roos EE. 1990. Theoretical basis of protocols for seed storage. Plant Physiology 94, 1019-1023. Available from: Date accessed: 4 June 2010.

Vertucci CW, Roos EE. 1991. Seed moisture content, storage, viability and vigour: response (correspondence). Seed Science Research 1, 277-279.

Vertucci CW, Roos EE. 1993a. Theoretical basis of protocols for seed storage. II. The influence of temperature on optimal moisture levels. Seed Science Research 3, 201-213. Available from: Date accessed: 4 June 2010.

Vertucci CW, Roos EE. 1993b. Seed storage, temperature and relative humidity: response (correspondence). Seed Science Research 3, 215-216.

Back to top

The Genebanks

The 11 CGIAR genebanks currently conserve 730,000 of cereals and grain legumes, forage crops, tree species, root and tuber crops, bananas and crop wild relatives.