The content of indoleacetic acid (IAA) was determined in dry and germinating seeds of French bean (Phaseolus vulgaris), sugar maize (Zea mays), and Scots pine (Pinus silvestris). IAA was found in both the dry and the soaked seeds of the three species examined. The amount of IAA per gram fresh weight was extremely different in the three species whereas the variation between different harvests of the same species was small. Maize contained the highest level of IAA and bean the smallest. The time of imbibition was of decisive importance for the level of IAA. In all three species the content of IAA increased considerably during the initial 4 hours of swelling. The highest level of IAA was found in seeds that had swelled for 24 to 48 hours, during which period the radicles began to emerge from the seed coat. Later, during the period of rapid root growth, the content of IAA declined.