Accelerated aging predisposed seeds to imbibition injury. Slowing the rate of hydration prevented the loss of germinability due to imbibition injury. Germinability of accelerated aged seeds (50 hours) was increased from 10 to 90% by controlling the rate of imbibition. Slow hydration also prevented seed electrolyte leakage. This may indicate that cell membrane permeability or rupture was a major factor contributing to the loss of germinability after aging.