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Open access

Austin Brown, James Brosnan, Nicholas Basinger, Wesley Porter, and Gerald Henry

Dallisgrass (Paspalum dilatatum Poir.) control with postemergence herbicides is inefficient and inconsistent from year to year. Control with acetolactate synthase (ALS)-inhibiting herbicides may be enhanced through root absorption, but herbicide movement through dense turfgrass canopies may be difficult. The objectives of this research were to evaluate the influence of verticutting on the postemergence control of dallisgrass and the presence of ALS-inhibiting herbicides within the soil profile. Long-term dallisgrass control [17 weeks after initial treatment (WAIT)] was enhanced in response to verticutting at one of two locations. This may be attributed to differences in turfgrass management (mowing height) before trial initiation that impacted dallisgrass carbohydrate content and herbicide absorption. However, dallisgrass control with certain herbicides was enhanced at the second location in response to verticutting at earlier rating dates. Thiencarbazone + foramsulfuron + halosulfuron (TFH) and trifloxysulfuron at 112 g·ha−1 a.i. and carrier volume of 1628 L·ha−1 (TRI High CV) following mowing + verticutting resulted in the greatest long-term control 17 WAIT at one of two trial locations, 86% and 85%, respectively. Greenhouse experiments confirmed that mowing + verticutting dallisgrass before treatment followed by irrigation led to an increase in herbicide presence within the soil profile, regardless of herbicide. Presence of TFH went from 6.4 to 8.2 mm, trifloxysulfuron at 28 g·ha−1 a.i. and carrier volume of 407 L·ha−1 went from 6.7 to 8.5 mm, and TRI High CV went from 8.6 to 11.8 mm.

Open access

Shih-wen Lin, Tsung-han Lin, Cynthia Kung Man Yee, Joyce Chen, Yen-wei Wang, Manoj Kumar Nalla, and Derek W. Barchenger

High temperature stress is a major limiting factor for pepper productivity, which will continue to be a problem under climate change scenarios. Developing heat tolerant cultivars is critical for sustained pepper production, especially in tropical and subtropical regions. In fruiting crops, like pepper, reproductive tissues, especially pollen, are the most sensitive to high temperature stress. Typically, pollen viability and germination are assessed through staining and microscopy, which is tedious and potentially inaccurate. To increase efficiency in assessing pollen traits of pepper, the use of impedance flow cytometry (IFC) has been proposed. We conducted three independent experiments to determine the most effective methodology to use IFC for evaluating pollen traits for heat tolerance in pepper. Seven floral developmental stages were evaluated, and stages 3, 4, and 5 were found to best combine high pollen concentration and activity. Flowers in development stages 3, 4, or 5 were then heat treated at 41, 44, 47, 50, and 55 °C or not heat treated (control). The critical temperature to assess heat tolerance using IFC was found to be 50 °C, with a reduction in pollen activity and concentration occurring at temperatures greater than 47 °C. Twenty-one entries of pepper were then accessed for pollen traits using the staining and IFC methods over 2 months, April (cooler) and June (hotter). Growing environment was found to be the greatest contributor to variability for nearly all pollen traits assessed, with performance during June nearly always being lower. PBC 507 and PBC 831 were identified as being new sources of heat tolerance, based on using IFC for assessing pollen. Pollen viability determined by staining and pollen activity determined using IFC were significantly positively correlated, indicating that IFC is an efficient and accurate method to assess pollen traits in pepper. This work provides a basis for further research in this area and supports more efficient breeding of heat-tolerant cultivars.

Open access

Shengrui Yao

The increased popularity of jujube (Ziziphus jujuba) combined with the difficulty of grafting have limited supplies of grafted trees in the United States. From 2011 to 2020, grafting was practiced for cultivar amplification after importation and cultivar trials in frost-prone northern New Mexico. Grafting success was related to not only grafting techniques but also climate factors. Bark grafting, whip/tongue grafting, and cleft grafting were commonly used in nurseries. Low temperatures had a critical role in jujube grafting success in marginal regions and were more important than the grafting technique. If frost occurs before or near the leafing time, then grafting should be delayed until the rootstocks are determined to be healthy and alive. If frost occurs after grafting, then grafting failure and/or thin and small plant percentages increased. If only branchlets appear after grafting, then pinching branchlets could stimulate new shoot growth.

Open access

Mary Vargo and James E. Faust

The effect of average daily temperature (ADT) on flower bud development and subsequent time to flower was investigated on hybrid impatiens (Impatiens ×hybrida) cultivars Compact Electric Orange, Compact Hot Coral, and Compact Orchid Blush. Plants with a visible flower bud measuring 2 mm in width were placed in one of the four greenhouses with temperature setpoints ranging from 16 to 28 °C. Flower bud width was measured every 3 days in each ADT treatment until flowering. The subsequent days to flower (DTF) from the onset of a visible bud decreased from 36 to 27 days as the ADT increased from 17 to 28 °C. The DTF from visible bud varied by <3 days among the three cultivars across all temperatures; therefore, cultivar data were pooled to create a stronger prediction model. A logistic formula was used to predict the remaining DTF as a function of flower bud width and ADT. The model accurately described the effect of bud width and ADT on flowering time within ±3 days for 87% of the actual DTF across all three cultivars. The resulting flower development model provides greenhouse growers with a guide for manipulating temperature to produce flowering plants for specific market dates based on flower bud width measurements.

Open access

Wei-Ling Chen and Chun-Jung Shen

Asparagus is a potential greenhouse crop, and its production is considerably affected by temperature and light, especially in the summer season. This study investigated the effects of the application of near-infrared (NIR)-reflective diffusion coating on a simple plastic greenhouse on microclimatic conditions, plant response, spear yield, and quality of the asparagus plant in central Taiwan. The results showed that NIR-reflective diffusion coating reduced the mean air temperature inside the greenhouse by 0.3 to 0.9 °C and leaf temperature by 2.3, 2.4, and 2.4 °C at a canopy height of 50, 100, and 50 cm, respectively. Although the accumulated daily light integral (DLI) transmitted in the coated greenhouse exhibited an 18.9% reduction compared with a 16.8% reduction in the noncoated greenhouse, a more uniform spatial light distribution was noted. Therefore, photosynthesis improved in the middle and bottom canopy, and plants could maintain a higher transpiration rate, thus resulting in atmospheric cooling. The average spear yield increased by 31.4% in summer and by 10.1% during the following harvest with a lower crude fiber (CF) content and higher Ca as well as Mg contents. In addition, the number of newly emerged shoots increased by 48.8% after the removal of the mother stalk under coating. NIR-reflective diffusion coating can be used as an energy-saving method for enhancing cooling and improving light use efficiency, thus increasing asparagus production in a greenhouse in summer.

Open access

Yiping Zou, Qingguang Li, Donglin Zhang, Youwang Liang, Mingzhuo Hao, and Yujie Yang

The genus Ilex (Aquifoliaceae) consists of more than 500 dioecious tree and shrub species that distributed throughout the temperate and tropical regions (Dirr, 2010; Galle, 1997). Hollies are popular as landscape plants because of their ornamental attributes of various fruit colors (white, yellow, orange, red, black), leaf texture, color and variegation, habit, and their wide adaptation to environmental conditions (Bailes, 2006; Hume, 1953). The bright red color of holly fruits practically defines the plant in the minds of many gardeners. There are ≈2000 known Ilex cultivars with more

Open access

David G. Tork, Neil O. Anderson, Donald L. Wyse, and Kevin J. Betts

The genus Linum L. contains ≈200 primarily blue-flowered species, including several ornamentals, yet no reports exist regarding the cut flower potential of this genus. The objective of this study was to evaluate the cut flower potential of perennial flax cultivars (L. perenne L. ‘Blue Flax’ and ‘Sapphire’; Expt. 1, 2018) and accessions (L. austriacum L., L. lewisii Pursh., and L. perenne; Expt. 2, 2019), and record traits that will enable breeding and selection for improved cut flower performance. The mean vase life across both cultivars in Expt. 1 was 9.2 days. In Expt. 2, L. perenne had the longest average vase life (9.3 days), followed by L. austriacum (9.1 days) and L. lewisii (8.3 days). The floral preservative (Floralife 300) significantly increased vase life by an average of 1.7 days in Expt. 1, and 1.6 days in Expt. 2, and resulted in a significantly greater number of flowers (≈2x) in both experiments. Significant variation was observed among genotypes for most traits, including vase life (6.2 to 11.3 days) and number of flowers (1.3 to 10.5), highlighting the opportunities for improving the potential of cut flower perennial flax through breeding.

Open access

Shing-Shan Tsai and Yao-Chien Alex Chang

In the commercial production of phalaenopsis orchids, the cultivation time after deflasking is used to describe the plant age and maturity. Carbon-to-nitrogen (C/N) ratio is often used as an indicator of plant growth and flowering potential. High C/N ratios are considered to promote reproductive growth, and low C/N ratios are associated with the early vegetative growth or even inhibiting flowering. This study investigated how plant age and maturity affected flowering ability and flower quality of phalaenopsis and their relationship to C/N ratio. The plant materials of various ages were the purple, small-flowered Phalaenopsis Sogo Lotte ‘F2510’ and white, large-flowered P. Sogo Yukidian ‘V3’, which were 2 to 7 months and 10 to 20 months after deflasking, respectively. Plants were placed under 25/20 °C for 4 months to force flowering and investigate the flowering-related parameters. The leaf C/N ratio of both varieties increased in general with the increase of plant age. The spiking (flower-stalk emergence) rate of P. Sogo Lotte ‘F2510’ 2 months after deflasking was only 42%, which indicates that these plants were not completely out of their juvenile phase, whereas that of those 3 to 7 months after deflasking was 100%, indicating that plants had acquired full flowering ability. No linear correlation was found between the C/N ratio and days to spiking, to first visible bud, to first flower open, and to 90% flower opening in the white, large-flowered P. Sogo Yukidian ‘V3’. However, there was a positive correlation between the C/N ratio and inflorescence length, flower-stalk diameter, first flower diameter, and flower count. Thus, the C/N ratio is feasible to be used as an indicator for assessing the flowering quality in phalaenopsis.

Open access

Ed Stover, Stephen Mayo, Randall Driggers, and Robert C. Adair Jr.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture citrus scion breeding program is urgently working on developing huanglongbing (HLB; pathogen Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus)-tolerant cultivars with excellent fruit quality and productivity when HLB-affected. The slow process of assessing new citrus hybrids is a major impediment to delivery of these much-needed cultivars. We generate thousands of hybrids each year, germinate the seedlings, grow them for 2 years in the greenhouse, plant them at high density in a field where the disease HLB is abundant, grow them for 5 to 10 years, and make selections based on tree performance and fruit quality of these HLB-affected trees. Based on promising reports of accelerated citrus growth when grown in a metallized reflective mulch (MRM) system, we tested the hypothesis that the MRM system may accelerate growth and selection of new hybrid seedlings compared with conventional soil culture (CSC). In the MRM system, tree rows are covered with a layer of metallized plastic film and drip irrigation is installed beneath the plastic. In 2 years of analysis, tree canopy volume was significantly greater with MRM in 2020 (27% greater than CSC) but not in 2021, and MRM tree height was greater in 2021 (7% greater than CSC). Mortality was significantly greater with MRM in both 2020 and 2021(in 2021: 32% vs. 17% under CSC), and MRM trees had more chlorotic leaves. Because of staff limitations, plant debris and soil were not routinely cleared from MRM, thus diminishing any benefit from the reflective surface. Better maintenance might have resulted in more sustained evidence of MRM growth benefits. With the current resource availability, the MRM system does not appear to accelerate the assessment of hybrid seedling trees.