ESTABLISHMENT OF THYME (THYMUS VULGARIS L.) BY DIRECT SOWING OR TRANSPLANTING AT TWO DENSITIES

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  • 1 Centre for Horticultural Research, Université Laval, Ste-Foy, Québec G1K 7P4, Canada
  • 2 Bioplant Research Laboratories, Varennes, Québec, Canada
  • 3 Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Station, 430 Gouin Boulevard, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Québec J3B 3E6, Canada

Cultivation of thyme for medicinal purposes should result in high dry-matter yield and sufficient active principals concentrations. In this experiment two methods of crop establishment were compared: direct sowing (final plant density: 100,000 plants/ha) and planting at two densities: D-1 (100,000 plants/ha) and D-2 (166,000 plants/ha). The use of transplants promoted growth and resulted in yields three times higher than direct sowing (3340 vs. 1002 kg dry matter/ha). There were significant differences in biomass between the two densities evaluated. Plants under D-1 weighed 33 g dry matter/plant vs. 22 g dry matter/plant for D-2. Hence, dry-matter yield per hectare was not affected by planting density. Active principals concentrations were not affected by treatments. So far, it is recommended that cultivation of thyme under Quebec's conditions be based on transplanting at moderate (100,000 plants/ha) density.

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