ALTERNATIVES IN MEDIA: FINDING RENEWABLE SUBSTITUTES FOR PEATMOSS

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  • 1 Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Oklahoma State University, 360 Ag Hall, Stillwater, OK 74078

WetEarth, a processed recycled newspaper product, was used in combination with pine bark, sand, and vermiculite as a growing medium for rose of Sharon and forsythia. Rose of Sharon was taller and had more leaves; more leaf area per plant; and greater leaf, stem, and root dry weights in all media containing recycled paper compared to plants grown in a medium consisting of 3 pine bark: 1 peat moss: 1 sand (by volume) (control). Forsythia grown in the control media were taller than those grown in any medium containing recycled newspaper. There was no difference in number of leaves per plant or leaf area of forsythia, regardless of growing medium. Physical and chemical properties of each medium also were investigated. All media containing recycled newspaper had a higher pH, porosity, and air space than the control medium.

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