Effect of Temperature on Time to Flower of Coreopsis grandiflora, Chrysanthemum superbum, Gaillardia grandiflora, and Rudbeckia fulgida

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  • 1 Dept. of Horticulture, Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI 48824-1325

Scheduling crops to flower for specific dates requires a knowledge of the relationship between temperature and time to flower. Our objective was to determine the relationship between temperature and time to flower of four herbaceous perennials. Field-grown, bare-root Coreopsis grandiflora `Sunray', Gaillardia grandiflora `Goblin', Rudbeckia fulgida `Goldsturm', and tissue culture-propagated Chrysanthemum superbum `Snow Cap' were exposed to 5C for 10 weeks. They were grown at 15, 18, 21, 24 or 27C under 4-h night interruption lighting. Time to visible bud (VB) and first flower (FLW) were recorded. Days to VB, days to FLW, and days from VB to FLW decreased as temperature increased. Time to flower at 15C was 70, 64, 96, and 54 days and 24, 39, 48, and 36 days at 27C for Coreopsis, Gaillardia, Rudbeckia, and Chrysanthemum, respectively. The 27C temperature apparently caused devernalization on Coreopsis because only 40% of the plants flowered. The effects of temperature on flower size, flower bud number, and plant height also are presented.

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