095 Vase Life of Cut Roses Grown in Coal Bottom Ash-amended Media: A Correlation with Tissue Calcium

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  • 1 Division of Plant and Soil Science, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26508-6108

The vase life of roses grown in coal bottom ash (CBA)-amended media was evaluated. CBA is enriched in calcium, a nutrient implicated in delaying senescence. Two rose cultivars, Cara Mia and Dakota, were grown (from started eye plants) in four media: a 50% CBA medium and a peat:vermiculite medium amended with calcitic and dolomitic lime (1:1) were used as “high calcium” media, whereas a 25% CBA medium and a peat:vermiculite medium amended with dolomitic lime only were used as “low calcium” media. Vase life of the freshly harvested roses was evaluated. Elemental analysis of the leaves showed that roses grown in the “high calcium” media had greater calcium in the leaf tissue as well as longer vase lives (12.6 and 13.5 days) when compared to those grown in the “low calcium” media (12.1 and 10.9 days). However, petal tissue Ca was not affected by media and was not correlated with vase life. Petal tissue calcium was ≈15 times lower than leaf tissue calcium. Calcium and magnesium increased in the petal tissue over the vase life of the senescing petals. A comparison of `Cara Mia' roses (vase life of 14 days) and `Dakota' roses (vase life of 8.5 days) showed that the longer-lived `Cara Mia' had lower leaf and petal calcium levels. Both varieties followed a similar kinetics of electrolyte leakage (total E.C. and K) during their respective vase lives.

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