Papaya(Caricapapaya) Transplant Growth and Quality as Affected by Nitrogen and a Soil-applied Seaweed Extract

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  • 1 University of Florida, Horticultural Sciences Department, Gainesville, FL, 32611-0690

Experiments were conducted to assess the effects of rate combinations of nitrogen (N) and a soil-applied biostimulant based on seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) extract (SSE) on the growth of papaya seedlings for transplant production. Seedlings were grown in 180-mL Styrofoam containers filled with a sphagnum/vermiculite/perlite growing medium. N (0 to 2 g per plant) and SSE (drench, 0 to 1 mL per plant) were applied at sowing and 15 days after emergence. N and SSE rates affected overall growth as well as time to attain adequate size for transplanting. In general, increasing N rates resulted in increased growth, and adding SSE enhanced N effects. In terms of increasing overall transplant growth and decreasing the time required from emergence to adequate transplanting size, the best results were found at the highest N and SSE rates.

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