Growth of Barberry Liners in Media Amended with Noncomposted Recycled Waste

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  • 1 Tennessee State University, Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Research, Otis L. Floyd Nursery Research Center, McMinnville, TN 37110.
  • | 2 This research was funded by USDA/CSREES award #00-38814-9505.

One-year-old `Royal Burgundy' barberry (Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea) liners were potted in 1-gal (3.8-L) containers. Container media consisted of noncomposted recycled waste mixed at rates of 0% (control), 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% by volume with a (by volume) 3 pine bark: 2 peat: 1 sand media. Treatments were replicated eight times. Three grams (0.1 oz) of Osmocote 13-10-13 (13N-4.37P-10.8K) with micronutrients were topdressed on all containers. Media electrical conductivity (EC) and pH readings were recorded every fifteen days over the course of 5 months. Dry shoot, root, and total weights were recorded at the end of the project and a foliar analysis was performed for nutrient and metal content. Results indicate a general trend of higher EC with greater volumes of recycled waste. EC levels for the control and 25% treatment were within recommendations for the optimal plant growth of plants for the duration of the study. All treatments had an acceptable pH level for plant growth. Nitrogen levels were below the recommended foliar analysis sufficiency range. Levels of phosphorus and potassium were above or within the recommended foliar analysis sufficiency range. Metals were below or within recommended ranges for all treatments. Total dry weights revealed no statistical difference between the control, 25%, 50%, and 75% treatments. This study indicates that 25% noncomposted recycled waste could be used in container media for production of `Royal Burgundy' barberry.

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