Research investigating the relationship between physical environments and various aspects of quality of life have found that people who live or work near natural areas have improved health and increased levels of satisfaction at home, work, and with life in general. Research has also shown that workers who performed their job function in offices with windows or interior plants had higher job satisfaction. The purpose of the current study was to investigate the relationship between the use of green spaces and public gardens in the work place on mental well-being, overall quality of life, and job satisfaction. The sample for this study was drawn from participants who were on the contact list of public garden employees and volunteers for a winter in-service training hosted by the Smithsonian Gardens (Washington, DC). Participants were e-mailed asking for their participation in the survey. An incentive of winning a greenhouse tour was used to improve the response rate. A total of 105 usable surveys were received out of 423 invitations that were sent for a response rate of 24.8%. Participants were asked to respond to questions regarding their work environment, mental well-being, overall quality of life, and job satisfaction. Differences were identified based on whether the participant was a paid employee or unpaid worker. Based on time spent outdoors during the workday, the only difference within the overall group existed with regard to how frequently the participant ate outdoors and their reported mental well-being. On the quality of life questions, differences for the overall sample, the paid group, and the unpaid group were found for having window views of plants or nature. On the job satisfaction question, differences were identified in the overall sample and the paid group for having a window in their immediate office or workplace. Several variables did not identify any statistically significant difference, which might result from this sample being already largely connected to nature due to their employment or volunteer work within a public garden.
A.M. Shirazi and C.P. Dunn
The Expressway Partnership (a project of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce's Gateway Green Committee) is an urban landscape project that promises to change the face of the city's expressways. The Morton Arboretum's Urban Horticulture Research Lab., with the support of ComEd (Excelon Corp.), since 2001 has been selecting, planting, and evaluating various cultivars of trees, shrubs, and ground covers in a search for the most suitable and sustainable plantings for the expressway environment. About 470 trees and shrubs were planted plus more than 10,000 groundcovers. In May 2002 these plants were visually evaluated and ranked from 1–5 with one being in excellent condition and 5 being dead. The control plants planted at Urban Horticulture Research Nursery at the Morton Arboretum had 100% survival. The survival rates for groundcovers were: Euonymusfortunei (Virginia Creeper) and Hemerocallis×daylily (day lily) had 80% to 90% survival rates, respectively. Pachysandra terminalis (Japanese spurge) plants died due to either de-icing salt sensitivity, or poor weed control. Syringa pekinensis (Peking lilac), as well as four Syringa cultivars, `President Grevy', `Summer Charm', `Charles Joly', and `James Mcfarlane', had a 100% survival rate. Survival rates for other plants were: Malus sargentii (Sargent crabapple) 93%; Robinapseudoacacia (black locust) ∼93%; Malus cultivars ∼75%; and Pinusbanksiana (jack pine) 75%. Cornussericea (red-osier dogwood) covered with 3 inches of mulch had a significantly better survival rate (90% to 100%) than the mulch treatment (60% to 80%). The growth and performance of other trees and shrubs will be also reported. This research will ensure sustainable and esthetic urban expressway plantings, while enhancing Chicago's stature as a significant urban landmark.
David B. Headley, Nina Bassuk, and Robert G. Mower
1 Graduate Assistant. 2 Associate Professor and Director of the Urban Horticulture Institute. 3 Professor. We thank Pat Hammer and Ed Broadbent of Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, Pa., and Sabina Sulgrove of the American Ivy Society, Dayton
J. Roger Harris and Edward F. Gilman
Abbreviations: CER, carbon exchange rate; FC, fabric containers; FG, field grown; PC, plastic containers; Ψ leaf , leaf water potential. 1 Current address: Urban Horticulture Institute, 20 Plant Science Bldg., Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY 14853
Allen V. Barker
Urban Horticulture. Tina Marie Waliczek and Jayne M. Zajicek, editors. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Fla. $60.95. Hardback. 336 p. ISBN 978-1-4822-6099-1. With contributions from experts, including the editors, in research and practice in urban
Tim R. Pannkuk, Jacqueline A. Aitkenhead-Peterson, Kurt Steinke, James C. Thomas, David R. Chalmers, and Richard H. White
Effective landscape management practices in urban landscapes must include an awareness of nutrient removal from soil caused by leaching, and these practices should be those least damaging to freshwaters. Annual mean dissolved organic carbon (DOC), dissolved organic nitrogen (DON), nitrate-N, ammonium-N, soluble phosphate, and bicarbonate concentrations and fluxes were quantified in leachate from landscapes planted with different urban horticultural types. Plot vegetation consisted of either a single species or mixed species. The experiment was conducted at two sites in Texas with significantly different irrigation water chemistry. At the two sites, plant species had a significant effect on PO4 3--P flux, and irrigation chemistry had a significant effect on all nutrient fluxes. There was an interaction between plant species and irrigation chemistry for PO4 3--P flux (P < 0.05) only. The relationship between bicarbonate and DOC flux at sites was stronger and significant (0.92; P < 0.05) at the site irrigated with Na-HCO3 municipal tap water than at the site irrigated with Ca-HCO3 municipal tap water (R 2 = 0.76, P = 0.05). Type of irrigation water chemistry may result in lower plant water uptake resulting in increased nutrients lost to leachate.
Miles Schwartz Sax, Nina Bassuk, and Mark Bridgen
A tissue culture system was developed to clonally propagate a series of hybrid white oaks (Quercus L.) at the plant breeding program of the Urban Horticulture Institute (UHI), Cornell University. From 2014 through 2018, 34 genotypes and 1966 individual explants of UHI hybrid white oaks were trialed to determine their capacity to establish, multiply, and root in a tissue culture environment. UHI hybrid oak genotypes were selected based on their known tolerance to stresses common in the urban environment (drought, alkaline soils, pests, and diseases) and their ornamental qualities. Individual genotype was the single largest factor affecting successful establishment, multiplication, stabilization, and rooting of hybrid oaks in vitro. Thirteen clones of hybrid oaks were identified as having the capacity to stabilize and grow continuously in the multiplication phase. Multiplication efficiency rates were dependent on individual genotype. Stabilized genotypes showed the capacity to be re-established during successive years. The tissue culture process was simplified and refined to make the protocols less labor intensive for laboratory technicians using these methods. This study presents a preliminary and promising method for the clonal propagation of oak species and provides a path for cultivar development for plants belonging to the genus Quercus.
Fernanda Trientini and Paul R. Fisher
Small-scale hydroponics is a growing urban horticulture trend, but nutrient solution management remains a challenge for small growers. The objective was to investigate the potential to use controlled-release fertilizer (CRF) to simplify nutrient management in small-scale hydroponic systems. Three experiments were conducted with the goal of a single fertilizer application during the crop cycle of basil (Ocimum basilicum). Nutrient release curves were quantified by adding prills to water and measuring nutrient content weekly in the solution for CRF products without plants. In all seven products tested (Osmocote Bloom 2–3M, Osmocote Plus 3–4M, E-Max Calcium Nitrate 2–3M, Agrocote MAP 3–4M, E-Max Keiserite 3–4M, E-Max K-Mag 2–3M, and Agrocote SOP 3–4M) an initial rapid release was followed by a plateau, but release rates differed between products varying from 100% (MgSO4) to 60% release [(NH4).(H2PO4)] over an 11-week evaluation period. Total nutrient content in two commercial N–P–K CRF products (3–4 months 15N–3P–10K and 2–3 months 12N–3.1P–14.9K) provided lower Ca and Mg compared with a typical hydroponic solution based on water-soluble fertilizer (WSF). A subsequent experiment evaluated plant growth response using the same two commercial CRF products (single application) or a WSF (replaced weekly) in growth chamber environment. Plants grown for 4 weeks under CRF treatments yielded less than half the shoot fresh weight of plants grown with WSF and exhibited symptoms of Ca deficiency and micronutrient toxicity (confirmed with tissue analysis). Electrical conductivity (EC) of CRF solutions increased over time indicating excess dose compared with plant uptake, reaching a maximum of 5.4 dS·m−1. Nutrient release curves from the first experiment were then used to estimate product release and create a single-application nutritional program based on a customized “Blend” developed from CRF macronutrients plus WSF micronutrients. Plants were grown hydroponically with two dosages of Blend (1X and 2X) and compared with a commercial WSF with weekly replacement of solution. Blend 2X and WSF treatments had similar shoot fresh weight (241 and 244 g/four plants, respectively) with healthy plant appearance and tissue nutrient levels generally within published survey ranges for basil. Commercial CRF products designed for soil or container production were unsuitable for hydroponics, but acceptable plant performance with the customized CRF Blend demonstrated proof-of-concept for a single CRF application.
Mary Hockenberry Meyer
. Meyer has been a tireless advocate and supporter for HortTechnology, serving as urban horticulture associate editor (1996–2002), and member of the Editorial Board (2002–10). She has been a reviewer for countless articles for the society’s journals
a prolific researcher, educator, and author. He was a speaker at many conferences in Australia and overseas, especially on his specialist topics of urban horticulture, green space sustainability, and sports grass/turf. Fondly admired and loved by his