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Shravan Dasoju, Michael R. Evans, and Brian E. Whipker

Paclobutrazol drench applications of 0, 2, and 4 mg a.i./pot were applied to `Pacino' potted sunflowers (Helianthus annuus L.) and `Red Pigmy' tuberous rooted dahlias (Dahlia variabilis Willd.) grown in substrates containing 50%, 60%, 70%, or 80% (by volume) sphagnum peat or coir, with the remainder being perlite, to study the efficacy of paclobutrazol (Bonzi). Potted sunflower plant height differed significantly for peat- and coir-based substrates, with greater plant height being observed in coir-based substrates. Plant diameter was significantly greater at higher percentages of peat or coir in the substrate at 2 and 4 mg of paclobutrazol. Inflorescence diameter also was significantly decreased as paclobutrazol concentration increased. When the percent of height control from the untreated plants for potted sunflower was compared between coir and peat-based substrates, the percent height reduction was similar for peat- and coir-based substrates at 2 mg of paclobutrazol and height control was greater at 4 mg of paclobutrazol in coir-based substrates. The differences in plant growth observed in peat- and coir-based substrates can be attributed to differences in physical properties of these substrates. Dahlia plant height, diameter, and number of days until anthesis were not influenced by substrate type or percentage. However, dahlia growth was significantly reduced as paclobutrazol concentration increased. Coir-based substrates did not reduce the activity of paclobutrazol drenches compared to peat-based substrates, although to compensate for the greater amount of plant growth in coir-based substrates, paclobutrazol concentrations may need to be increased slightly to achieve a similar plant height as with peat-based substrates.

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Tekalign Tsegaw, S. Hammes, and J. Robbertse

Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) treatment with paclobutrazol resulted in short and compact plants having dark green and thicker leaves, and wider stem and root diameters. Investigating the underlying anatomical modifications in response to the treatment was the objective of the study. Plants of potato cultivar BP 1 were treated with 0, 45.0, 67.5, and 90.0 mg paclobutrazol per plant as a foliar spray. A month after treatment leaf, stem and root materials were taken from the control and plants treated with 67.5 mg paclobutrazol, and histological observations were made using light microscope. Leaves of treated plants showed an increased chlorophyll a and b contents, thicker epicuticular wax layer, elongated and thicker epidermal, palisade and spongy mesophyll cells. paclobutrazol increased stem diameter by about 58% due to induction of thicker cortex, larger vascular bundles, and wider pith diameter associated with larger pith cells. Widening the cortex and the induction of more secondary xylem vessels in response to paclobutrazol treatment increased the root diameter by about 52%. Paclobutrazol treatment remarkably increased the accumulation of starch granules in the stem pith cells and cortical cells of the stem and root. This study is similar to the other relevant studies in reporting an increased leaf thickness, and stem and root diameters; however, most of the underlying anatomical modifications described above have not been reported previously.

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Claudio C. Pasian and Daniel K. Struve

The effectiveness of a paclobutrazol/paint mix in controlling growth of poinsettia plants (Euphorbia pulcherrima) cultivars Freedom Red and Angelica Red was evaluated. Plants were grown in containers whose interior walls were coated with a flat latex impregnated with varying concentrations of paclobutrazol: 0, 5, 20, 80, 100, 150, 200, and 300 mg·L–1 (0. 0.032, 0.128. 0.512, 0.64, 0.96, 1.28, and 1.92 mg a.i. per container, respectively). As a comparison, one treatment consisted of plants drenched with 118 ml/container of a paclobutrazol solution at 3 mg·L–1.

Plants grown in containers with the paint–paclobutrazol mix were shorter than the control plants. Treatments involving concentrations of 100 mg·L–1 or more (even as much as doubled or tripled) did not produce proportionately shorter plants. Root dry weights of plants in all treatments were not significantly different. However, the length of roots touching the internal surface of the container decreased with increasing growth regulator concentrations. This may help explain why doubling concentrations of growth regulator-in-paint does not produce proportionately shorter plants: roots start absorbing the growth regulator as soon as they touch the wall of the container. As a consequence, all root elongation is reduced, resulting in less root-growth regulator contact and less growth regulator uptake. More measurements of root length and root area are required in order to proof this hypothesis. When paclobutrazol concentrations were higher than 100 mg·L–1, some bracts showed evidence of “crinkling.”

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Gary L. McDaniel

Suppression of scape elongation by paclobutrazol and ancymidol of potted `Paul Richter' tulips (Tulipa gesneriana, L.) under greenhouse and low light postharvest environments were compared. Soil” drench applications of paclobutrazol at 0.25 or 0.50 mg/15-cm pot were as effective as ancymidol at 0.50 or 0.75 mg/pot in limiting scape lengths at colored bud stage and at senescence. Paclobutrazol pre-plant bulb soaks at 2.5 or 5.0 mg·liter-1 prevented excessive scape elongation during low light exposure, whereas ancymidol bulb soaks were ineffective. Neither plant growth regulator reduced flower size or affected petal color. Paclobutrazol applied as a soil drench or as a bulb soak increased days required up colored bud stage up to 4 days, whereas neither chemical affected post-greenhouse, life of tulips. Chemical names used: (R*, R*)-(±)-β-[(4-chlorophenyl) methyl]-α-(1,1-dimethyl)-1H-1,2,4-triazol-1-ethanol (paclobutrazol) and α-cyclopropyl-α-(4-methoxyphenyl)-5-pyrimidinemethanol (ancymidol).

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David A. Gilbertz

Spray applications of 15 or 30 mg uniconazole or 30 or 60 mg paclobutrazol/liter (20 ml/1.5-liter pot) were sprayed 0, 2, or 4 weeks after pinching of Dendranthema × grandiflorum (Ramat.) Kitamura `Bright Golden Anne' plants. Plants were shorter the earlier growth regulators were applied. Plants were more responsive to uniconazole, requiring paclobutrazol at up to four times the uniconazole concentration to achieve the same height control. Time to flowering was also lengthened the earlier applications were made, up to 3 days compared to nontreated plants. Flower diameter was only minimally affected by the treatments. Chemical names used (2RS,3RS)-1-(4-chlorophenyl)-2-1,1-dimethylethyl)-(1H-1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)pentan-3-ol(-paclobutrazol);(E)-l(p-chlorophenyl) -4,4-dimethyl-2-(1,2,4-triazol-1-yl-1-penten-3-ol) (uniconazole).

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James C. Sellmer, Craig R. Adkins, Ingram McCall, and Brian E. Whipker

Plant growth retardant (PGR) substrate drenches (in mg a.i per pot.) of ancymidol at 0.25, 0.5, 1, 2, or 4; paclobutrazol at 1, 2, 4, 8, or 16; and uniconazole at 0.25, 0.5, 1, 2, or 4 (28,350 mg = 1.0 oz) were applied to pampas grass (Cortaderia selloana). Control of height growth during greenhouse forcing and the residual effects on plant growth in the landscape were evaluated. During greenhouse forcing, plant height exhibited a quadratic dose response to paclobutrazol and uniconazole, while ancymidol treated plants exhibited a linear response to increasing dose. All rates of uniconazole resulted in plant heights which were 56% to 75% shorter than the nontreated control, whereas paclobutrazol and ancymidol treatments resulted in 6% to 64% and 5% to 29% shorter plants, respectively. Severe height retardation was evident with {XgtequalX}2 mg uniconazole. When the plants were transplanted and grown in the landscape (24 weeks after the PGR application), all plants treated with ancymidol, paclobutrazol, and {XltequalX}0.5 mg uniconazole exhibited heights similar to the nontreated control, suggesting no residual effects of the PGR for these treatments. Only plants treated with uniconazole at {XgtequalX}1 mg remained shorter than the nontreated control in the landscape. These results demonstrate that plant growth regulators can be effectively and economically applied in the greenhouse production of pampas grass.

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James E. Barrett and Terril A. Nell

Impatiens L. wallerana Hook., Salvia splendens Sello ex Nees, Tagetes erecta L., and Petunia hybrida Vilm. plants in 610-cm3 pots were sprayed with either uniconazole or paclobutrazol at concentrations from 10 to 160 mg·liter-1. For all species, both chemicals reduced plant size compared with untreated control plants, and the effect increased with higher concentrations. Uniconazole produced smaller plants than did paclobutrazol at similar concentrations. For impatiens, salvia, and marigold, there was an interaction between chemical and concentration; the degree of difference between the effects of the chemicals was greater at higher concentrations. For these three species, uniconazole elicited a quadratic response and reached saturation within the concentrations used; however, these concentrations were still in the linear portion of the dose response curve for paclobutrazol. Chemical names used: (2RS,3RS)-1-(4-chlorophenyl)-2-(1,1-dimethylethyl)-(1H-1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)pentan-3-ol (paclobutrazol); (E)-(+)-(S)-1-(4-chlorophenyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2-(1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)-pent-1-ene-3-ol (uniconazole).

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Susan Lurie, Reuven Ronen, and Beny Aloni

Bell pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) plants were sprayed at full bloom with paclobutrazol (50 and 100 mg·liter–1), uniconazole (20 and 50 mg·liter–1), or mefluidide (20 and 50 mg·liter–1). Mature-green and red fruit were harvested 4 and 8 weeks after spraying, respectively. Paclobutrazol and uniconazole, but not mefluidide, affected plant growth and fruit morphology. All three growth regulators alleviated chilling injury that developed on green and red peppers after 28 days at 2C. Potassium leakage was lower from tissue disks, and weight loss less, from treated fruit than from control fruit. Ethylene and CO2 production at 20C were similar in control and paclobutrazol-treated fruit after 28 days at 2C. These results are consistent with previous findings that showed these growth regulators are able to increase tolerance to low temperatures in whole plants. Chemical names used: N-[2,4-dimethyl-5-trifluoromethyl sulfonyl amino phenyl acetamide] (mefluidide); (2RS, 3RS) 1-(4-chlorophenyl)-4,4 dimethyl-2-(1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)-pentan-3-ol (paclobutrazol); (E)-1-(4-chlorophenyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2-(1,2,4 triazol-1-yl)-pentan-3-ol (uniconazole).

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Patrick E. McCullough, Haibo Liu, and Lambert B. McCarty

Plant growth regulators (PGRs) are often applied in combinations to reduce turf clippings, enhance turf quality, and suppress Poa annua L.; however, effects of PGR combinations on putting green ball roll distances have not been reported. Two field experiments were conducted on an `L-93' creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera var. palustris Huds.) putting green in Clemson, S.C., to investigate effects of four PGRs with and without a subsequent application of ethephon at 3.8 kg·ha–1 a.i. 6 days after initial treatments. The PGRs initially applied included ethephon at 3.8 kg·ha–1 a.i., flurprimidol at 0.28 kg·ha–1 a.i., paclobutrazol at 0.28 kg·ha–1 a.i., and trinexapac-ethyl at 0.05 kg·ha–1 a.i.. Ball roll distances were enhanced 3% to 6% (4 to 8 cm) by exclusive flurprimidol, paclobutrazol, and trinexapac-ethyl treatments. The additional ethephon application reduced ball distances 2% to 9% (2 to 11 cm). Paclobutrazol and trinexapac-ethyl treated turf receiving the additional ethephon application had longer or similar ball roll distances to non-PGR treated turf. The additional ethephon treatment reduced turf quality to unacceptable levels 1 and 2 weeks after applications. However, bentgrass treated previously with trinexapac-ethyl and paclobutrazol had 8 to 16% higher visual quality following the additional ethephon treatment relative to non-PGR treated turf receiving the subsequent ethephon application. Overall, ethephon may have deleterious effects on monostand creeping bentgrass putting green quality and ball roll distances; however, applying ethephon with GA inhibitors could mitigate these adverse effects. Chemical names used: [4-(cyclopropyl-[α]-hydroxymethylene)-3,5-dioxo-cyclohexane carboxylic acid ethyl ester] (trinexapac-ethyl); {α-(1-methylethyl)-α-[4-(trifluoro-methoxy) phenyl] 5-pyrimidine-methanol} (flurprimidol); (+/-)–(R*,R*)-β-[(4-chlorophenyl) methyl]-α-(1, 1-dimethyl)-1H-1,2,4,-triazole-1-ethanol (paclobutrazol); [(2-chloroethyl)phosphonic acid] (ethephon).

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Arvazena E. Clardy, Sabrina L. Shaw, and William F. Hayslett

Red Delano chrysanthemum cuttings were transplanted into 15 cm pots. Fertilizer treatments were started immediately. Initial fertilizer rates were 14.8 cc of the designated formulation per pot. Two formulations of fertilizer, 20-20-20 and 5-50-17 NPK, were used in excessive rates to determine if it would override the effects of the growth inhibitors. Paclobutrazol, uniconizole, and daminozide were used to retard growth. Three rates-30, 60, and 120 ppm of paclobutrazol, and 10, 20, and 40 ppm of uniconizole and one rate of 25 % daminozide were foliar applied (two applications) on the plants. After two weeks the plants were treated with the growth retardants and an additional treatment of fertilizer were added at the rate of 29.6 cc per pot. Measurements taken were plant height, top fresh weight, root fresh weight, and root development. ANOVA was used to determine differences and interactions. Significant differences were noted in plant height and root development.