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Anthony V. LeBude*, Barry Goldfarb, and Frank A. Blazich

Producing high quality rooted stem cuttings on a large scale requires precise management of the rooting environment. This study was conducted to investigate the effect of the rooting environment on adventitious root formation of stem cuttings of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.). Hardwood stem cuttings of loblolly pine were collected in Feb. 2002 from hedged stock plants and stored at 4 °C until setting in Apr. 2002. One hundred stem cuttings per plot in each of two replications received 45, 61, 73, 102, 147, or 310 mL·m-2 of mist delivered intermittently by a traveling gantry (boom) system. Mist frequency was similar for all treatments and was related inversely to relative humidity (RH) within the polyethylene covered greenhouse. Rooting tubs in each plot were filled with a substrate of fine silica sand, and substrate water potential was held constant using soil tensiometers that activated a subirrigation system. Cutting water potential was measured destructively on two cuttings per plot beginning at 0500 hr every 3 hh until 2300 hr (seven measurements) 7, 14, 21, or 28 days after setting. During rooting, leaf temperature and RH were recorded in each plot to calculate vapor pressure deficit (VPD). Cutting water potential and VPD were strongly related to mist application. Cutting water potential was also related to VPD. Rooting percentage had a linear and quadratic relationship with mean cutting water potential and VPD averaged between 1000 and 1800 HR. Eighty percent rooting occurred within a range of values for VPD. Data suggest that VPD can be used to manage the water deficit of stem cuttings of loblolly pine to increase rooting percentage. These results may be applicable to other species and to other rooting environments.

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L.T. Case, H.M. Mathers, and A.F. Senesac

Container production has increased rapidly in many parts of the U.S. over the past 15 years. Container production has been the fastest growing sector in the nursery industry and the growth is expected to continue. Weed growth in container-grown nursery stock is a particularly serious problem, because the nutrients, air, and water available are limited to the volume of the container. The extent of damage caused by weeds is often underestimated and effective control is essential. Various researchers have found that as little as one weed in a small (1 gal) pot affects the growth of a crop. However, even if weeds did not reduce growth, a container plant with weeds is a less marketable product than a weed-free product. Managing weeds in a container nursery involves eliminating weeds and preventing their spread in the nursery, and this usually requires chemical controls. However, chemical controls should never be the only management tools implemented. Maximizing cultural and mechanical controls through proper sanitation and hand weeding are two important means to prevent the spread and regeneration of troublesome weeds. Cultural controls include mulching, irrigation methods (subirrigation), and mix type. Nursery growers estimate that they spend $500 to $4000/acre of containers for manual removal of weeds, depending on weed species being removed. Economic losses due to weed infestations have been estimated at approximately $7000/acre. Reduction of this expense with improved weed control methodologies and understanding weed control would have a significant impact on the industry. Problems associated with herbicide use in container production include proper calibration, herbicide runoff concerns from plastic or gravel (especially when chemicals fall between containers) and the need for multiple applications. As with other crops, off-site movement of pesticides through herbicide leaching, runoff, spray drift, and non-uniformity of application are concerns facing nursery growers. This article reviews some current weed control methods, problems associated with these methods, and possible strategies that could be useful for container nursery growers.

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Theo J. Blom and Wayne Brown

Four sterilants-bactericides (Physan-20, Fixed Copper, Phyton-27, and Virkon) were compared as preplanting dips of Zantedeschia elliottiana Engl. W. Wats `Yellow' (a susceptible cultivar) rhizomes to reduce plant losses due to latent field-infected Erwinia carotovora soft rot during greenhouse forcing as a flowering potted plant. All sterilant solutions were prepared in combination with Promalin, a commercially available product containing gibberellic acid (GA) used to enhance flowering. An additional group of rhizomes was inoculated with E. carotovora sp. as a preplanting dip in combination with the GA treatment but were not treated with a bactericide. Rhizomes were wounded by making two cuts on the distal part of the rhizome or left unwounded before application of the preplant dip treatments. After potting, plants were fertilized with either a high (3.0 mmol·L-1) or a low (1.0 mmol·L-1) calcium nutrient solution through subirrigation. More than 90% of the inoculated rhizomes collapsed within 5 weeks after potting due to bacterial soft rot. With the uninoculated rhizomes, the copper-based compounds (Fixed Copper or Phyton-27) provided better control of bacterial soft rot than either Physan-20 or Virkon only during the first 6 weeks of forcing. During the remainder of the forcing period, there were no differences in weekly losses of rhizomes with the four sterilants. Confirmation of Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora (Jones) Bergey et al. as the causal organism was made throughout the experiment. Incisions on the rhizome before planting or calcium nutrition during forcing did not have any significant effect on disease severity. Rhizomes treated with solutions of the copper-based compounds produced 0.5 flowers less per rhizome than either Physan-20 or Virkon. High calcium fertilization resulted in an increase of 0.5 flowers per plant compared to low calcium nutrition.

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Myung Min Oh, Young Yeol Cho, Kee Sung Kim, and Jung Eek Son

Subirrigation, such as the ebb-and-flow culture (EBB) system, is a popular method in containerized plant production for controlling the application of fertilizer, water, and pesticides, and for improving production efficiency ( Dole et al., 1994

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Subirrigation in the Greenhouse Industry Subirrigation promotes high-quality plant production with minimal environmental impact since it reuses the nutrient solution. Most subirrigation systems apply the water to waterproof ebb-and-flow benches or

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Craig D. Stanley and Gurpal Toor

reduce the potential for water and nutrient use efficiency ( Smajstrla et al., 2002c ). Irrigation methods for horticultural crop production in Florida consist of subirrigation (seepage) using water table management, drip irrigation, microsprinkler, and

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Daniel Leskovar and Yahia Othman

media in the cells of the tray ( Liu et al., 2012 ) and reduce transplant quality. Since there is little runoff from the growing medium when FL or subirrigation is used, a recommended fertilizer guideline is to reduce fertilizer (20N–10P–20K

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Not Effect Bee Balm Growth Paclobutrazol, uniconazole, or flurprimidol were applied to bee balm at several concentrations as a substrate drench or through subirrigation. Pepin and Cole (p. 313) found that substrate drench applications were more

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containers, but little research has been conducted on long-term crops grown in these containers in subirrigation systems. Beeks and Evans (p. 173) found that cyclamen plants could be successfully grown in a subirrigation system by switching from plastic

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Roland Ebel

capillarity conducts water from the canals to the crops in an “integrated” sub-irrigation system ( Renard et al., 2012 ). Only very particular soil and plant properties allow natural sub-irrigation. The width and height of the wetland fields as well as the