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Dewayne L. Ingram, Charles R. Hall, and Joshua Knight

Greenhouse production of floricultural and foliage plants in the United States is in the mature stage of its industry life cycle and increasingly hypercompetitive, with growers experiencing low profit margins despite having to incur substantial

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Adam Dale, Angela Sample, and Elizabeth King

Experiments were conducted to determine the chilling temperature and length of time required to break dormancy in red raspberry (Rubus idaeus L.). Five weeks of 7 °C with no light was sufficient to break dormancy in `Autumn Britten', `Nova', `Polana', and `Tulameen', while at least 8 weeks were needed for `Titan'. Comparisons with various chilling unit models allowed a model to be developed that could account for the observed chilling variation. In this model, each chilling hour was weighted as follows: below 5.6 °C = 1; 5.7 to 8.0 °C = 0.5; 8.1 to 11 °C = 0; 11.1 to 13 °C = -0.5; and >13 °C = -1. Plants of `Nova' and `Tulameen' chilled before flower initiation occurred, broke dormancy, and the resulting lateral branches remained vegetative. When the plants were fruited in the greenhouse, we were able to produce a second crop on the fruiting canes when the lateral branches that had fruited were removed. These experiments show that raspberries can be manipulated so that plants chilled in mid-September in the Northern Hemisphere can be induced to fruit by the beginning of January.

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Allan M. Armitage

Minimizing environmental stress in bedding plant and greenhouse and seedling development has occupied many researchers in academia and industry for many years. The dependence on single plant germination units (plugs) for bedding plant production and high value hybrid seed demand high rates of germination and successful seedling establishment. Pre-germinating or priming of seed is an important method of germination enhancement and methods and benefits of “priming” will be discussed. Environmental options to enhance seed germination of non-primed seed include control of vapor pressure deficit (VPD) and temperature.

Enhancement of seedling establishment through growth room and greenhouse technology includes the optimal use of CO2, temperature and light. Carbon dioxide fertilization on seedlings is receiving serious study and will be further elucidated.

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C. Elizabeth Succop and Steven E. Newman

Fresh-market basil is becoming a viable greenhouse commodity in Colorado. Marketing pressures and profit advantages also encourage the production of certified organic produce. The research objectives were to determine the length of time basil plants were productive in the greenhouse and to compare the production of fresh-market basil grown with three root zone systems and two fertilizer treatments. The three systems were hydroponic rockwool slab culture, hydroponic perlite raised bed culture, and hydroponic peat/perlite/compost bag culture. The two types of hydroponic fertilizer treatments were an inorganically formulated nutrient solution and an organic solution consisting of fermented poultry compost, hydrolized fish emulsion, and soluble kelp. The plants were harvested once per week and fresh weight was determined. During the 2nd and 3rd months of harvest, productivity from the plants treated with the organic fertilizer was greatest in the perlite system. However, productivity from the plants treated with the traditional fertilizer was greatest in the bag mix and rockwool systems.

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Fumiomi Takeda, Gene Lester, Craig Chandler, Penny Perkins-Veazie, and Ronald Prior

Fresh strawberries (Fragaria ×ananassa Duch) are readily available throughout the year with several new cultivars being successfully grown in diverse environmental conditions (e.g., field and greenhouse). Consumption of strawberries with higher nutritive values and antioxidant activity may contribute to improved human wellness. Phytonutrient contents and antioxidant activity was measured as oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) were assayed in berries (`Camarosa', `Diamante', and `Gaviota') sampled in January, February to March, and April to May from fields in Plant City, Fla., and Oxnard, Calif., and from a greenhouse in Kearneysville, WV. Strawberry cultivars varied in skin color, soluble solids, total phenolics, and anthocyanins, ascorbic acid, folic acid, and ORAC activity. Response to environment was cultivar dependent. All phytonutrient constituents were lower in `Diamante' berries compared to `Camarosa' and `Gaviota'. For all cultivars, berry ORAC activity declined as TSS increased, and ORAC activity was coincident with phenolic content. ORAC activity in berries fruit harvested from plants grown in a temperature-controlled greenhouse did not change during the January to May sampling period. For `Gaviota', ORAC activity in greenhouse-produced berries was the same as that of field-produced berries. Whereas greenhouse vs. field-gown `Camarosa' and `Diamante' berries ORAC was higher and lower respectively. These findings demonstrate that the environmental conditions in greenhouses in Kearneysville, W.Va., from winter to spring are adequate for `Camarosa' and `Gaviota' color development, but not for `Diamante' strawberries. Of the three cultivars, only `Camarosa' was highly productive (1.2 kg berries per plant), even in the greenhouse. Berries were high in ascorbic acid, folic acid, phenolic acid, anthocyanins, and ORAC activity.

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Christopher J. Currey, Kenneth G. McCabe, and Kellie J. Walters

.29 billion USD. Controlling growth of containerized annuals is desirable for several reasons, including producing a plant that is proportionately sized for containers ( Vernieri et al., 2003 ), as well as increasing planting densities during greenhouse

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Elisa Solis-Toapanta, Paul Fisher, and Celina Gómez

important consideration, as indoor gardeners tend to follow guidelines for commercial production, which are typically geared toward maximizing plant growth and yield. However, our results indicate that fertilizer recommendations for greenhouse production may

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Amanda Miller and Allan M. Armitage

The influence of temperature, irradiance, photoperiod and growth retardants on growth and flowering of Angelonia angustifolia Angel Mist series was evaluated. When temperature was increased from 15 to 30 °C, time to visible bud and time to flower decreased in a quadratic manner but total plant height and flower stem dry weight increased linearly. As irradiance increased, time to flower, time to visible bud, and height decreased quadratically. Changes in photoperiod had no effect on growth or flowering, suggesting that A. angustifolia is a day-neutral species with regards to height and flowering time. Daminozide, ancymidol, and paclobutrazol resulted in significant reduction of plant height compared with control plants but did not influence flowering time. Chemical names used: K-cyclopropyl-K-(4-methoxyphenyl)-5-pyrimidinemethanol (ancymidol); butanedioic acid mono (2,2-dimethylhydrazide) (daminozide); K-[(4-chlorophenyl)methyl]-K-(1,1-dimethyethyl)-1H-1,2,4-triazole-1-ethanol (paclobutrazol).

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Danise Coon, Derek W. Barchenger, and Paul W. Bosland

In the past, many ornamental chile pepper (Capsicum annuum) cultivars had to be pinched or sprayed with a uniconazole foliar application to achieve a dwarf, semidwarf, or compact plant habit. This study compares 12 currently available commercial ornamental pepper cultivars considered to be compact, and introduces 13 new ornamental pepper cultivars that do not require pinching or a uniconazole foliar spray to accomplish the desired dwarf or semidwarf plant habit. All 25 cultivars evaluated in this study were given either a dwarf or semidwarf classification based on industry standards. Of the 25 cultivars evaluated, 12 originate from and are commercially available and bred by various breeding programs, whereas 13 are new cultivars bred by the New Mexico State University Chile Pepper Breeding Program with the goal of having dwarf or semidwarf growth habits. Data indicate that the 13 new ornamental chile pepper cultivars did not require pinching or a chemical foliar spray to develop a dwarf or semidwarf plant habit and have the potential for commercial container production in the greenhouse and nursery industries.

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J.C. Rodriguez, D.J. Cantliffe, N.L. Shaw, and Z. Karchi

In the spring of 2001 and 2002, different combinations of media (coarse perlite, medium perlite, and pine bark) and containers (polyethylene bags and plastic pots) were used for hydroponic production of `Galia' muskmelons (Cucumis melo L.) to determine their effect on fruit yield and quality, and their influence on costs of production. Marketable yields obtained for `Gal-152' in the spring 2001 and 2002 were 25.5 kg·m–2 and 39.0 kg·m–2 respectively. When data were combined for 2001 and 2002, fruit yield and fruit quality were unaffected by any combination of media and container. Average soluble solids content was generally greater than 10° Brix. It was determined that the use of pine bark media and plastic pots instead of perlite and bags would save $18,200 per year (two crops)—a feasible option for reducing costs of producing `Galia' muskmelons in greenhouses using soilless culture without loss of yield and fruit quality.