Petunia `Red Flash' seedlings were grown under HPS (175 μmol m-2 s-1) photoperiod treatments of 10, 12, 14 or 16 hr at 20C soil temperature in a shaded glasshouse where the maximum peak PPF was reduced to 150 μmolm-2s-1. Seedling were transplanted after they had unfolded a specific number of leaves and grown under natural days or placed under photoperiod treatments which consisted of an 8 hr natural day with incandescent day extension treatments of 1 to 6 hours.
A 16 hr HPS treatment decreased the days to transplant (DTT) by more than 4 days and reduced the days from transplant to flower (DTF) by more than 5 days. The total reduction in days from sowing to flower (DSTF) was at least 8 days. When compared to unlighted controls, the reduction in DSTF was 26 days. The longer the seedlings remained under the HPS treatments, the shorter the DTF and DSTF. Premature shifting of plants to natural days resulted in up to a 9 day delay in DSTF. At photoperiods greater than 13 hr, the number of nodes subtending the inflorescence becomes constant regardless of number of leaves at transplant.