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Abby B. Griffin, Amy N. Wright, Kenneth M. Tilt, and D. Joseph Eakes

, appeared to have good visual quality, and would be considered successfully established by the end of the second growing season. Precipitation rates were unusually high during the second year of establishment; it is likely that irrigation would normally have

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Qiang Liu, Youping Sun, Genhua Niu, James Altland, Lifei Chen, and Lijuan Jiang

concentrations among all the tested taxa with acceptable visual quality, indicating that H. macrophylla could tolerate high concentration of Na and Cl. This phenomenon was also observed in Texas betony ( Stachys coccinea ), which survived in EC 10 with the

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Kris M. Leader, Allen D. Owings, and Edward W. Bush

Lantana camara `New Gold', `Irene', and `Patriot Dove Wings' were planted in five pine bark-based media containing 0%, 12.5%, 25%, 37.5%, and 50% crumb rubber. Each medium was amended with 7.14 kg·m-3 dolomite lime, 0.892 kg·m-3 of Micromax, and 4.76 kg·m-3 of 17-6-12 Nutricote fertilizer. Height and visual quality ratings were taken at 4 and 8 weeks. Dry weights were taken when the experiment was terminated. There were no significant differences in height, visual quality, and dry weight of `New Gold' lantana for all crumb rubber rates. `Irene' grew taller and had higher visual quality rating in the 4th week with 12.5% and 25% crumb rubber. This trend continued in the 8th week with taller plants grown in 25% crumb rubber. However, there were no differences in plant quality. Dry weight of plants grown in 37.5% and 50% crumb rubber was reduced when compared to the control. There were no differences in growth or quality of `Patriot Dove Wings' at week four. At week eight a reduction in both height and visual quality occurred with 37.5% and 50% crumb rubber. Plant dry weights were also significantly reduced at >37.5% crumb rubber.

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Allen D. Owings

A greenhouse study was conducted to determine the influence of media containing varying volumetric proportions of composted cotton gin trash and pine bark on the growth of Coleus × hybridus 'Golden Bedder'. All media treatments were amended with 1.5 lbs/yd3 Micromax and 8 lbs/yd3 dolomite. Plant height, shoot dry weight, and visual quality ratings were determined six weeks after potting. Media composed of 100% cotton gin trash produced plants with significantly less height and shoot dry weight. Height inhibition was apparent by 3 weeks after potting. Coleus grown in media composed of 60-1002 pine bark had higher visual quality ratings than those grown in media having cotton gin trash as the primary constituent.

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S. Jiménez and M.T. Lao

The plant quality in function of the ratio nitrate:ammonium has been studied. The experiment was carried out in a recicling system in a Buried Solar Greenhouse. Dieffenbachia amoena `Tropic Snow' was cultivated in expanded clay substrate. The parameters considered to evaluate the quality have been plant height, leaf area index (LAI), leaf area ratio (LAR), leaf weight ratio (LWR), biomass, shoot to root ratio, number of buds, number of leaves, leaf length and width, leaf color, variegation, and ornamental visual quality evaluated by a group of experts and consumers. The rehearsed NO3-:NH4 + ratios has been 100:0, 50:50, and 0:100. The amoniacal form improves the following productive parameters: plant height, LAI, biomass, number of leaves, number of buds and color of the leaf, as well as the visual quality as much for experts as for consumers.

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D.S. Gardner

Vermicomposting is the process of fragmenting organic wastes with certain species of earthworms. A variety of vermicomposts are being marketed as fertilizer materials for turfgrass management, particularly in the golf course industry. In 2002 and 2003, field trials were conducted on established kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis) in Columbus, Ohio, to evaluate the use of vermicomposted animal, food, paper, and turfgrass clipping waste materials as a turfgrass fertilizer under home lawn maintenance conditions. Visual quality of the plots was significantly higher for 2 weeks after application of paper vermicompost, regardless of application rate. Few other differences in either turfgrass visual quality of clipping yields were observed during a 6-week period after application, regardless of application rate or source of vermicompost. Based on the results of these studies, the use of vermicompost as a fertilizer material on established turfgrass is not warranted.

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M. Laganière, P. Lecomte, and Y. Desjardins

In Quebec, commercial sod is produced on >3000 ha. Generally, ≈20 months are required to produce market-ready sod. When conditions are suitable, harvest of marketable sod is possible within a year. However, intensive management may result in soil compaction and a reduction of the organic matter content. Considering the increasing amount of amendment available, sod production fields could be interesting for their disposal. In this study, visual quality and sod root growth was examined following an application of an organic amendment at 50, 100, and 150 t·ha–1, incorporated to depth of 6 or 20 cm. Plots established on a sandy soil receiving organic amendments had higher visual quality ratings. Bulk density was significantly reduced following compost or paper sludge application to a heavy soil. The shearing strength required to tear sod amended with compost was significantly higher in comparison with control and paper sludge treatments.

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Francis X. Mangan, Claire Kozower, and William Bramlage

Latinos are 6% of the population of Massachusetts and are the largest and fastest-growing ethnic minority in this state. Due to the increase in Latinos and other ethnic groups, farmers in Massachusetts are diversifying their crops to meet the demands of these new markets. Cilantro is a popular herb in Latino cuisine; however, many farmers in Massachusetts are not familiar with production and postharvest practices for this plant. A factorial experiment was initiated on a commercial farm in eastern Massachusetts to ascertain more information about short-term postharvest treatments. This experiment was performed on three dates in the fall of 1999, which served as replications. There were three main effects: cilantro harvested the same day and stored in the sun, cilantro harvested the same day and stored in the shade, and cilantro harvested on previous day and stored in the shade. For each main effect there were six sub-effects for cilantro storage: roots intact, roots removed, roots intact and plants in sealed plastic bag, roots removed and plants in sealed plastic bag, roots intact and plants in water, roots removed and plants in water. Cilantro bunches were given a visual quality number every hour from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm on each date. No difference in visual quality was observed between cilantro with roots intact compared to cilantro with roots removed. Cilantro stored in the direct sun had a lower visual quality index than cilantro stored in the shade. Cilantro stored in water or in a sealed plastic bag and kept in the shade showed little decrease in visual quality after 7 hours on the day of harvest. The results of these experiments will help farmers in Massachusetts to produce and market cilantro to meet the growing demands for this product.

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Donald R. Hodel and Dennis R. Pittenger

The objectives of this study were to investigate the responses of several groundcovers to periodic mowing and determine which ones benefit from mowing in terms of aesthetic quality, density, height and thatch development.

Eight species were transplanted on 30 cm centers in September. Five species had become fully grown in 10 months and were mowed to either a 5 cm or 10 cm height. Four species received a second mowing at 10 cm 8 or 11 months later. The remaining three species became fully grown in 18 or 21 months and were mowed at 10 cm at that time. Visual quality scores were recorded monthly, as were average overall plant and thatch heights. Lantana, Osteospermum and Verbena expressed little or no long-term loss in visual quality, while their height and thatch growth were controlled well when mowed in the spring-summer period. Height and thatch growth were controlled well in Drosanthemum and Aptenia, but visual quality was unacceptable. Spring mowing appears to produce reductions in height and thatch with no significant loss in quality of Myoporum and Baccharis but with significant loss in quality of Rosemarinus.

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Allen Owings, Anthony Witcher, and Allen Broyles

Coleus were trialed for landscape performance during 2003 and 2004 at Burden Center in Baton Rouge, La. This included a mid-spring through fall evaluation in 2003 and a spring through summer and summer through fall evaluation in 2004. Over 45 cultivars, including the Solar, Hurricane, Stained Glassworks, and Aurora series, were evaluated. Visual quality ratings were taken twice monthly and included compactness, foliage color, uniformity, and overall aesthetics. Flower observations were noted. Beds were located in full sun and consisted of a raised row of an Olivier silt loam soil. Plants were drip irrigated as needed to prevent stress. A separate study compared sun and shade (60%) performance of Kong coleus cultivars in the late summer through fall 2004. The Solar series performed well in 2003 and 2004, and generally had visual quality ratings signifi cantly greater than cultivars in the Hurricane, Stained Glassworks and Aurora series. Height was also greater in the Solar series. The Hurricane series had signifi cant flowering early in the evaluation periods, although `Louise' was slower to fl ower than `Benji' or `Jenni'. Kong coleus cultivars in 60% shade were about 50% shorter than those in full sun. `Aurora Black Cherry' was superior to the other cultivars in the series in terms of visual quality and slowness to fl ower. `Mississippi Summer Sun' (a/k/a Razzle Dazzle) and `Red Ruffle' were top performers among the nonseries cultivars evaluated.