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Holly L. Scoggins-Mantero and Harry A. Mills

`Freedom' poinsettias (Euphorbia pulcherrima Willd. ex Kl.) were grown to flowering in solution culture for 11 weeks. Treatments consisted of five ammonium: nitrate nitrogen ratios: 1:0, 3:1, 1:1, 1:3, and 0:1 with a total N concentration of 150 mg N/liter. The balance of essential nutrients was supplied with a modified Hoagland's solution. Fresh weight, dry weight, and macro- and micronutrient content of bracts, leaves, petioles, stems, and roots were determined at the end of the study. Leaf and bract area also was measured. Maximum bract size was achieved with 100% nitrate (0:1) treatment. Leaves were largest with the 1:3 ratio. Plants receiving ammonium as the sole N source exhibited severe ammonium toxicity symptoms: stunted growth, foliar chlorosis and necrosis, premature leaf abscission, stunted and clubby roots, and delayed or nonexistent bract coloring. Dry weights for bracts, leaves, stems, and roots increased as the ratio of nitrate increased. Elemental uptake was monitored weekly. Nitrogen-form effect on the uptake, concentration, and partitioning of other nutrients also was evaluated.

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Willie O. Chance III and Harry A. Mills

Mature zucchini squash plants (Cucurbita pepo L.) were grown under four NO3:NH4 ratios (1:0, 3:1, 1:1, and 1:3) to determine effects on macronutrient nutrition. Plants were grown in solution culture under greenhouse conditions. Treatments were applied at first bloom. Highest uptake of Ca and Mg occurred in the 1:0 NO3:NH4 treatment while higher K uptake was found in the 3:1 NO3:NH4 treatment. Total nitrogen uptake was greatest in the 1:1 and 3:1 NO3:NH4 treatments. A 3:1 NO3:NH4 ratio applied at first bloom gave best overall uptake of N, K, Ca, and Mg.

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Willie O. Chance III and Harry A. Mills

Mature zucchini squash plants (Cucurbita pepo L.) were grown under four NO3:NH4 ratios (1:0, 3:1, 1:1, and 1:3) to determine effects on macronutrient nutrition. Plants were grown in solution culture under greenhouse conditions. Treatments were applied at first bloom. Highest uptake of Ca and Mg occurred in the 1:0 NO3:NH4 treatment while higher K uptake was found in the 3:1 NO3:NH4 treatment. Total nitrogen uptake was greatest in the 1:1 and 3:1 NO3:NH4 treatments. A 3:1 NO3:NH4 ratio applied at first bloom gave best overall uptake of N, K, Ca, and Mg.

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Holly L. Scoggins-Mantero and Harry A. Mills

Nutritional levels of mature vs. young leaves of Anthurium (Anthurium andraeanum Linden.) cultivars were determined over a seven year period. Nutritional levels for essential nutrients tested (B, Ca++, Cu++, Fe++, K+, Mg++, Mn++, Mo-, P, and Zn++) were determined with inductively coupled plasma emission spectrometry. Kjeldahl N was determined with a flow injection analyzer. The young leaf, 90% mature, was determined to be the most accurate predictor of the nutritional status of anthuriums. These values were established for the cultivars `Kozohara', `Nitta Orange', `Kaumana', and `Ozaki'.

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Holly L. Scoggins and Harry A. Mills

Crop-specific tailoring of fertilizer composition and timing of application reduces expense and runoff pollution. We examined the effects N forms and ratios have on growth, development, and utilization of nutrients in poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima Willd. Ex Klotz.). Rooted cuttings of poinsettia `Freedom' were grown to flowering (10 weeks) in aerated solution culture under greenhouse conditions. Treatments consisted of five N ratios (percent ammonium: percent nitrate) of 100:0, 75:25, 50:50, 25:75, and 0:100 with a total N concentration of 150 mg·L–1. Dry mass for all plant parts and height increased as the ratio of NO 3 increased. Leaf and bract areas were greatest with ratios of 25:75 and 50:50, respectively. Plants receiving 100% \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\) \end{document} exhibited severe ammonium toxicity symptoms and uptake of all macronutrients was suppressed. Average weekly uptake of \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\) \end{document}, \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\) \end{document}, P, and K was significantly affected by the treatments. Maximum uptake of \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\) \end{document} and K occurred with 100% \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\) \end{document}, P with 25:75, and \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\) \end{document} with 100% \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\) \end{document}. Uptake averaged across all treatments was divided into physiological growth stages (GS) to identify peak demand periods. The greatest uptake of \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\) \end{document} and \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\) \end{document} was from the beginning of treatments to floral induction (GSI). Uptake of P, K, and Mg peaked at GSII, floral induction to visible bud. Visible bud to anthesis (GSIII) had the lowest uptake for all nutrients. These results demonstrate how \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}:\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\) \end{document} ratios and stage of development can influence growth and nutrient absorption.

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Eric H. Simonne, Doyle A. Smittle, and Harry A. Mills

An irrigation scheduling model for turnip (Brassica rapa L.) was validated using a line-source irrigation system in a 2-year field trial. The model used a water balance, a variable root length, and a crop factor function of plant age (i). Evapotranspiration was computed daily as class A pan evaporation times a crop factor [CF(i) = 0.365 + 0.0154i-0.00011i2]. Irrigation according to the model maintained soil water tension at <25 kPa at a 30-cm depth. When rainfall amounts were less than water use, leaf yields responded quadratically to irrigation rates, from 0% to 160% of the model rate, and the highest leaf yield with the lowest water applications corresponded to the model rate. Therefore, this model could replace the “feel or see” methods commonly used for scheduling irrigation of leafy vegetables grown in the southeastern United States.

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Teresa M. Hood, Harry A. Mills, and Paul A. Thomas

Nutrient uptake by `Apache', `Jersey City', `Peoria', and `Philadelphia' snapdragons (Antirrhinum majus L.) was compared at three developmental stages: Stage I, vegetative to bud initiation; Stage II, bud initiation to visible bud; and Stage III, visible bud to anthesis. Significant differences in uptake occurred between one or more developmental stages for all nutrients tested: \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\mathrm{-}\mathrm{N},\mathrm{NH}_{4}^{+}\mathrm{-}\mathrm{NB}\) \end{document}, B, Ca, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Mo, P, and Zn. Uptake of most of the nutrients increased or remained high during Stage III. These results indicate that the current cultural practice of stopping fertilization at bud elongation should be reexamined. Differences in uptake between cultivars were found only for \batchmode \documentclass[fleqn,10pt,legalpaper]{article} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amsmath} \pagestyle{empty} \begin{document} \(\mathrm{NO}_{3}^{-}\mathrm{-}\mathrm{N}\) \end{document}, as uptake by `Apache' was significantly higher than uptake by `Philadelphia'.

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Eric Simonne, Harry A. Mills, and Doyle A. Smittle

Measurements of daily, 3-day, and 6-day cumulative pan evaporation using a #2 wash tub or a modified steel drum and a ruler provided an accurate, easy, and inexpensive way to schedule irrigation. Pan factors for these containers, which were covered with a 5-cm-mesh wire under humid climatic conditions, were 1.0 and 1.1, respectively.

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Dean A. Kopsell, William M. Randle, and Harry A. Mills

Brassica species are important economic vegetable crop, and it is possible to enrich them with selenium (Se) to supplement human diets. The health benefits associated with increased Se consumption include cancer suppression, reduced heart disease, and immune system enhancement. Vegetables enriched with Se can serve as excellent delivery systems of organic Se forms, which are more beneficial than traditional Se supplements. The vegetable Brassicas are consumed not only for their flavor, but also for their nutritional content. A heterogeneous population of rapid-cycling B. oleracea was used as a model system to study the effects of added selenate-Se on other plant micro- and macronutrients. Plants were grown in nutrient solutions amended with sodium selenate at 0.0, 3.0, 6.0, and 9.0 mg·L–1. Leaf tissues were then analyzed for nutrient content. Boron (P = 0.001) and iron (P = 0.01) content decreased, while selenium (P = 0.001), sulfur (P = 0.001), and potassium (P = 0.001) increased with increasing selenate-Se. Significant quadratic responses were found for calcium (P = 0.02), copper (P = 0.05), magnesium (P = 0.01), and molybdenum (P = 0.01). No differences in leaf fresh or dry weight were detected. Changes in plant nutrient content can be expected when Brassicas are enhanced for delivery of beneficial organic Se.

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Zana C. Somda, Harry A. Mills, and Sharad C. Phatak

As a result of long-term application, some fungicides may accumulate in the soil to levels that can affect soil N transformations and plant growth. Studies were initiated to compare benomyl, captan, and lime-sulfur fungicides with the biological nitrification inhibitors (NI) nitrapyrin and terrazole for their effects on biological nitrification and denitrification, and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) growth and N uptake. In laboratory studies, inhibition of nitrification was less than 5% in a Tifton l.s. soil incubated with 10 μg g -1 a.i. of benomyl but was about 51%, 72%, and more than 85% when amended with lime-sulfur, captan, and NI, respectively. Similarly, increased inhibitory effects on denitrification of NO3 were obtained in a liquid media incubated anaerobically with either NI (37%) than captan or lime-sulfur (25%) while benomyl had no significant effect. In greenhouse studies with tomato plants, weekly drench applications of 0.25 μg a.i. g -1 soil of the appropriate chemical for 4 weeks with three NH4:NO3 ratios showed that the NI and captan produced the greatest plant biomass and N uptake, but benomyl and lime-sulfur had no main effect while all fungicides interacted with the N ratio to affect plant growth and N uptake.