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William L. Bauerle* and Joe E. Toler

A multiplicative model of stomatal conductance was developed and tested in two functionally distinct ecotypes of Acer rubrum L. (red maple). The model overcomes the main limitation of the commonly used Ball-Berry model by accounting for stomatal behavior under soil drying conditions. It combined the Ball-Berry model with an integrated expression of abscisic acid-based control mechanisms (gfac). The factor gfac = exp(-β[ABA]L) incorporated the stomatal response to abscisic acid (ABA) concentration in the bulk leaf tissue [ABA]L into the Ball-Berry model by down-regulating the slope and coupled physiological changes at the leaf level with those of the root. The stomatal conductance (gs) down regulation is pertinent in situations where soil drying may modify the delivery of chemical signals to leaf stomates. Model testing results indicated that the multiplicative model was capable of predicting stomatal conductance under wide ranges of soil and atmospheric conditions in a woody perennial. Concordance correlation coefficients (rc) were high (between 0.59 and 0.94) for the tested ecotypes under three different environmental conditions (aerial, distal, and minimal stress). The study supported the use of the gfac factor as a gas exchange function that controlled water stress effects on gs and aided in the prediction of gs responses.

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Tommy E. Thompson, L.J. Grauke, and William Reid

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H. Brent Pembcrton, George L. Philley, and William E. Roberson

Plants of field grown rose cultivars Blaze, Gold Glow, Queen Elizabeth, Mr. Lincoln, Montezuma, Don Juan, Chicago Peace, and Pink Peace endured two major freezes. Temperatures fell to -13°C on 16 December 1989 and as low as -20°C during an extended period from 17 to 28 December 1989 when the highest temperature reached was 5°. Grade 1 plants of each cultivar were harvested on 5 January 1990. At harvest, discoloration of the pith, xylem ray parenchyma and bud union tissue was assessed. Additional plants were then potted and forced in a glasshouse at 15° night temperalure with venting at 21° during the day. At the end of the initial flush of growth, which was defined as either the opening of the first flower or the determination that all new shoots were blind, new growth was rated and measured. Blaze exhibited minimal damage with only slight pith discoloration. The total number of flowering shoots (TNFS) for Blaze was 5.5 per plant which is an expected number from a grade 1 plant. Of the other cultivars. Gold Glow and Pink Peace exhibited pith, xylem, and bud union damage with up to 50% cane dieback, but produced flowering shoots from the graft union. However, only half the expected TNFS per plant were produced. The remaining cultivars also exhibited higher damage levels than Blaze which resulted in reduced shoot numbers and flowering. Only Blaze plants received an acceptable plant marketability rating.

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Nawab Ali, Robert Skirvin, Walter E. Splittstoesser, and William L. George

Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) seeds of `Marketer', `Marketmore', `Wisconsin SMR-18', `Tablegreen', `Spotfree', and `China' were stored at 3C and 38% relative humidity for up to 26 years. Seed older than 13 years did not germinate. Cultivars stored 10 years gave 80% germination, except Wisconsin SMR-18' (40%). Ten-year-old seeds were separated from their seedcoats, and cotyledons were excised into six segments. Explants were placed on Murashige and Skoog medium with all combinations of BAP (0, 1,2, and 3 mg·liter-1) and NAA (0, 0.1,0.2, and 0.3 mg·liter-1). Plants were obtained from culture for all cultivars grown on medium containing NAA and 1 mg BAP/liter. No plants were regenerated when BAP or NAA was lacking. Chemical names used: benzylaminopurine (BAP), 1-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA).

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Arvazena E. Clardy, Sabrina L. Shaw, and William F. Hayslett

Red Delano chrysanthemum cuttings were transplanted into 15 cm pots. Fertilizer treatments were started immediately. Initial fertilizer rates were 14.8 cc of the designated formulation per pot. Two formulations of fertilizer, 20-20-20 and 5-50-17 NPK, were used in excessive rates to determine if it would override the effects of the growth inhibitors. Paclobutrazol, uniconizole, and daminozide were used to retard growth. Three rates-30, 60, and 120 ppm of paclobutrazol, and 10, 20, and 40 ppm of uniconizole and one rate of 25 % daminozide were foliar applied (two applications) on the plants. After two weeks the plants were treated with the growth retardants and an additional treatment of fertilizer were added at the rate of 29.6 cc per pot. Measurements taken were plant height, top fresh weight, root fresh weight, and root development. ANOVA was used to determine differences and interactions. Significant differences were noted in plant height and root development.

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William E. Roberson, H. Brent Pemberton, and George L. Philley

To determine the efficacy of cyproconazole for control of black spot [Marssonina rosae (Lib.) Lind] when applied as a drench, treatments of 0, 32.5, 65, 97.5 and 130 g a.i./ha were initiated 9 May 1994 on individual Rosa `Peace' plants in a randomized complete-block design. Treatments were applied once per month until 18 Oct. 1994. Data were taken in July, Sept., and Nov. 1994 when separate disease and defoliation ratings were assigned. By July, the controls were heavily infected; the higher treatment rates resulted in significant control. By September, the disease and defoliation ratings exhibited a linear response with cyproconazole rate, with the highest treatment rate giving the best control. The relationship between disease and defoliation ratings and treatment rate remained the same in November, although there was increased disease incidence overall. No phytotoxicity was observed. These results indicate that soil applied treatments of cyproconazole can control black spot effectively on roses.

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William E. Little, Jonathan R. Schultheis, and Robert L. Mikkelsen

North Carolina is a leading poultry producer in the United States. Thus, much waste by-product also is produced and must be handled in an environmentally responsible way. Using poultry and similar waste products as a fertilizer source for vegetables, such as sweetpotatoes, might serve as a viable use option. Our purpose was to determine the effectiveness of animal wastes and sludges as nutrient sources for sweetpotatoes. The effects of municipal solid waste, composted litter, fresh litter, and synthetic fertilizers were compared for their effects on yield and quality of `Regal' and `Beauregard' sweetpotato varieties. The test was planted as a split-plot randomized complete-block design with each treatment replicated four times. Planting was 3 June, and harvest was 27 Sept. 1994. Yields were similar when fertilized with either organic or synthetic nutrient sources. Root quality was excellent, regardless of fertilizer, because few culls resulted, and there were no differences between treatments. Sweetpotatoes can be successfully grown with various organic nutrient sources without affecting quality or yield and might be marketed as “organically grown” produce. This label may command a higher market price than sweetpotatoes grown traditionally with synthetic nutrient sources.

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Xiaomei Zhao, William L. Kingery, and Steven E. Newman

Media blends containing 25%, 40%, and 50% shredded tire rubber were compared to two commercial media, Baccto Grower's Mix and Ball Peat-Lite Mix, to evaluate its potential as a container medium amendment for container-grown greenhouse plants. Salvia splendens `Red Hot Sally' and Vinca rosea `Cooler Peppermint' grown in 25% rubber were marketable with growth similar to or superior to those grown in the commercial media. Exacum affine `Little Champ', Vinca rosea `Cooler Grape', Tagetes erecta `Discovery Yellow', and Begonia semperflorens `Vodka' grown in 25% rubber were of marginally acceptable quality. Plants grown in 40% or more rubber were shorter and chlorotic compared to those in the commercial media. Exacum affine grown in 40% or more rubber contained high levels of zinc, which may have been linked to the chlorosis and growth reduction. Rubber reduced media water-holding capacity, while cation exchange capacity and pH were not affected.

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William E. Klingeman*, Darren K. Robinson, and Gary L. McDaniel

Mugwort, or false chrysanthemum (Artemisia vulgaris L) is a well-adapted invasive plant that presents increasing management challenges to agricultural producers, Green Industry professionals and homeowners across portions of the eastern U.S. The ability of mugwort to regenerate from cut rhizome sections has not been adequately quantified for substrates that are typical of landscapes and nursery fields, container nurseries, and propagation beds. Cut rhizome sections were analyzed by rhizome color, length, and the presence or absence of a leaf scale. Media substrates included pine bark, sand, and soil. Rhizomes darken with time and color did not account for differences in growth among treatments. When grown in pine bark, sand, and soil substrates during 45-d trials, 85%, 78%, and 69% of 2 cm-long rhizome sections produced both roots and shoots. These results contrast with previous research. When rhizome fragments 0.5 cm long did not include a leaf scale, slightly fewer than 31% produced both roots and shoots in soil. Fewer rhizomes survived in soil, but root and shoot fresh masses of soil-grown rhizomes were greater than rhizomes that were regenerated in pine bark and sand. When rhizome sections had a leaf scale, survival, fresh masses of roots and shoots, shoot height, leaf number and root lengths were greater, regardless of substrate type. Root initials emerged in the internode between leaf scales and also adjacent to leaf scales. Shoot emergence preceded root emergence from rhizome sections. Growers, landscape managers and homeowners should scout regularly and initiate aggressive controls when mugwort populations are found.

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William B. Evans, Christine E. Coker, Kent E. Cushman, Thomas E. Horgan, and Keri L. Paridon

Three years of trials in Mississippi have led to the naming of a Mississippi Medallion vegetable award winner for 2007, the fourth vegetable winner in the program's history. The Medallion program looks for garden crops that will perform throughout the state of Mississippi and help improve sales of plant materials to gardeners at retail. The Medallion selection process illustrates how growers and marketers, not just gardeners, can select specialty vegetables and cultivars for production and sale. Between 2003 and 2005, the Mississippi Medallion trials evaluated 11 sweet peppers with no green fruit stage for ornamental and yield value. Each site had three or four replications of all cultivars under evaluation annually with four plants per plot set out on raised beds with drip irrigation. Objective evaluation included total yield, marketable yield, fruit size, and days to harvest. Subjective evaluation included crop uniformity, pest tolerance, and appearance of the fruit based on color, uniformity, and shape. After nine trials, four cultivars were among the highest-yielding group in most trials: Mavras, Tequilla, Blushing Beauty, and Gypsy. The Medallion winner, to be announced in Fall 2006, was selected in part because it was within or near the top-yielding group, by least significant difference, in most trials. The perceived attractiveness of the mature fruit to the evaluating team and the perceived potential marketability of the cultivar moved it above the others under consideration. The reasons for not selecting other cultivars as the winner are as important as the reasons for selecting the winning cultivar. In the Medallion pepper case, these were mostly marketability concerns with the other cultivars, not yield issues, relative to that of the winner.