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- Author or Editor: R. A. Criley x
More than three dozen species of Heliconia have entered the cut flower trade since the expanded interest in bold tropical cut flowers began in the early 1980s. Most were wild-collected originally with little information on their habitats or season of bloom. A natural flowering season for some species can be found in the taxonomic literature, but it may be influenced locally by rainfall and drought periods as well as by photoperiod and therefore not reliable in indicating production periods in Hawaii. Sales records from 1984 through 1990 or several heliconia growers on Oahu reflected not only the quantities produced but also the time and duration of the blooming season. Such information is helpful in coordinating with the flower markets. Heliconia species of commercial interest with strong seasonal flowering periods are noted: angusta, bihai, caribaea, caribaea X bihai, collinsiana, farinosa, lingulata, rostrata, sampaioana, stricta, subulata, wagneriana.
The most popular Ficus for interior conditions is F. benjamina, which has many clonal selections but still drops its foliage too readily. We compared 4- to 5-foot-tall, shade-grown plants of F. nemoralis, F celebensis, F. binnendykii `Alii,' F. oblongifolia (?), and a selection of F. benjamina thought to be `Gulfstream' with F. benjamina `Exotica' that were transferred to the Hamilton Library of the Univ. Hawaii after 14 weeks under 50%, 65%, or 85% Saran shade. During a 9-week evaluation period, new growth, leaf drop, and photosynthesis were determined. Little new growth developed on any plants during the evaluation period in the library. Leaf loss was greatest for F. benjamina `Exotica,' followed by F. celebensis, while the other four species suffered little leaf loss. Leaf loss was greater for plants grown under 50% shade than for 80% shade, while leaf loss from plants produced under 65% shade was either greater or less than 80% shade, depending on species. Leaf loss was greater in low light sites (13.6 μM/m2 per s) than in medium conditions (20 μM/m2 per s) or near windows (29 μM/m2 pers). After the observation period, the plants were to be removed, but library staff asked to retain many plants as they liked the improved atmosphere the plants gave their office and library settings. Most popular for retention were F. binnendykii`Alii,' F. benjamina `Gulfstream,' and F. benjamina `Exotica,' which still looked good despite its high foliage loss initially. The weeping habits of F. nemoralis and F. oblongifolia (?) were not as desirable because of the space they required, although they are performing well after nearly 12 months in the library. F. celebensis, despite its attractive growth habit and foliage, was a disappointment as it lost many leaves and, over 12 months, developed chlorosis and exudation problems.
Chrysanthemum morifolium Ramat cv. White Spider CF2275 plants were grown in soilless media comprised of an andesitic cinder and pumice inorganic component mixed in 4 ratios with 4 organic components, namely, sphagnum peat, aged wood shavings, aged pineapple waste, and ground tree fern trunks (hapuu). The plant responses in the different media showed little difference from those in the control medium of equal parts of soil, peat, and perlite. Mixtures containing from 33 to 50% organic matter were satisfactory for plant growth. The physical and chemical characteristics of the media were within the ranges defined as satisfactory by previous researchers.
Time intervals between leaf emergence, flower stalk emergence, and flower cut were determined for 550 Strelitzia reginae Ait. (Bird of Paradise) flowers during 1977–80 at an elevation of 25 m in Hawaii. The interval between leaf emergence and flower stalk emergence averaged 186 days with a range of 173 to 204. The interval between flower stalk emergence and flower cut averaged 64 days with a range of 54 to 74. Seasonal differences in the duration of development did not account for the seasonal differences in yield. Dissection of flowering fans revealed sequences of flower bud abortion which occurred during June to October, and accounted for low flower production during winter and early spring months in Hawaii.
A method was developed for observing root growth utilizing polyvinyl chloride pipe with a removable observation window. The simplicity of the equipment and its ability to permit application of soil compactive forces made it ideal for studies on the effects of soil compaction on root growth. It has also proven to be a valuable teaching aid in horticulture laboratory demonstrations.
A harmonic model, consisting of growth and seasonal components, accounted for 80% of the variation in flower production of Strelitzia reginae Ait. (bird of paradise). Time series analyses showed low temperatures to be most closely associated with flower production. A model of flower stalk development indicated the mechanism of seasonal flower production in the increasing phase of the model, low temperature (14° to 16°C) retarded floral differentiation and subsequent elongation prior to flower emergence. A temperature threshold of 27° was the source of seasonal flower production in the decreasing phase of the model by causing flower bud abortion.