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Steven E. Newman

Hypertext applications have grown from highlighted index referencing tools used in “help” windows to sophisticated file sharing between many computers linked via the World Wide Web (WWW). Software such as Mosaic makes this link easy and convenient by using “Hypertext Markup Language” (HTML). Most universities and many companies have installed WWW servers and have provided disk space for general use. Horticulture departments and many botanical gardens across the country and all over the world are adapting to this technology by providing access to extension information sheets, newsletters, and selected manuscripts. Pesticide chemical manufacturers are also establishing WWW servers with the intent on providing rapid access to pesticide labels and material safety data sheets (MSDS). For local classroom use, HTML using a WWW server can provide an innovative and alternative means for delivering lecture material.

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Steven E. Newman

Scaling from dissolved and suspended solids in irrigation water reduces the efficiency of greenhouse irrigation systems. Water deposits inside pipes reduce water flow and deposits may reduce the flow through irrigation emitters, often clogging them. If not properly maintained, the clogging of emitters requires constant maintenance. This results in considerable labor expense and/or emitter replacement. Scaling inside irrigation system pipes also has the potential to harbor plant pathogens from the resulting biofilms. Oxcide, a novel hypochlorous acid (HOCl) compound, is produced electrochemically by removing sodium and hydroxide from sodium hypochlorite. The elimination of sodium hydroxide from the product creates a nontoxic oxidizer. A system to inject Oxcide into irrigation water at a commercial Colorado greenhouse was installed to maintain irrigation efficiency of emitters and irrigation lines during Winter 2003. The oxidation reduction potential (ORP) was monitored and visual evaluations of irrigation equipment in the Oxcide treated zones compared to those zones not treated with Oxcide was conducted. During January through March, geranium stock plants were irrigated with water that maintained ORP levels at around 600 mV. Visual ratings of the irrigation emitters revealed that the injection of Oxcide in the irrigation water did reduce the level of deposition. Deposition on the main feed lines was so thick that they hindered the complete closure of existing valves. Treatment of the irrigation water Oxcide injection for six months successfully removed of the scale and deposits from the water line.

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Andrea Crowell and Steven E. Newman

The cut-flower industry is continually searching for unique products to introduce to the floral industry. Our objective was to select potential species for trial as new greenhouse-grown alternative cut flowers. Hardy perennials from the Rock/Alpine Garden at the Denver Botanical Garden served as the selection pool. Plants in this collection were fitting due to their durability in Colorado conditions and their rugged unique beauty. Several trial cuts of potential species were taken, and the flowers were evaluated for flower size, stem length, stem strength, foliage, vase life, usefulness, and general aesthetic quality. Next, an informal survey of growers, retailers, researchers, and consumers was taken to determine which flowers had already been seen on the market and which flowers would be potentially successful in the trade. After assimilating the information, the following six species were selected for trial future greenhouse production: Anthyllis vulneraria, Dianthus giganteus, Diascia integerrima, Echium lusitanium, Heuchera sanguinea `Bressingham Hybrids', and Trollius yunnanensis.

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Muhammad Maqbool and Steven E. Newman

Twelve snapdragon cultivars of different response groups were grown in a double polyethylene greenhouse to determine the impact of no root-zone heat (RZH) and 22C RZH at 15 or 20C night air temperature (NT) on flower quality. Data were recorded when the first floret of each stem showed color and harvested when the lower third of the florets were open, Flower quality was evaluated at harvest based upon stem length and fresh weight using Society of American Florists standards. Cultivars `Butterfly White II', `Hercules', `Navajo', and West Virginia' (Group II) were the first to bloom under 20C NT regardless of RZH; whereas cultivars `Oklahoma', Houston', and `Potomac Pink' (Group IV) were delayed. Similar trends were observed under 15C NT, but the crop was harvested a few days earlier with RZH as compared to no heat. Flower quality was better under 15C NT.

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Steven E. Newman* and Robert O. Miller

Greenhouse and nursery managers rely on testing laboratories with the expectations of accuracy and consistency. The Greenhouse and Nursery Media Analysis Proficiency (GNMAP) Testing program was initiated to provide laboratories servicing greenhouses and nurseries with inter-laboratory quality control. The GNMAP program operational guidelines are based on those outlined under ISO 9000, ISO/IEC Guide 43 and Draft ISO/IEC Guide 24, which describe the requirements for proficiency testing. Nine laboratories enrolled in the program in 2003 and submitted results for root zone media and fertilizer solutions. Data analysis provided the minimum, maximum and median values; median absolute deviation (MAD); overall reproducibility (Rd); individual reported lab values; repeatability (Rp) of lab value (CV for the individual lab); and mean lab value reported. The Rd was calculated from the median of all lab Rp values and is a measure of intra-lab variance. A measure of inter-lab variance was determined by calculating the relative median deviations (RMD = MAD/Median × 100). For one of the media distributed, results for the saturated media extract included median pH values from 4.3 to 6.9 with MAD values averaging 0.1 across the three samples. The electrical conductivity (EC) median values ranged from 0.36 to 4.57 dS/m with RMD averaging 31% of the median. The main variability between laboratories for the majority of the macro cations was closely aligned with measured EC. Cations (K, CA and Mg) concentrations ranged from 17 to 502 mg/L with Ca typically in the greatest concentration. Cation inter-lab precision, based on the RMD ranged from 9-32% across the three substrate samples. The greatest RMD was 31.8% for Ca and 9.2% for K. The Rd values for the cations averaged 5%.

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C. Elizabeth Succop and Steven E. Newman

During 1995, 33 poinsettia cultivars were evaluated for Colorado greenhouse production conditions. Plants were supplied by the Paul Ecke Poinsettia Ranch, Fischer Geraniums USA, Oglevee, and Mikkelsens. At the end of the production period, Colorado greenhouse growers were invited to an open house and asked to judge the cultivars for plant, bract, and cyathia quality. As rated by the 24 growers, the best red cultivars in overall performance were `Freedom Red', `Nutcracker Red', `Cortez', and `Bonita', respectively. The best pink cultivars in overall performance were `Nutcracker Pink', `Maren', and `Flirt', respectively. The best white cultivars in overall performance were `Nutcracker White' and `V-17 Angelika White', respectively. The best novelty cultivars in overall performance were `Puebla' and `Monet', respectively.

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Jesse R. Quarrels and Steven E. Newman

Greenhouse studies of cut flower snapdragons (Antirrhinum majus L.) using two night air and two root-zone temperatures were conducted to determine the effects on growth and quality of four cultivars in two response groups [`Cheyenne' and `Rainier White' (group II) and `Tampico' and `Potomac' (group III)]. The group II cultivars were the earliest to harvest, but at the expense of quality. Grades of first, extra, and fancy only were harvested. Group III cultivars were harvested with all grades; first, extra, fancy and special. Group II cultivars generally had weaker stems and were of lower dry weight. Night air temperature had the greatest effect on days to harvest. Harvest date was reduced more than 14 days, but at the expense of quality and dry weight. Root-zone heating decreased quality of the group II cultivars at either night air temperature. but reduced quality of the group Ill cultivars only at high night temperatures. Root-zone heat and high night air temperature reduced the number of days to harvest, also at the expense of quality. The majority of high quality stems were from group Ill cultivars harvested from rooms with low night temperatures without root-zone heat.

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Steven E. Newman and Jesse R. Quarrels

Many nurseries are using the pot-in-pot (PNP) system to grow trees in containers. This system protects the roots from temperature extremes and prevents tipping. PNP is not without problems, trees with vigorous roots may escape the container and root into the external soil making harvest difficult. PNP has no effect on root circling. Our objective was to determine if a polypropylene fabric disk treated with either trifluralin or copper placed in the bottom of a container would prevent root circling. Cercis canadensis and Quercus shumardii seedlings were grown in 19 liter polyethylene containers with eight root control treatments, which included trifluralin or copper impregnated polypropylene fabric disks placed in the bottom of the containers. Ttifluralin treatments, BioBarrier and trifluralin impregnated fabric, had few roots in the bottom of the containers. Of the copper treatments, Spinout® impregnated fabric was the only copper treatment that had any effect on root development in the bottom of the containers.

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D. Clay Collins and Steven E. Newman

The Leaf Wetness Data Logger (LWL) and accompanying Logbook software were designed by Spectrum Technologies Inc. as a low-maintenance tool to aid in disease prediction and spray scheduling for outdoor field-grown crops. The LWL mimics leaf surface moisture represented as a value between 0 (dry) and 15 (wet). We explored an expanded use of the LWL to large-scale commercial greenhouses for the purpose of humidity control and disease prevention. Data were collected over 15 days in a commercial hydroponic tomato production greenhouse and repeated. Results indicated that leaf wetness, as determined by the LWL, increased during irrigation periods, with cumulative effects dependent on daily irrigation requirements and climate. Irrigation was controlled by the climate control computer in response to cumulative radiation intensity. By analyzing leaf wetness in correlation with climatic conditions, more adequate irrigation scheduling may be implemented, reducing the risk of disease spread and infection.

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Allen D. Owings and Steven E. Newman

Four rates of seven plant growth regulators were foliar-applied to 11.4 liter containers of Photinia × fraseri after initial root establishment. Growth regulators studied were uniconazole, paclobutrazol, dikegulac-sodium, ancymidol, 6-BA, GA4+7 and, 6-BA + GA4+7. Six months after application, plant height, plant width, growth index, and number of lateral and terminal branches were recorded.

Applications of uniconazole (30 mg a.i./liter), 6-BA alone or in combination with GA4+7, and dikegulacsodium stimulated lateral branching. The number of lateral branches increased linearly as paclobutrazol rates increased from 60 to 180 mg a.i./liter. Growth index decreased with increasing application rates of uniconazole and paclobutrazol, while the growth index of photinia treated with other growth regulators wasn't affected by application rate. Plant height was increased in GA4+7 treated plants.