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Dwight R. Tingley and Timothy A. Prince

A survey of 16 cut evergreen species found six clustered groupings of species based on ethylene production at 2 and 21C. Ethylene production (in nanoliters per kilogram of fresh weight per hour) at 21C ranged from 26 for Juniperus virginiana to 2800 for Sequoia sempervirens. Exposure to 0.1 or 1.0 ppm ethylene for 72 hours at 2C resulted in minor effects on two species, while significantly delaying senescence of Sequoia sempervirens. Silver thiosulfate (STS) pretreatment decreased or increased longevity of six species, but all effects were minor. Longevity of cut evergreens when held in preservative solution ranged from 14 days for Pinus sylvestris to 56 days for Chamaecyparis lawsoniana. Senescence symptoms observed were needle abscission, desiccation, and/or chlorosis.

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Timothy A. Prince and Maria S. Cunningham

Lining of shipping cases with low-density polyethylene (PE) greatly reduced moisture loss from packing media and bulbs of Lilium longjlorum Thunb. `Nellie White' during shipping, handling, and case vernalization (CV). Three years of studies showed that use of PE liners accelerated floral sprout emergence above the growing medium, floral bud initiation, and flowering date. Effects of case lining became more pronounced as the initial water content of the spagnum peat packing was lowered. Case lining sometimes increased apical meristem diameters measured immediately after vernalization, or 2 or 4 weeks after bulb planting, but flower bud number was never significantly increased. Root growth during the first 4 weeks after planting was not affected by case lining. Bulb scale and basal plate water contents at planting were greater in lined than nonlined cases and when packed in peat of relatively high moisture content. Handling and vernalization of bulbs in PE-lined cases without a packing medium resulted in similar bulb forcing characteristics as in bulbs held in PE-lined cases packed with sphagnum peat.

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Timothy A. Prince and Maria S. Cunningham

Exposure of bulbs of Easter Lily (Lilium longiflorum Thunb.) to a maximum of 2 μl ethylene/liter during vernalization delayed flowering by 5 to 7 days and decreased the number of flower buds. Ethylene exposure for 5 days at 21C after vernalization accelerated shoot emergence and flowering by up to 3 days. No floral or plant abnormalities were observed after bulb exposure to ethylene. Exposure to atmospheres with 0%, 0.5%, or 1% O2 at 21C for up to 2 weeks before or 10 days after vernalization did not “significantly impair subsequent bulb forcing. Storage in 1% 02 at 21C for 1 week before vernalization resulted in nearly one additional secondary bud initiated per plant. Exposure to up to 15% CO2 at 21C for up to 2 weeks before or 10 days after vernalization did not significantly impair subsequent forcing.

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James S. Peary and Timothy A. Prince

Analysis of petal extracts from various species revealed a wide range of lipoxygenase (LOX) activity among sources. A large increase in LOX activity was observed during senescence in both gladiolus (Gladiolus × hortulanus Bailey) and carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus L.) petal tissue. The increase began before the first visible signs of senescence were evident and activity peaked at early to mid-senescence stages. LOX activity of petal extracts from gladiolus was inhibited in vitro by phenidone, a known LOX inhibitor.

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Linda S. Campbell, Timothy A. Prince, and Harry K. Tayama

Uniconazole (Sumagic) drench applications of 1.9, 2.7, and 3.8 mL per plant and spray applications of 10, 20, and 30 ppm resulted in shorter plants and more blasted flower buds compared to control plants. Drench applications also resulted in more chlorotic leaves than controls. Average lily height with Sumagic ranged from 19 to 29 cm after Sumagic drench and spray applications, respectively. Average plant height was 29 and 31 cm for ancymidol spray and drench application, respectively. Bud abortion was 10, 12, and 17% for spray treatments of Sumagic at 10, 20, and 30 ppm, respectively, while ancymidol spray caused no abortion. Bud abortions were 8, 7, and 11% from Sumagic drenches of 1.9, 2.7 and 3.8 mL/plant compared with 0% from ancymidol drenches. Plants drenched with Sumagic exhibited leaf chlorosis on day of bloom of 18, 16 and 16%, respectively, for the three respective rates of application while ancymidol caused 11.8% chlorosis. The number of buds initiated was not affected by the treatments, Further studies should be conducted to determine the effect of lower application rates of Sumagic on Easter lilies.

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Bridget K. Behe, Timothy A. Prince, and Harry K. Tayama

Survey analysis of 510 floral product consumers in Ohio supermarkets identified 34 factors that affect floral purchasing. Responses to 106 survey questions were factor-analyzed using a principal component analysis with varimax rotate that yielded 34 independent factors, accounting for 64% of the total variance. Factors were grouped into five major categories: product, consumer, store, use (gift), and use (location) factors. The analysis condensed the domain of consumer floral purchasing issues into fewer factors that represent the most important influences on floral buying decisions. The factors are useful in market segmentation and were used to define five market segments of supermarket-floral customers.

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Bridget K. Behe, Timothy A. Prince, and Harry K. Tayama

A profile of consumer groups who purchased floral products from supermarkets was studied with a 106-item questionnaire developed to determine the domain of issues affecting supermarket floral purchases. Thirty-four factors were identified in factor analysis and formed the basis for cluster analysis. Cluster analysis was performed on survey responses to create five homogeneous consumer segments. Demographic data and floral-purchase factors were used to profile market segments and distinguishing elements. Fourteen factors contributed most to the differences between segments, including factors of product assortment, number of purchases, degree of personal use, and package importance. Clusters can be used by supermarket and florist management as potential target markets.