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Virginia R. Walter*

A 100 parts per million solution of potassium silicate was added to the nutrient solution of well established, hydroponically grown `Kardinal' rose plants. No significant effects of silicon were determined on post harvest life of the rose flowers harvested over a 3-month period as compared to flowers harvested from control plants grown without the silicon additive. Silicon additive did have a significant positive effect on the length of harvested stems.

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Virginia R. Walter

Presenting slides as part of any horticulture course can be time-consuming and often does not allow students independent viewing. A CD-ROM format can store enough digitized images and text to allow students to systematically view images at their own pace and enhance the classroom instructors ability to communicate desired information rapidly. A Macintosh-formatted model using greenhouse images created from scanned slides will be demonstrated and methods of implementation will be discussed.

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Jin Wang and Virginia R. Walter*

The effect of vernalization and two growth regulators Fascination™ and Pro-Gibb® on the growth, inflorescence development and flowering of Ornithogalum `Chesapeake Snowflake' was studied. Regardless of bulb size, chilling bulbs for 3 weeks at 10°C before planting accelerated flowering of the first inflorescence and shorten leaf length by 3-5cm as compared to non-chilled bulbs. Fascination™ 10% 100 μL and Pro-Gibb® 200 ppm accelerated flowering of first inflorescence by large bulbs (8- to 10-cm circumference) as compared to controls. PGR treatments appear to have no effect on small bulbs (3-5-cm circumference).

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Virginia R. Walter, Mark D. Shelton, and Richard A. Cavaletto

Shipments of floral products to Pacific rim markets must meet stringent pest-free requirements. Conventional fumigation methods with methyl bromide will soon become unavailable. Studies show that controlled atmosphere (CA) environments can offer effective insect control. Currently, CA overseas marine shipping is occuring with fresh fruits and vegetables. These shipments use microprocessors to precisely control O2, CO2, temperature and relative humidity. This study is evaluating similar commercial shipments with fresh flowers and foliage under low temperature and low O2 and high CO2 atmospheres. Preliminary results with shipments conducted by TransFresh to Guam indicate that properly maintained CA shipments of 0.5 % O2 kill insects and that flowers in properly maintained atmospheres can withstand 14 days of marine shipment with minimum effect on post-harvest life. Adequate regulation of CA storage during transit seems to be the primary limitation to the expansion of floral markets using this method of shipment.

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Mark D. Shelton, Victor Mendez, Virginia R. Walter, and David Brandl

Refrigerated (2 °C) controlled atmospheres significantly increased the mortality of green peach aphids [Myzus persicae (Sulzer)] and western flower thrips [Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande)] in laboratory experiments. However, insect mortality during marine shipment in mixedload containers at 0.5 °C did not significantly increase in a controlled atmosphere. In laboratory experiments, mortality of green peach aphids ranged from 32.8% in the refrigerated control to 96.8% after storage in 0.10% O2 for 4 d followed by 7 d in 3% O2 with 5% CO2. When stored under these same conditions, western flower thrips mortality was 71% compared to 16% mortality in the refrigerated control. Following an 11-day marine shipment from California to Guam in a controlled atmosphere, vase life was extended for most of the 20 California cut-flower and foliage products compared to those shipped in the refrigerated air control.