solute transport is warranted to develop a more direct and thorough understanding of water and solute transport in soilless systems. Physical properties of the pine-bark and sand blends commonly used in the mid-Atlantic and southeastern U.S. nursery
In recent years, several peat and pine bark (PB) alternative substrates have been developed and researched in the United States and throughout the world. The interest in new substrates is in response to the increasing cost and environmental issues
Growth of Chrysanthemum morifolium Ramat was evaluated in ground pine bark:sand mixes; a soil:peat:perlite mix; and commercially mixed media. Flowering stem:dry weight of plants grown in barkrsand (3:1 or 2:1, by volume) were comparable to commercial mixes but 100% pine bark or soil:peat:perlite significantly reduced plant height and flowering stem dry weight.
Water absorption curves were developed for air dry peat-vermiculite and pine bark media. Data indicated 70-78% of moisture saturation was attained within 5 days with a peatvermiculite medium while 48 days were required to achieve 58-70% saturation with a milled pine bark medium. Increased water absorption of pine bark after 10 days of wetting suggested that a threshold moisture level within the bark particles is necessary if water uptake is to be enhanced. The threshold moisture content was established at 35% (wet wt basis).
Dendranthema×grandiflorum (Ramat.) were grown in either a peat-based or pine bark—based medium and drenched with growth retardants at a range of concentrations to generate dose : response curves. The effect of ancymidol, paclobutrazol, and uniconazole on stem elongation was less in the pine bark—based than in the peat-based medium. Generally, the concentrations required to achieve the same response were 3- to 4-fold as high in the pine bark—based medium as in the peat-based medium. However, chlormequat was slightly more active in the pine bark—based medium than in the peat-based medium. Chemical names used: α-cyclopropyl-α—(4-methoxyphenyl)-5-pyrimidinemethanol (ancymidol); (±)-(R*,R*)-β-[(4-chlorophenyl)methyl]-α-(1,1-di methyl)-1H-1,2,4-triazole-1-ethanol (paclobutrazol); (E)-(RS)-1-(4-chlorophenyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2-(1H-1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)pent -l-en-3-ol (uniconazole); 2-chloroethyltrimethylammonium chloride (chlormequat).
Dwarf Japanese euonymus (Euonymus japonica Thunb. ‘Microphylla’) and Japanese holly (Ilex crenata Thunb. ‘Compacta’), grown in fresh or aged (1 year) pine bark amended with a slow-release complete fertilizer, were supplied with NH4NO3 weekly at 0, 100, 200, or 300 ppm N. Plant growth, foliar color, leaf tissue N, and leachate soluble salts increased with increasing levels of supplemental N while tissue K, Ca, and Mg decreased. Plant growth, foliar color, and leaf tissue N, P, Ca, and Mg in fresh pine bark equaled or exceeded that in aged pine bark at all levels of supplemental N. Leachate soluble salts, pH, and leaf tissue K was higher in aged pine bark.
The objective of this study was to determine the effect of micronutrient fertilization on seedling growth in pine bark with pH ranging from 4.0 to 5.5. Koelreuteria paniculata (Laxm.) was container-grown from seed in pine bark amended (preplant) with 0, 1.2, 2.4, or 3.6 kg/m3 dolomitic limestone and 0 or 0.9 kg/m3 sulfate-based micronutrient fertilizer (Micromax ®). Initial pine bark pH for each lime rate was 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5, respectively. Final pH (week 10) ranged from 4.7 to 6.4. Ca and Mg supply in irrigation water was 10.2 and 4.2 mg·L–1. Seedlings were harvested 10 weeks after planting, and shoot dry weight and height were determined. Pine bark solution was extracted using the pour-through method at 3, 7, and 10 weeks after planting. Solution pH was measured, and solutions were analyzed for Ca, Mg, Fe, Mn, Cu, and Zn. Shoot dry weight and height were higher in micronutrient-amended bark than in bark without added micronutrients. Lime (1.2 kg·
Successful greenhouse tomato businesses are able to keep production and quality high while maintaining reasonable cost controls. One way of controlling costs is to use growing media that are locally available in good supply, and therefore of low cost. In Mississippi. as in other states in the southeast, pine bark is an available byproduct resource from the forestry industry; fines (<=95mm diameter) can be used as a growing medium following composting. Rice hulls are a readily available waste product from rice mills, especially in the Mississippi Delta region; these are suitable after being crushed and composted.
In comparison to plants grown in rock wool, yield from plants in pine bark fines, rice hulls, or sand were higher, while quality was not significantly different in the l-crop/year system. In a spring crop, yield and quality were higher from plants in pine bark, rice hulls, and rock wool than from those grown in sand. On a per plant basis, cost for the rock wool system, perlite system (pre-bagged), perlite (bulk), peat moss, sand, composted rice hulls, and pine bark lines are $1.50, $1.00, $0.35, $0.60, $0.24, $0.22 and $0.17, respectively. Pine bark and rice hulls are good choices for growing media for greenhouse tomatoes in areas where they are available.
The pour-through (PT) nutrient extraction method involves collection of leachate at the container bottom that results from displacement of substrate solution by water applied to the substrate surface. The PT is a convenient and effective means of monitoring the nutritional status of the soilless container substrates used in the nursery industry, but is less convenient for large containers, particularly those used in the “pot-in-pot” system of growing trees in production containers within in-ground socket containers. We describe a simple vacuum method of extracting solution from pine bark in containers using ceramic cup samplers. When N was applied to a pine bark substrate at 56–280 mg/L, extractable N was slightly higher for the PT than for the ceramic cup method. The correlation between applied and extractable N was 0.99 for both methods. Further comparison of pine bark extract nutrient and pH levels for PT and ceramic cup methods will be presented.
Internal porosity, availability of internally adsorbed water, and root growth within a pine bark particle were studied. Internal pore spaces comprised about 43% to 44% of the volume of a pine bark particle. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) of Coleus blumei Benth. and Vaccinium ashei Reade showed roots anchored on the exterior surface and developing within the bark particle. Seedling development (Raphanus sativus L.) in water-saturated pieces indicated that internally adsorbed water was available provided that roots developed within the bark particle. The quantity of available water remains to be determined.