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Yu-Sen Chang and Chen-Yu Lin

The effect of copper hydroxide [Cu(OH)2] applied to interior container surfaces on shoot and root responses was evaluated on palimara alstonia (Alstonia scholaris). The seedlings grown in Cu(OH)2-treated containers had greater plant height than those in untreated containers, and had no observable copper toxicity symptoms. Cu(OH)2-treated containers effectively reduced root circling on the surface of rootballs compared with untreated containers. The Cu(OH)2 treatment significantly increased the dry weight of fine roots (those with a diameter 0-2 mm) and small roots (>2-5 mm) but did not influence the dry weight of medium roots (>5-10 mm), large roots (>10 mm), or total roots. The Cu(OH)2 treatment also significantly increased total root length and surface, which was due principally to the increasing length and surface of the fine roots. The results indicated that the Cu(OH)2 treatment, which can improve the root quality of palimara alstonia seedlings and thereby increase the root-length-to-leaf-area ratio and the root-surface-to-leaf-area ratio, has the potential to produce high-quality plants.

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Edward F. Gilman and Michael E. Kane

Post-planting root development of red maple (Acer rubrum L.) on a well-drained site was compared with that on a site with a high water table. Container-grown red maple planted in 1985 were excavated in 1988 and cross-sectional root area (CSRA) calculated for roots >1 cm diameter, 5 cm beyond the edge of the original container rootball. Adventitious roots were generated in the field after planting, not in the container. Total adventitious CSRA was three times greater than CSRA of roots generated from the original container-produced root system. The number of adventitious roots (7.6) generated from the trunk and primary root after planting was greater than the number of roots originating from the existing root system (4.2). Adventitious root origin on both sites was within 5 cm of the soil surface, above the often circling, kinked, or twisted roots found within the container root ball. Four of the five largest roots were of adventitious origin. Root number, size, and growth rate were not modified by differences in cultural and environmental conditions between sites.

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H.M. Mathers, S.B. Lowe, C. Scagel, D.K. Struve, and L.T. Case

uncompacted (0.39 g·cm −3 ) substrates; however, root malformation was also greatest when grown in compacted substrate. Compaction of 1.01 and 1.10 g·cm −3 resulted in root circling, which may decrease plant performance after transplanting. The influence of

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John M. Ruter

A study was conducted with Dendranthemum ×grandiflorum (Ramat.) Kitamura garden chrysanthemum (`Grenadine', `Nicole', and `Tolima') to evaluate the growth and flowering of these plants grown in 2.6-L (no. 1) black plastic containers compared to plants grown in fiber containers with Cu(OH)2 impregnated into the container walls. For all three cultivars, growth indices, shoot and root dry weights, and total biomass increased for plants grown in fiber containers. Total number of flower buds per plant increased 30% to 32% for `Grenadine' and `Nicole' and 53% for `Tolima' grown in fiber containers. Plants grown in Cu(OH)2-impregnated fiber containers had less root coverage at the container:growing medium interface and no observable root circling in contrast to visible root circling on plants grown in black plastic containers. Foliar nutrient analysis on `Grenadine' showed that K decreased and Fe and Cu increased when grown in Cu(OH)2-impregnated fiber containers. No visible nutrient abnormalities were seen in this study.

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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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Driss Iraqi, Isabelle Duchesne, and Jacques-Andre Rioux

Root system growth in limited volume containers can have important consequences on stem growth and root morphology. The most widespread deformation observed is root circling. Consequently, root circling often reduces growth, root regeneration and tree anchorage at transplanting time. The objective of this study is to restrict root tips. Three tree species were used in the study; Fraxinus Pennsylvanica, Acer saccharinum and Malus baccata. All species were grown in containers lined with one of six combinations of polymer (P) (0, 30 and 60 g/m2 and copper (Cu) (0, 0.4 and 0.8%) coated fabric. Two other treatments were included as controls: a plastic container and a fabric container. Treatments were randomized in complete blocks with six repetitions. Preliminary results of root circling length and dry weight indicate good restriction of root tips for two combinations (30 g of P/m2 - 0.8% Cu; 60 g of P/m2 - 0.8% Cu) for all species. However, treatments did not cause any reduction in stem height, trunk diameter or stem and root dry weight. Phytotoxic symptoms were not observed throughout the experiment.

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Driss Iraqi, Isabelle Duchesne, and Jacques-André Rioux

The most widespread deformation observed in container production is root circling. Consequently, root circling often reduces growth, root regeneration, and tree anchorage at transplanting time. The objectives of this study were to test the effectiveness of Cu(OH)2 lined containers on restriction of root tips, tree growth, and potential root regeneration (PRR). Two species were used in this study: Fraxinus pennsylvanica and Acer saccharinum. Species were grown for one season in containers lined with one of six combinations of polymer (P) (0, 30, and 60 g·m–2) and copper (Cu) (0%,0.4%, and 0.8%) -coated fabric. Two other treatments were included as controls: a plastic container and a fabric container. Seedlings of each species were harvest twice: at the first season and after being transplanted from 10- to 75-liter containers. Treatments were randomized in complete blocks with six repetitions. Results of root circling length and dry weight indicate good restriction of root tips for two combinations (30 g of P/m2–0.8% Cu; 60 g of P/m2–0.8% Cu) for all species. However, treatments did not cause any reduction in stem height, trunk diameter, or stem and root dry weight. At the end of the transplanting season, PRR was greater for two combinations (30 g of P/m2–0.8% Cu; 60 g of P/m2–0.8% Cu), especially for green ash. No significant differences were observed between a plastic fabric and the two treatments cited for the other growth parameters. No phytotoxic symptoms were observed throughout the experiment.

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Ricky D. Kemery and Michael N. Dana

Fir seedling transplant containers were used as an alternative to conventional plug containers (72 per tray) in a system to grow seedlings of native prairie perennials and install them on a highway site in central Indiana. Plants grown in deep-tube fir-seedling containers exhibited greater fresh and dry weights than conventional plug transplants with no root circling. Results from survival data indicate that plants grown in fir seedling containers offer better chances of success on highway sites with low soil fertility and poor soil structure. A chronology of installation methods, tools, and mechanization possibilities is presented.

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John M. Ruter

A study was conducted with Coreopsis verticillata L. `Moonbeam' and Plumbago auriculata Lam. to evaluate the growth of these perennial plants in 2.6-liter (#1) black plastic containers (BPCs) compared to plants grown in fiber containers with Cu(OH)2 (FCs+) impregnated into the container walls. Coreopsis root and shoot dry weight was unaffected by container type, whereas Plumbago root and shoot dry weight was greater (2.2× and 1.6×, respectively) for plants grown in FCs+ compared to BPCs. The root : shoot ratio of Plumbago increased 30% when plants were grown in FCs+ compared to BPCs. Root circling was effectively controlled for both species grown in the FCs+. FCs remained in salable condition for the duration of the study. In contrast to untreated FCs, FCs+ will have to be removed at transplanting to allow for normal root development.

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Ursula K. Schuch and Dennis R. Pittenger

This study was designed to determine whether trees growing in tall, narrow containers versus regular containers of equal volume, or trees growing in containers coated with cupric hydroxide versus no coating would have a better quality root system, less circling roots, and more biomass production. Ficus (Ficur retusa L. `nitida') and pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius Raddi.) liners were grown for 6 months in the greenhouse in one-gal. containers. Cupric hydroxide coating prevented matting of roots on the side of the root ball in both species and root circling at the bottom of containers in ficus. Pepper trees growing in regular-shaped containers had a higher biomass production versus trees growing in tall containers. Subsequently, trees were transplanted to 3 or 5 gal. containers with shape or coating as described above. For pepper, cupric hydroxide coating versus no coating reduced circling and matting of roots, trees in regular versus tall containers had increased above ground biomass, and trees in 5-gal. versus 3-gal. containers grew more medium and small-sized roots and produced more total biomass.