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Jozer Mangandi, Sydney Park Brown, and Natalia Peres

). Growing roses in Florida can be successful without these maintenance practices by selecting vigorous and disease resistant or tolerant cultivars. The purpose of our study was to develop recommendations of shrub roses for landscape use in central Florida

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William E. Klingeman, Gretchen V. Pettis, and S. Kristine Braman

In past surveys, lawn care and landscape maintenance professionals have reported their willingness to adopt Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies and use nonchemical pest management alternatives ( Braman et al., 1998a ; Garber and Bondari

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Traci Armstrong, J.E. Wolfe III, J.C. Bradley, and J.M. Zajicek

Ornamental grasses are currently growing in popularity and are being used in parks, public plantings, and commercial landscapes. This study was developed to determine the esthetic appeal of 12 ornamental grasses and evaluate public attitude toward the use of these grasses in low-maintenance landscapes. Grasses were selected for this evaluation using the following criteria: recommendations of experts in the ornamental grass field; material used in the nursery trade; and recommendations in popular literature. Two field sites were prepared and planted in the Spring 1991 and 1992. Both sites were maintained and irrigated to enhance the survivability of the grasses. The survey was conducted on several dates in the Fall 1992. Participants responded to questions regarding ornamental grass use, and the need for research on water conservation in landscapes. In addition, participants were asked to rank the individual grass species as to their accept-ability for landscape use. The results of the survey indicate that visual aesthetics are a major factor in public acceptance of landscape materials. In addition, the majority of ornamental grasses tested in this study were acceptable alternatives for low-maintenance landscapes with native and introduced species equal in performance.

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Wojciech J. Florkowski, Carol D. Robacker, Joyce G. Latimer, and S. Kristine Braman

A survey indicated that the landscape maintenance and lawn care industry of the Atlanta metro area was localized in densely populated counties with a high concentration of commercial activity and residential housing. A relatively young age and limited size of most of the firms suggested a lack of barriers to entering the industry, which was supported by gross sales and equipment owned by surveyed companies. Most firms generated no more than $100,000 in sales in 1993 and owned equipment valued at less than $25,000. Most residential accounts were under 10 acres.

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Andrew L. Thomas and Denny Schrock

Hundreds of perennial plant species native to the midwestern United States have potential as ornamentals, but information on how best to use such plants in the landscape remains scarce. Many horticulturists are looking for species that perform well under low-maintenance conditions and that also attract and benefit desirable fauna, such as butterflies and birds. While many of our native plants may fit into this category, not all such species will meet aesthetic criteria for home landscapes. Some native species respond to seasonal changes in temperature and rainfall by browning or going dormant. Others have very specific site requirements for moisture, soil, and humidity that may be difficult to meet in an urban landscape, or their size, growth habit, or other characteristics may make them aesthetically undesirable in the typical home landscape. This study evaluated the performance of 67 plant taxa native to the midwestern United States selected for their promising potential in a low-maintenance landscape situation.

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Louis B. Anella*, Keith Reed, P.I. Erickson, and Janet C. Cole

Although roses have long been an important landscape plant, there is a growing interest in the use of low-maintenance roses that do not require heavy pruning or spraying. Poulsen Roser Pacific, Inc. of Central Point, Oregon, provided three plants of 48 cultivars for a trial in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The plants were produced in Oregon by grafting cultivars on seedling Rosa multiflora rootstock. Two-year-old plants were shipped bare-root to Stillwater, Oklahoma where they were planted in the field in early April, 2001. The plants were placed in three randomized complete blocks (rows) with 90 cm spacing between plants and 240 cm spacing between rows. The plants were drip irrigated as needed. During the 2002 growing season the roses were evaluated weekly for flower number, black spot, and overall quality. Four rose cultivars from Poulsen's Town and Country® series of landscape roses, Martha's Vineyard™ (`Poulans'), followed by Madison™ (`Poulrijk'), Kent™ (`Poulcov'), and Tumbling Waters™ (`Poultumb'), had the highest average flower number. Martha's Vineyard™, Kent™, and Tumbling Waters™ also rated highest among the cultivars tested for overall plant quality and black spot resistance. Other roses in the top grouping (Waller-Duncan K-ratio t test) for black spot resistance and overall quality were: Ragtime™ (`Poultieme', a climber from the Courtyard® series), Sophia Renaissance® (`Poulen002', Renaissance® series), Nashville™ (`Poulbico', Town and Country® series), Redwood™ (`Poultry', National Parks® series), Julia Renaissance® (`Poulheart', Renaissance® series), Santa Barbara™ (`Pouloesy', Town and Country® series), and Everglades™ (`Poulege', National Parks® series).

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Reuben B. Beverly, Wojciech Florkowski, and John M. Ruter

In response to a mail survey of the landscape maintenance and lawn care (LM-LC) industry in metropolitan Atlanta, we learned that 76% of respondents fertilized lawns and turf and 68% fertilized ornamental beds. Less than one-fourth of those who provided fertilization services offered an organic fertility option; for those who reported an organic option, an average of 25% of their residential customers used such a service. Complete fertilizers (N-P2O5-K2O), ammonium nitrate, urea, and N solutions were the products applied by most respondents. Average amounts of N per application were ≈1.5 lb/1000 ft2 on lawns and 1.1 lb/1000 ft2 on ornamentals. Of firms that provide fertilization services, 88% use a predetermined application schedule, whereas 88% use visual observation and 69% use soil testing to guide fertilizer management. Only 5% reported using tissue analysis as a fertilizer management strategy. Nitrogen fertilizers were applied most frequently in the spring, with nearly equal amounts applied in summer and fall. Phosphorus was applied most commonly in the fall or spring. Relatively few firms reported applying significant amounts of either N or P in winter. Most respondents indicated that they received adequate information about fertilizers, but few received information about organic fertilization. Commercial sales representatives and trade magazines were cited most often as sources of information; university specialists were the least-cited formal source of information concerning fertilization. We have suggested some research and educational issues to be addressed based on these results.

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Wojciech J. Florkowski, Carol Robacker, and Paul Thomas

Managers and employees of landscape maintenance and lawn care industry (LM/LC) applying pesticides can prevent pollution. Adequate information about application of herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, and nematicides is a prerequisite for proper application. A survey, prepared by an interdisciplinary research team “Ornamentals Working Group,” was implemented in 1994 to Atlanta metro area firms. The gross return rate was 25.4%. The majority of respondents had 10 or fewer years of experience in providing landscape services; had at least 13 years of schooling; and were in their thirties or forties. The categorical nature of dependent variables suggested ordered probit procedure as the statistical estimation method. Independent variables included characteristics of the respondent, firm characteristics, and information sources about the application of a specific pesticide. Extension and research personnel and commercial representatives were important information sources about insecticide and fungicide application. The use of all three sources of information by the LM/LC industry seems to depend on pesticide type, with commercial representatives, and extension and research personnel often acting as complementary information sources.

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Jeffery K. Iles, Steven C. Padgitt, Peggy Petrzelka, and Wendy K. Wintersteen

A survey was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of Iowa State University (ISU) extension programs and services to the turfgrass, nursery, and landscape plant installation and maintenance industries in Iowa. Completed questionnaires were received from 294 individuals (55% response rate). Respondents indicated they have a continuing need for pest identification and management information and that ISU extension is an important source for this information. In general, most respondents said quality of information provided by ISU extension was better than that offered by horticultural consultants or product suppliers; however, only 48% said extension was doing very well delivering programs and information in a timely manner. Demand for on-site visits with extension specialists was greater than that for distance learning opportunities, suggesting that extension must do a better job of marketing and making relatively new communication technologies palatable.

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S.M. Scheiber and Richard C. Beeson Jr.

Petunia ×hybrida Vilm. `Midnight' plants were grown in drainage lysimeters to evaluate growth in response to alternative irrigation strategies. Irrigation treatments were tensiometer-regulated automatic irrigation systems, regularly scheduled irrigation using an automated controller, and human perception of plant irrigation need (manual watering). Mean irrigation volumes were reduced by manual watering and tensiometer-regulated treatments, compared to the automated controller. Total mean irrigation volume applied by the automated controller (460 L) was significantly greater than received by the manually watered (293 L) or tensiometer-regulated (286 L) treatments. Regularly scheduled irrigation using an automated controller resulted in higher assimilation rates, final shoot dry mass, final biomass, shoot to root ratios, and growth indices compared to other irrigation methods tested. Assimilation rates were significantly higher for tensiometer-controlled irrigation than the manually watered treatment, but no differences were reported between these two treatments for growth parameters. Visual observations indicated aesthetic quality was compromised among tensiometer-regulated and manually watered treatments relative to the automated controller treatment.