LANDSCAPE PERFORMANCE OF ANNUAL BEDDING PLANTS TREATED WITH FOLIAR APPLICATION OF SILICON AND TITANIUM
The U.S. floriculture market, composed of cut flowers and foliage, propagation material, potting and bedding plants, was estimated at $4.37 billion in 2015. Bedding plants represent the main segment, having a share of $1.2 billion dollars. Bedding plants are produced using greenhouse production for availability of the product to match the market demand and quality assurance. This production uses several technologies, such as the use of soilless media, which provide feasibility and good physical structure for plant growth, but little or no nutritional availability. The quality of bedding plants is very dependent on an adequate nutritional fertilization. Researches have shown that besides essential macro- and micronutrients, beneficial nutrients can improve growth, development, and quality in certain growing conditions and species. Silicon (Si) and titanium (Ti) have demonstrated improvements in the quality and growth of certain bedding plants in greenhouse production but information is lacking as to whether these benefits enhance landscape performance. This research examined the greenhouse and landscape performance (plant growth and quality) of four annual bedding plants treated with foliar applications of Si and Ti in separate experiments. The four annual plant species were selected based on popularity were geranium (Pelargonium x hortorum 'Black velvet rose F1'), vinca, (Catharanthus roseus 'Mega Bloom Pink Halo F1'), zinnia (Zinnia hybrid 'Double Hot Cherry') and impatiens (Impatiens walleriana 'Accent White'). Sodium silicate (NaSiO3) supplied by foliar treatments of 0, 50, 150 and 250 mg Si·L- 1 and Ti-ascorbate (Tytanit®) supplied by foliar treatments of 0, 50, 100 and 150 mg Ti·L-1. This study will be conducted in two growing seasons (2018/2019) to decrease environmental effects. The treatment applications will be applied 4 weeks before plants reach the marketable size for impatiens, vinca, and zinnias, and 7 weeks for geraniums. Data will be collected before treatment application inside of the greenhouse and after transplanted to the field every 15 days. Production will follow common commercial greenhouse. The data gathered will assess growth and quality traits (height, number of leaves and flower, stem diameter and plant, days to flower, the diameter of flower, and chlorophyll content). Before frost, plants will be destructively harvested to measure fresh and dry weight. The effect of foliar applications of Si and Ti on the growth and quality traits of selected annual bedding plants in the greenhouse and landscape performance will be determined.
Pereira, Vania Maria, "LANDSCAPE PERFORMANCE OF ANNUAL BEDDING PLANTS TREATED WITH FOLIAR APPLICATION OF SILICON AND TITANIUM" (2019). University Research Symposium. 289.