OFA Bulletin January/February 2012 : Page 1

January/February 2012 • N u m b e r 9 3 1 January/February 2012 • Number 931 Managing Photosynthetic Light During Liner Production By Roberto G. Lopez and Christopher J. Currey D uring this time of year, ambient outdoor light levels are at seasonally low levels across the United States. Inside a greenhouse light may be further reduced by 40 percent to 70 percent due to the greenhouse structure, glazing material and age, energy curtains, overhead baskets, and a host of other factors. This may raise a few questions. How low is low with light? With a large volume of young plant production occurring during this time, what impact does light have on rooted cutting (liner) production timing and quality? Our objectives in this article are to review some concepts including the relationship between light measurements, photosynthesis, and plant growth; discuss the impact of daily light integral (DLI) during the production of liners; and provide general guidelines and recommendations for increasing the DLI inside your propagation greenhouse. Light First, we need to focus on the light that plants utilize for photosynthesis, which influences growth and quality. Most growers use instantaneous foot-candle (f.c.) meters to measure light in the greenhouse. These “photometric” units are based on Continued on page 5 Containers for Four Seasons: A Step-by-Step Guide to Year-Round Container Gardening By Rita Randolph Editor’s Note: Rita is the author of Taunton Press/ Fine Gardening ’s CONTAINER GARDENING issue 2009. Portions of this article are reprinted with permission from that special issue. Containers for Your Collection There are all levels of gardeners – from the youngest child with novice dirty hands, to Master Gardeners, to professional growers and retailers. And then there are the true nerds, plant-crazy collectors and hard-core horticulturists that want to add the new, most sought-after items to their collection. These perpetually plant-hungry people have the drive to collect plants, and when they find a cool new one, they may not want to put it in the ground. Containers are a perfect way to house your collection until it grows a little bit more or you eventually find the perfect place for it. Many plants and combinations in my “collection” have lived in containers for years, with only periodic repotting and changing of their Continued on page 8 Inside this Edition ... Managing Photosynthetic Light During Liner Production 1 Scheduling Bedding Plants for Energy-Efficient Production Using Biologicals in Ornamental Crop Production Minimizing Future Debt & Cash Flow Problems Effective Accident Investigations Key to Injury Prevention Strategy 10 13 23 25 Florists Buying Local – What Flower Farmers Need to Know Mary Jane Weals Retires from OFA OFA Member Spotlight OFA News 26 28 29 30 Containers for Four Seasons: A Step-by-Step Guide 1 to Year-Round Container Gardening Collaboration is Our Middle Name Improve Your Google Places Page & Other Tips – Part 2 2 3 OFA Bulletin This is a member benefit of OFA – The Association of Horticulture Professionals. 1

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