OFA Bulletin March/April 2011 : Page 2

OFA Mission Statement To support and advance professional horticulture. OFA – The Association of Horticulture Professionals Growing Tips for Snow Princess ® Lobularia by Brian Whipker & Ingram McCall 2130 Stella Court Columbus, Ohio 43215-1033 USA 614-487-1117 Fax: 614-487-1216 ofa@ofa.org www.ofa.org S now Princess® is an exciting new Lobularia hybrid . It is an extremely vigorous plant that has a growing habit similar to a vegetative petunia. Consumers love the plant because of its flowing mass of white flowers. While it is related to seed alyssum, its growth characteristics are totally different. What We Found Plant growth was maximized with fertilization rates between 132 to 250 ppm N (Figure 1). Substrate E.C. levels are provided in Figure 2. Over time, when 300 and 400 ppm N was applied, the E.C. levels increased. Accumulations indicate that the plant was not utilizing all of the fertility provided and the fertilization rates were excessive. Photographs of the plants at finish are contained in Figure 3. The proportion of blooms to leaves was very good with 100 ppm N. Plant growth was maximized with 200 ppm N. Plants grown with 50 and 75 ppm N were smaller and lacked fullness. Plants fertilized with 300 and 400 ppm N were stunted because of excessive E.C. levels. OFA Bulletin March/April 2011 NUMBER 926 Editorial Staff Editor Stephen A. Carver, Ph.D. Laura Kunkle Contributors Laura Brannon Holly Buchanan James E. Faust Kathy Fediw Paul R. Fisher Gary Hudson Brian Jackson Morgan Jenkins Allison Justice Kelly Lewis Ingram McCall Bill McCurry Vijay Rapaka Rick Schoellhorn Robert L. Wick Kimberly A. Williams Robert Wright Growers may find greenhouse production to be challenging. Its aggressive growth habit means that it can overwhelm other plants in a mixed container and it requires frequent irrigations. Because of the unique characteristics of Snow Princess®, there is a need for additional greenhouse cultural information. Solutions to both of these challenging characteristics were investigated and can be solved with the incorporation of some simple cultural techniques. This article summarizes a series of experiments conducted at North Carolina State University which determined optimal fertility rates, pH ranges, nutritional disorders, physiological disorders, and insect problems (A free color guide is available as a pdf at www.fine-americas.com/Content/News. asp?arch=1). Appreciation is expressed to Proven Winners and Fine Americas for project funding. This article provides detailed information of Best Management Practices for successfully growing Snow Princess® Lobularia hybrid . Recommendations Snow Princess® plants grew very well with balanced N-P-K fertilizer with all the macro-and micronutrients. The target pH range is between 6.0 and 6.5. Given Philip F. Harmon Brian Whipker 1. What is the Optimal Fertility Level for Growing Snow Princess®? To answer this, we transplanted 84 cell plugs into 5-inch round pots containing Berger BM6 on February 3. We irrigated different sets of plants with 50, 75, 100, 200, 300, or 400 ppm N. The fertilizer used was Proven Winners Professional 14-3-14 with minors, formulated for low alkalinity water with FeEDDHA. The plants were given a second pinch on February 12. Five plants from each of the fertilization rates were sampled after two, four, and six weeks of growth. We measured plant height, diameter, PourThru pH and electrical conductivity (E.C.), and dry weight. The amount of growth (height, diameter, and dry weight) for each fertilization rate was calculated over time by a growth index equation. Figure 1. The calculated growth index after six weeks of growth for Snow Princess ® Lobularia grown with 50, 75, 100, 200, 300, or 400 ppm N. Published Bimonthly Copyright © OFA 2011. Permission is hereby given to reprint articles appearing in this OFA Bulletin provided the following reference statement appears with the reprinted article: “Reprinted from the OFA Bulletin, (phone: 614-487-1117) March/April 2011, Number 926.” No endorsement is intended for products mentioned in this OFA Bulletin, nor is criticism meant for products not mentioned. The authors and OFA assume no liability resulting from the use of practices printed in this OFA Bulletin. Figure 2. Electrical conductivity (E.C.) values over time for Snow Princess ® Lobularia grown with 50, 75, 100, 200, 300, or 400 ppm N. 2 OFA Bulletin

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