Want Better Rooting During Propagation? Try A Fungicide. [Sponsor Content]

Verbena estrella 'Voodoo Star.' The top row is untreated. The bottom row was treated with Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide at 4 oz/100 gallons at sticking. This image was taken several days after sticking.
Verbena estrella ‘Voodoo Star.’ The top row is untreated. The bottom row was treated with Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide at 4 oz/100 gallons at sticking. This image was taken several days after sticking.

Keeping plants nourished and protected from insects and diseases leads to overall healthy plants, of course. But fungicides, BASF’s Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide in particular, can improve rooting and plant development when used during the propagation process. Research on verbena, evolvulus, poinsettia and ornamental grasses shows that using fungicides at the time of sticking and up to three days later can result in these benefits.

Let’s look at the research. Trials were conducted by Paul Pilon of Perennial Solutions Consulting on verbena ‘Voodoo Star’ and evolvulus ‘Hawaiian Blue Eyes.’ Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide was applied to liner trays of these varieties about two hours after sticking. Other trays were treated four days after sticking. Both groups were treated using application rates of 4 oz/100 gallons or 8 oz/100 gallons.

After 16 days, all liners treated with Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide showed more nodes, larger leaves, thicker roots and greater root mass compared to untreated plants. These benefits were more pronounced on the liners treated with Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide on day of sticking.

In parallel research conducted on poinsettia ‘Prestige Early Red,’ the story is largely the same. An interesting finding, however, is that while using a 8 oz/100 gallon rate applied on the day of sticking resulted in more root mass, the amount of rooting was significantly less than observed with the 4 oz/100 gallon rate applied at the same time.

Guidelines For Using Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide In Propagation

Here are more details on using fungicides during propagation to improve plant health from Perennial Solutions Consulting’s Paul Pilon.

1. For the best results, apply Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide at the 4 oz/100 gallons rate on the day the cuttings are stuck or the following day. If application can’t be make during this timeframe, using the 8 oz/100 gallons rate could still result in the rooting benefits.

2. Allow the fungicide to remain on foliage for 30 minutes or longer before resuming misting. Pilon suggests applying Pageant Intrinsic Brand Fungicide as the last or first mist of the day to maximize absorption.

3. While the 4 oz/100 gallons rate can result in rooting benefits, it may not be sufficient to protect plants against disease. For disease control, increase the rate to 8 oz/100 gallons. Growers should actually avoid using the highest recommended rate, as this could reduce rooting benefits. Many growers have been successful using 6.0 oz/100 gallons. This seems to be the standard rate used by a number of propagators according to Pilon.

4. Growers should observe the effect this treatment has on their crops. It could result in decreased misting requirements, less disease pressure and reduced propagation times, Pilon says.

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