December 2, 2013
Plant Breeder Ping Ren: Breeding Must Meet Consumer And Grower Needs
Jianping (Ping) Ren breeds various seed and vegetatively propagated annuals and perennials for PanAmerican Seed, where she has worked for 13 years. Ren received a Ph.D. in plant breeding in 1998 at Cornell University. Before coming to the floriculture industry, Ren was a vegetable breeder in China with a focus on Brassica vegetables. GG: Will the fervor for all new varieties continue in the industry? Ren: There are so many new varieties each year. It can be confusing and sometimes difficult for growers and consumers to keep up. But we are all looking for “new” things all the time. There has to be something “new” each year. Of course, some new varieties are new for certain improved traits, which are necessary and can benefit breeding companies (high yield, reduced cost), growers (high germ, more uniform) and consumers (better color and garden performance). The more exciting new for the industry is “true” new […]
November 19, 2013
Suntory Flowers Releases Its New Grower’s Guide App
Just in time for spring production, Suntory Flowers introduces the Grower’s Guide app – the first greenhouse production app developed by a flower breeder. Designed for iPad tablets, the fully integrated tool provides complete cultural information for the entire Suntory catalog of varieties. With the portable and user-friendly app, growers can sort crops by temperature, light and fertility requirements and view crop times at a glance. In-depth cultural information is provided for each crop. It’s easy to see how many plants per pot are recommended for 4-inch and 6-inch pots and hanging baskets, along with number of weeks to finish. Growers can customize their Grower’s Guide by selecting the varieties they plan to grow and sell. Award ribbons indicate which varieties have been recognized for landscape performance at leading university trials. Once the Grower’s Guide app is downloaded, all of this vital information is available without access to the internet. […]
November 14, 2013
The Basics & Beyond: Understanding The Differences Between Photoperiodic And Supplemental Lighting
As I talk to growers around the country, I often find that there is confusion between (1) photoperiodic lighting used to create a long day for flower induction of long-day plants and (2) supplemental lighting used to increase the total quantity of photosynthetic light received over the course of the day, which is referred to as daily light integral (DLI) in the greenhouse. For more information on DLI, please visit http://bit.ly/11x79eK To add to the confusion, supplemental lighting is sometimes referred to as photosynthetic or assimilation lighting. In this article, I will attempt to clarify the differences to assist you in selecting the appropriate lighting strategy for your greenhouse crops. Understanding Photoperiodic Lighting The number of hours of light in a 24-hour period (photoperiod) controls flowering of both short-day and long-day crops. It is actually the uninterrupted period of darkness that controls flowering responses. Long-day plants are those that only flower […]
November 14, 2013
Comparing LED Lighting To HPS Lamps For Plug Production
Research at Purdue University is determining how LEDs, providing light of different wavelengths, compare to traditional high-pressure sodium lamps.
November 12, 2013
Producing Freesia As A Greenhouse Crop
Freesia, with its fragrant and prolific spring blooms, is a major cut flower, but can be produced in pots, as well. In this episode of FloriCAST, listen to advice on producing freesia in pots. It might help you serve a niche in your production lineup.
October 17, 2013
Next Generation Coleus Offers Production Advantages
Coleus has been reinvented so many times over the past 50 years that it is often hard to remember what the plants used to be like. Even the scientific name has been reinvented multiple times in just the last five years. What was once known as Coleus blumei became Solenostemon scutellarioides, which then became Plectranthus scutellarioides, where it rests for now. Originally, coleus was a seed-produced crop used primarily as a houseplant. It was also used as an herbal remedy in tea to help folks sleep. That has all changed in the last 20 years with the infusion of sun-tolerant varieties, late-flowering varieties (to avoid deadheading and extend season of performance), new colors and new forms. In the past 10 years, there has been some very nice breeding for landscape performance and heat tolerance. Over and over, this plant has changed until what we grow today is so superior to […]
September 16, 2013
Water Logic Waters Hanging Baskets Only When Needed
Rapid Automated’s innovative new Water Logic tool manages irrigation costs and improves plant quality in a hanging basket system by watering only the plants that need it.
September 13, 2013
Wenke Greenhouses’ Transparent Plug Treatments
As a young plant producer, Wenke Greenhouses is dealing with an issue that’s increasingly important for growers purchasing plugs and liners: How can you make the best decisions for growing a crop if you don’t know exactly what’s been done to those plants before you receive them? President Lisa Ambrosio says the Kalamazoo, Mich., operation is taking two steps to remedy that situation and help customers be more successful with the company’s young plants. Q: What kind of information are you putting together for your plug and liner customers? Ambrosio: We are in the process of creating information sheets this year. We have two versions. One is designed for the grower who is getting the product so they will know more about what we did to the crop in producing it. For example, if we used growth regulators or insecticides on the crop, they will be aware of that and […]