2 Mar 2020
Consumer Involvement with and Expertise in Water Conservation and Plants Affect Landscape Plant Purchases, Importance, and Enjoyment
Bridget K. Behe (Michigan State University), Melinda Knuth and Charles Hall (Texas A&M), Patricia T. Huddleston and R. Thomas Fernandez (Michigan State University)
The strain on potable water supplies heightens the competition for water resources and potentially reduces the demand for landscaping. Therefore, we conducted an online survey to ascertain expertise, involvement, and importance of water conservation and landscaping. Cluster analysis results identified two segments: Actively Interested in Water Conservation and Disinterested in Water Conservation. Findings suggest that pro-water-conserving attitudes are found among consumers who value outdoor landscapes and those individuals who spend more on plants. Results suggest that professionals should focus messaging efforts on low water use cultivar selection and operationalizing water-conserving behaviors more than convincing consumers that plants are important.
Beheetal WaterConservationandPlants (112 KB)
6 Jan 2020
Water Conserving Irrigation Practices, Plant Growth, Seasonal Crop Coefficients, and Nutrition of Container-Grown Woody Ornamentals
R. Thomas Fernandez, Nicholas A. Pershey, Jeffrey A. Andresen, and Bert M. Cregg (Michigan State University)
Container nursery irrigation practices often result in over-application leading to nutrient leaching and reduced growth. Our objectives were to compare growth and foliar nutrient content for plants under control (19 mm or ¾ inch daily) and 3 daily water use (DWU) based irrigation treatments; determine DWU of 14 woody plants; and classify plants into irrigation groups. Average DWU ranged between 2.1 and 22.0 mm. Most DWU-based treatments resulted in less water applied than the control, yet plant growth was not reduced. Lower foliar P and K concentrations were found for several taxa in control versus DWU treatments.
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16 Dec 2019
Reducing Water and Pesticide Movement in Nursery Production
Damon E. Abdi and R. Thomas Fernandez (Michigan State University)
Ornamental nurseries produce a large number of plants in a concentrated area where high inputs of water, nutrients, and pesticides are used. Nursery production further increases inputs because container substrates are designed to quickly drain and overhead irrigation is the primary method of irrigation. A large proportion of water or pesticides land on nontarget areas in the spaces between containers, creating runoff contaminant issues. Water is the primary means of pesticide movement in nursery production. This review discusses water and pesticide dynamics and management strategies to conserve water and reduce pesticide and water movement during container nursery production.
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25 Nov 2019
Seeing inside your container media
Paul Fisher, Erin Yafuso, and Enna Bohorquez (University of Florida)
When you buy a good-quality root substrate, you are mostly purchasing holes. Solid particles from peat, bark, perlite, wood fiber and other components typically make up only about 20 to 30% of volume when a pot is filled with root substrate. The rest is made up of spaces, termed pores, which are filled with either air or water. It is difficult to visualize substrate physical properties such as porosity, but pores have a major effect on plant performance. In this article, we will try to help you see pores in a new light.