• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Copyright
 Introduction
 Gladiolus
 Chrysanthemum culture
 Breeding of floral crops
 Insects and mites of floral...
 Diseases of floral crops
 Weed control of floral crops
 Propagation of floral crops
 Post-harvest handling of cut-f...
 Conclusion






Group Title: Research report - Bradenton Agricultural Research & Education Center - GC-1973-8
Title: History of contributions of the Agricultural Research and Education Center- Bradenton to the development of the Florida flower industry
CITATION PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE PAGE TEXT
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00067684/00001
 Material Information
Title: History of contributions of the Agricultural Research and Education Center- Bradenton to the development of the Florida flower industry
Series Title: Bradenton AREC research report
Physical Description: 5 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Woltz, S. S
Agricultural Research & Education Center (Bradenton, Fla.)
Publisher: Agricultural Research & Education Center, IFAS, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Bradenton Fla
Publication Date: 1973
 Subjects
Subject: Cut flower industry -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: S.S. Woltz ... et al..
General Note: Caption title.
General Note: "June 1973."
Funding: Florida Historical Agriculture and Rural Life
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00067684
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Marston Science Library, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Holding Location: Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and the Engineering and Industrial Experiment Station; Institute for Food and Agricultural Services (IFAS), University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida
Resource Identifier: oclc - 71843356

Table of Contents
    Copyright
        Copyright
    Introduction
        Page 1
    Gladiolus
        Page 1
    Chrysanthemum culture
        Page 2
    Breeding of floral crops
        Page 3
    Insects and mites of floral crops
        Page 3
    Diseases of floral crops
        Page 3
    Weed control of floral crops
        Page 4
    Propagation of floral crops
        Page 4
    Post-harvest handling of cut-flowers
        Page 4
    Conclusion
        Page 5
Full Text





HISTORIC NOTE


The publications in this collection do
not reflect current scientific knowledge
or recommendations. These texts
represent the historic publishing
record of the Institute for Food and
Agricultural Sciences and should be
used only to trace the historic work of
the Institute and its staff. Current IFAS
research may be found on the
Electronic Data Information Source
(EDIS)

site maintained by the Florida
Cooperative Extension Service.






Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
of Florida




/3o

AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH & EDUCATION C E UTE LIBRARY
S IFAS, University of Florida
/973 8 Bradenton, Florida

Bradenton AREC Research Report GC-1973-8 G UN un 1973

HISTORY OF CONTRIBUTIONS OF THE AGRICULTURAL RESEAR DU 9 f f Florida
CENTER-BRADENTON TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE FLORIDA I CI..--

S. S. Woltz, Plant Physiologist (ed.), A. W. Engelhard, Asso. Plant
Pathologist, R. O. Magie, Plant Pathologist, F. J. Harousky, Research
Horticulturist (USDA), A. J. Overman, Asso. Nematologist, S. L. Poe,
Asst. Entomologist, G. J. Wilfret, Asst. Geneticist, and W. E. Waters,
Center Director.


INTRODUCTION

The floral industries of Florida have developed rapidly since World War II
into a large segment of Florida agriculture that is still growing rapidly. The
Agricultural Research & Education Center-Bradenton (AREC-B), formerly the Gulf
Coast Experiment Station, has supported this growth by working with the industry
to solve production problems. Activities of the Center have.included research,
development and extension. Center faculty have worked closely with growers in keep-
ing the industry on a sound basis of development. The involvement of the faculty of
the AREC-B has increased concurrently with the rapid growth of the industry; there
are now 8 scientists working on flower research with 2 vacant positions to be staffed
at an early date. Areas of research cover most disciplines: economics, entomology,
genetics, horticulture, nematology, pathology, physiology and soil science.

GLADIOLUS

The oldest and largest-acreage flower crop in Florida is gladiolus. The most
serious problem in gladiolus culture has been Fusarium corm rot, which causes annual
losses approaching two million dollars. Continuing research has been conducted on
this disease. Promising fungicides have been regularly evaluated as they became
available. Heat and additional chemicals to enhance the action of fungicides have
resulted in better Fusarium control by corm dips. Hot water treatments of cormels
have been developed, with and without the addition of fungicides and other chemi-
cals to provide "clean" propagation material. Nutritional studies have indicated
that very high levels of nitrogen increase disease severity considerably. Method-
ology has been developed to determine the extent of hidden Fusarium disease in corm
stocks and also to cross-index various strains of Fusarium with gladiolus varieties
relative to virulence and disease resistance.

Soil Pests. Control of soil diseases, nematodes and insects is usually a serious
problem in Florida because soil temperatures in winter are not low enough to reduce
soil pest populations. Gladiolus, being propagated from cormels or corms that have
been exposed to soil pests, make the problem especially serious because of carry-over
of pests in corms and from old soil to new soil. Methods adaptable to various pro-
duction situations have been developed for soil fumigation and treatment of corms
and cormels. Control of nematodes in corm stocks has been made practical and an
integrated system of soil pest management has made it possible to continue planting
in desirable areas instead of having to move and develop new land. Replanting of
"old land" has been shown to be feasible and economically advantageous. Botrytis,
curvularia and stromatinia diseases on corms have been reduced considerably as pro-
duction problems. Wireworm damage has also been reduced by methods developed for
use of soil insecticides.




/3o

AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH & EDUCATION C E UTE LIBRARY
S IFAS, University of Florida
/973 8 Bradenton, Florida

Bradenton AREC Research Report GC-1973-8 G UN un 1973

HISTORY OF CONTRIBUTIONS OF THE AGRICULTURAL RESEAR DU 9 f f Florida
CENTER-BRADENTON TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE FLORIDA I CI..--

S. S. Woltz, Plant Physiologist (ed.), A. W. Engelhard, Asso. Plant
Pathologist, R. O. Magie, Plant Pathologist, F. J. Harousky, Research
Horticulturist (USDA), A. J. Overman, Asso. Nematologist, S. L. Poe,
Asst. Entomologist, G. J. Wilfret, Asst. Geneticist, and W. E. Waters,
Center Director.


INTRODUCTION

The floral industries of Florida have developed rapidly since World War II
into a large segment of Florida agriculture that is still growing rapidly. The
Agricultural Research & Education Center-Bradenton (AREC-B), formerly the Gulf
Coast Experiment Station, has supported this growth by working with the industry
to solve production problems. Activities of the Center have.included research,
development and extension. Center faculty have worked closely with growers in keep-
ing the industry on a sound basis of development. The involvement of the faculty of
the AREC-B has increased concurrently with the rapid growth of the industry; there
are now 8 scientists working on flower research with 2 vacant positions to be staffed
at an early date. Areas of research cover most disciplines: economics, entomology,
genetics, horticulture, nematology, pathology, physiology and soil science.

GLADIOLUS

The oldest and largest-acreage flower crop in Florida is gladiolus. The most
serious problem in gladiolus culture has been Fusarium corm rot, which causes annual
losses approaching two million dollars. Continuing research has been conducted on
this disease. Promising fungicides have been regularly evaluated as they became
available. Heat and additional chemicals to enhance the action of fungicides have
resulted in better Fusarium control by corm dips. Hot water treatments of cormels
have been developed, with and without the addition of fungicides and other chemi-
cals to provide "clean" propagation material. Nutritional studies have indicated
that very high levels of nitrogen increase disease severity considerably. Method-
ology has been developed to determine the extent of hidden Fusarium disease in corm
stocks and also to cross-index various strains of Fusarium with gladiolus varieties
relative to virulence and disease resistance.

Soil Pests. Control of soil diseases, nematodes and insects is usually a serious
problem in Florida because soil temperatures in winter are not low enough to reduce
soil pest populations. Gladiolus, being propagated from cormels or corms that have
been exposed to soil pests, make the problem especially serious because of carry-over
of pests in corms and from old soil to new soil. Methods adaptable to various pro-
duction situations have been developed for soil fumigation and treatment of corms
and cormels. Control of nematodes in corm stocks has been made practical and an
integrated system of soil pest management has made it possible to continue planting
in desirable areas instead of having to move and develop new land. Replanting of
"old land" has been shown to be feasible and economically advantageous. Botrytis,
curvularia and stromatinia diseases on corms have been reduced considerably as pro-
duction problems. Wireworm damage has also been reduced by methods developed for
use of soil insecticides.




-2-


Fertilizers. Gladiolus are grown commercially in Florida principally on the
light, sandy soils of low native fertility. High annual rainfall rates readily
leach soluble nutrients from the sandy soil. Much attention has been given to the
nutrient requirements of gladiolus as well as possible adverse effects of excesses.
Gladiolus were found to have somewhat lower nutrient requirements than many field-
grown horticultural crops. Response to fertilizer is delayed because of the storage
capacity of corms for fertilizer nutrients and manufactured organic nutrients.
Recommendations have been made available for fertilizer practices for corm and flower
production. While adequate nitrogen was clearly necessary for good production, ex-
cesses were found to increase Fusarium corm rot. Maintenance of adequate levels of
calcium in the soil assures good flower quality and is necessary to avoid physiolog-
ical bud rot and topple in the cut flowers. Boron and iron deficiencies were most
frequently identified as minor element deficiencies in the field and preventive
procedures were developed. Effects of water and soil salinity were evaluated.
Standards were established for measurement of salinity and methods were recommended
for reduction in the adverse effects. A study was made of the effects of fluorides
and air pollution on the life processes of gladiolus. Severe physiological dis-
turbances in leaves caused by minute traces of fluoride were studied in relation
to metabolic change within the leaf.

CHRYSANTHEMUM CULTURE

The spectacular growth during the 1950's of Florida's out-door chrysanthemum
production from a small beginning to a 25 million dollar industry has seldom been
paralleled in other crops. Cut-flowers, pots, and cuttings are produced under
highly intensive culture, with the development of operations which make it imprac-
tical to move regularly to new soils. Procedures for culture, pest control and
maintenance of productive soils have been worked out by the combined efforts of
researchers and the industry so that the yield and quality of products have approached
optimum levels. Methods include those for amending soil to improve aeration and
moisture holding capacity and fumigation or steaming soil without adverse effects.
Fertilization methods were devised to permit maximum production with optimum quality
at harvest, during storage and during consumer use and also with avoidance of re-
lated cultural problems such as disease and physiological disorders. Nutritional
requirements were delineated as well as effects of deficiencies and excesses, for
guidance in crop production. Symptomatology was worked out for deficiencies and
excesses of micronutrients. Methods of fertilizer usage were developed so that
the grower could balance his program in regard to liquid and dry feed as well as
slowly available fertilizers. Fertilization recommendations were tailored to type
of culture and were based on problems with individual nutrient elements. Integrated
pest management was evolved to insure economic production of quality produce that
would not deteriorate during handling and use.

Physiological Disorders of Chrysanthemums. A disorder that appeared to be a
threat to modern chrysanthemum production appeared sporadically in the 1950's
until research revealed that certain amino acids produced by soil microorganisms
were acting as antimetabolites when taken up by the plants. This alarming and
strange malady, called yellow strapleaf, slows plant growth and distorts young
leaves. When soil conditions were made unfavorable to the microorganisms but
favorable to the plants, the frequency of occurrence of the disorder steadily
declined. Another disorder called physiological leaf roll was found to be caused
by the retention of excess carbohydrates (starch and sugars) in the lower leaves.
Symptoms of magnesium deficiency were quite similar to those of physiological leaf
roll but were specifically caused by magnesium deficiency. Culture favoring accu-
mulation of carbohydrates predisposed to leaf roll. Some varieties were more sus-
ceptible to leaf roll than others, with a significant reduction in market quality.




-3-


BREEDING OF FLORAL CROPS

Flower producing industries require a continuing input of new varieties of
crops currently under production as well as of potential new crops to obtain varie-
ties adaptable to Florida growing conditions, and hopefully resistant to ever-
changing crop pests, namely, diseases, insects and nematodes. Full advantage is
taken of the work of plant breeders, and horticulturists over the world to obtain
germ plasm useful for specific qualities. Gladiolus breeding has been in progress
for many years in this program, aimed toward developing disease-resistant varieties
that are horticulturally adaptable and highly productive. A program was undertaken
for development, through asexual propagation and "germ-free" culture, of truly
diosase-free stocks of commercial varieties. These will be necessary for the pro-
duction of disease-free corms for commercial planting and for research advances in
gladiolus cultural techniques. The research program at AREC-Bradenton is oriented
toward making the best use of disease-free corm stocks by providing soil fumigation
and management procedures usable to prevent re-infection. The ornamental breeding
program has been oriented toward producing orchids that may increase commercial
adaptability. New varieties of minor floral crops are being evaluated for possible
use in diversification of operations. New varieties of floral crops are being re-
leased continually; promising varieties are being screened for applicability to
Florida production, particularly with chrysanthemums and carnations.

INSECTS AND MITES OF FLORAL CROPS

Insects and mites cause a large part of the day-to-day production problems for
the Florida flower grower. Control procedures have been developed to permit con-
tinuing floral industry development. Comprehensive recommendations have recently
been made available for control of mites, thrips, chewing insects, aphids and wire-
worms. There is a need for a continuous updating of recommendations for control or
pest management. The problem with mites has been especially difficult because of
mites developing resistance, increased attractiveness of crop plants to mites at
flowering and because a few mites cause rapid deterioration in cut-flower quality.
The relationship of mites to corm and bulb pathogens was defined. It was found
that mites feed on Fusarium and bacteria growing on corms and populations are
severely limited when this food supply is lacking. Factors governing mite popula-
tions have been partially delineated for floral crops in an effort to make control
procedures more effective. Several root mealybugs found on various ornamental
plants were classified and control methods devised. An integrated pest "management"
procedure has been initiated to obtain maximum control of economic problems of
various interrelated pest problems including diseases, insects and mites.

DISEASES OF FLORAL CROPS

Diseases of floral crops present a continuous threat to the industry due to
the warm, frequently moist climate. Diseases persist here in abundance and with-
out adequate pesticides we could not produce floral crops economically in Florida.
Disease control programs must be tailored to meet specific problems. Fungicides
and methods of application have been made available to growers for the control of
leaf, flower, and soil diseases. Methods for control of bacterial diseases have
also been recommended but better control methods are being sought for this diffi-
cult disease problem. New bactericides are continually under investigation. An
important part of the pathology program involves the identification of new diseases
rad the development of methods of control. In recent years, new diseases have been
/ identified on 10 floral crops including aster, carnation, chrysanthemum, gypsophila,
rose, and statice. Control methods have been made available for most of the new
diseases. A broad=spectrum fungicide mixture was developed for chrysanthemums,
With emphasis for safety in use on open flowers under a variety of climatic




-3-


BREEDING OF FLORAL CROPS

Flower producing industries require a continuing input of new varieties of
crops currently under production as well as of potential new crops to obtain varie-
ties adaptable to Florida growing conditions, and hopefully resistant to ever-
changing crop pests, namely, diseases, insects and nematodes. Full advantage is
taken of the work of plant breeders, and horticulturists over the world to obtain
germ plasm useful for specific qualities. Gladiolus breeding has been in progress
for many years in this program, aimed toward developing disease-resistant varieties
that are horticulturally adaptable and highly productive. A program was undertaken
for development, through asexual propagation and "germ-free" culture, of truly
diosase-free stocks of commercial varieties. These will be necessary for the pro-
duction of disease-free corms for commercial planting and for research advances in
gladiolus cultural techniques. The research program at AREC-Bradenton is oriented
toward making the best use of disease-free corm stocks by providing soil fumigation
and management procedures usable to prevent re-infection. The ornamental breeding
program has been oriented toward producing orchids that may increase commercial
adaptability. New varieties of minor floral crops are being evaluated for possible
use in diversification of operations. New varieties of floral crops are being re-
leased continually; promising varieties are being screened for applicability to
Florida production, particularly with chrysanthemums and carnations.

INSECTS AND MITES OF FLORAL CROPS

Insects and mites cause a large part of the day-to-day production problems for
the Florida flower grower. Control procedures have been developed to permit con-
tinuing floral industry development. Comprehensive recommendations have recently
been made available for control of mites, thrips, chewing insects, aphids and wire-
worms. There is a need for a continuous updating of recommendations for control or
pest management. The problem with mites has been especially difficult because of
mites developing resistance, increased attractiveness of crop plants to mites at
flowering and because a few mites cause rapid deterioration in cut-flower quality.
The relationship of mites to corm and bulb pathogens was defined. It was found
that mites feed on Fusarium and bacteria growing on corms and populations are
severely limited when this food supply is lacking. Factors governing mite popula-
tions have been partially delineated for floral crops in an effort to make control
procedures more effective. Several root mealybugs found on various ornamental
plants were classified and control methods devised. An integrated pest "management"
procedure has been initiated to obtain maximum control of economic problems of
various interrelated pest problems including diseases, insects and mites.

DISEASES OF FLORAL CROPS

Diseases of floral crops present a continuous threat to the industry due to
the warm, frequently moist climate. Diseases persist here in abundance and with-
out adequate pesticides we could not produce floral crops economically in Florida.
Disease control programs must be tailored to meet specific problems. Fungicides
and methods of application have been made available to growers for the control of
leaf, flower, and soil diseases. Methods for control of bacterial diseases have
also been recommended but better control methods are being sought for this diffi-
cult disease problem. New bactericides are continually under investigation. An
important part of the pathology program involves the identification of new diseases
rad the development of methods of control. In recent years, new diseases have been
/ identified on 10 floral crops including aster, carnation, chrysanthemum, gypsophila,
rose, and statice. Control methods have been made available for most of the new
diseases. A broad=spectrum fungicide mixture was developed for chrysanthemums,
With emphasis for safety in use on open flowers under a variety of climatic




-3-


BREEDING OF FLORAL CROPS

Flower producing industries require a continuing input of new varieties of
crops currently under production as well as of potential new crops to obtain varie-
ties adaptable to Florida growing conditions, and hopefully resistant to ever-
changing crop pests, namely, diseases, insects and nematodes. Full advantage is
taken of the work of plant breeders, and horticulturists over the world to obtain
germ plasm useful for specific qualities. Gladiolus breeding has been in progress
for many years in this program, aimed toward developing disease-resistant varieties
that are horticulturally adaptable and highly productive. A program was undertaken
for development, through asexual propagation and "germ-free" culture, of truly
diosase-free stocks of commercial varieties. These will be necessary for the pro-
duction of disease-free corms for commercial planting and for research advances in
gladiolus cultural techniques. The research program at AREC-Bradenton is oriented
toward making the best use of disease-free corm stocks by providing soil fumigation
and management procedures usable to prevent re-infection. The ornamental breeding
program has been oriented toward producing orchids that may increase commercial
adaptability. New varieties of minor floral crops are being evaluated for possible
use in diversification of operations. New varieties of floral crops are being re-
leased continually; promising varieties are being screened for applicability to
Florida production, particularly with chrysanthemums and carnations.

INSECTS AND MITES OF FLORAL CROPS

Insects and mites cause a large part of the day-to-day production problems for
the Florida flower grower. Control procedures have been developed to permit con-
tinuing floral industry development. Comprehensive recommendations have recently
been made available for control of mites, thrips, chewing insects, aphids and wire-
worms. There is a need for a continuous updating of recommendations for control or
pest management. The problem with mites has been especially difficult because of
mites developing resistance, increased attractiveness of crop plants to mites at
flowering and because a few mites cause rapid deterioration in cut-flower quality.
The relationship of mites to corm and bulb pathogens was defined. It was found
that mites feed on Fusarium and bacteria growing on corms and populations are
severely limited when this food supply is lacking. Factors governing mite popula-
tions have been partially delineated for floral crops in an effort to make control
procedures more effective. Several root mealybugs found on various ornamental
plants were classified and control methods devised. An integrated pest "management"
procedure has been initiated to obtain maximum control of economic problems of
various interrelated pest problems including diseases, insects and mites.

DISEASES OF FLORAL CROPS

Diseases of floral crops present a continuous threat to the industry due to
the warm, frequently moist climate. Diseases persist here in abundance and with-
out adequate pesticides we could not produce floral crops economically in Florida.
Disease control programs must be tailored to meet specific problems. Fungicides
and methods of application have been made available to growers for the control of
leaf, flower, and soil diseases. Methods for control of bacterial diseases have
also been recommended but better control methods are being sought for this diffi-
cult disease problem. New bactericides are continually under investigation. An
important part of the pathology program involves the identification of new diseases
rad the development of methods of control. In recent years, new diseases have been
/ identified on 10 floral crops including aster, carnation, chrysanthemum, gypsophila,
rose, and statice. Control methods have been made available for most of the new
diseases. A broad=spectrum fungicide mixture was developed for chrysanthemums,
With emphasis for safety in use on open flowers under a variety of climatic







conditions. Methods have been developed for gaseous treatment of cut-flowers to
effectively control post-harvest diseases. Fusarium wilt of chrysanthemum may con-
stitute a problem on plantings that are grown principally in the warmer months.
It was found that a fungicide together with nitrogen supplied mainly in the nitrate
form and with adequate liming (pll 6.5 to 7.0) gave complete disease control.

WEED CONTROL OF FLORAL CROPS

The control of weeds is a serious problem in growing gladiolus, lilies, and
statice. Some herbicides were found to be safe and effective for those crops,
making it possible to practically eliminate weeds with a minimum of very costly
hand labor. In most experiments, cultivated check plots show somewhat lower pro-
duction in comparison to the best herbicide-treated plots, probably because of root
injury by cultivation. Growing gladiolus cormels on weedy soils generally would
be unprofitable without the use of recommended herbicides. Experiments with slowly
soluble fertilizer showed that one application may be enough to grow a crop of
flowers, thus reducing further the need to disturb the soil around plants. Further-
more, placement of the fertilizer where the crop roots can get it may make it less
available to weeds.

PROPAGATION OF FLORAL CROPS

Another segment of the flower production industry, plant propagation, is rapid-
ly developing in Florida and some of its special production problems are being
studied at the Agricultural Research and Education Center-Bradenton. Propagation
of disease-free chrysanthemum and carnation cuttings and gladiolus corms are rela-
tively new multi-million dollar industries in this state, requiring unusual atten-
tion to control of diseases and of the environment, both in growing and storing.
Workers at the AREC-B discovered that flower production and date of bloom could be
controlled by manipulation of photoreriod for Easter lily, using very low intensity
illumination at night.

POST-HARVEST HANDLING OF CUT-FLOWERS

Following harvest, flowers must go through processing, shipping, and usually
storage. They must then perform adequately or there will be less market demand.
Research at the AREC-B is conducted cooperatively with the U.S. Department of
Agriculture and has provided methods by which the post-harvest performance of
living flowers may be improved. Excessive rates of nitrogen fertilizer were found
to shorten the vase-life of chrysanthemums while exposure of the flowers to light -
resultcd in an extension of vase-life. The effects of salts and spec-ificicemiial
elemenlt ound-i-n elt water-abe-ben delineated for cut-flowers. The deleterious
effects of well-water fluoride and salts, previously unidentified, result in damage
to imeprtant flower crops. Techniques were made generally available by which chry-
santhe-umr could be cut in the bud stage and then opened in a solution of sugar and
8-hydroxyquinoline citrate. Flowers may potentially be harvested when desired and
timing of marketing may be better controlled. Shipping of bud-cut chrysanthemums
for opening near destination offers many advantages in terms of handling and escap-
ing the hazards of field conditions. Similar solutions were developed to produce
better quality in gladiolus and gypsophila. Poor performance was shown to be
partly due to restrictions in water uptake caused by physiological plugging of
stems, especially in roses and to a lesser degree in gladiolus. Fluoride in
fluoridated water (1 ppm) was found damaging to gladiolus, gerbere daisies and
poinsettia bracts. The damage was increasingly severe with natural waters as
th- fluoride content increased. Mechanical harvesting of flowers was brought
a step closer to reality by the prospect of being able to harvest once-over and







conditions. Methods have been developed for gaseous treatment of cut-flowers to
effectively control post-harvest diseases. Fusarium wilt of chrysanthemum may con-
stitute a problem on plantings that are grown principally in the warmer months.
It was found that a fungicide together with nitrogen supplied mainly in the nitrate
form and with adequate liming (pll 6.5 to 7.0) gave complete disease control.

WEED CONTROL OF FLORAL CROPS

The control of weeds is a serious problem in growing gladiolus, lilies, and
statice. Some herbicides were found to be safe and effective for those crops,
making it possible to practically eliminate weeds with a minimum of very costly
hand labor. In most experiments, cultivated check plots show somewhat lower pro-
duction in comparison to the best herbicide-treated plots, probably because of root
injury by cultivation. Growing gladiolus cormels on weedy soils generally would
be unprofitable without the use of recommended herbicides. Experiments with slowly
soluble fertilizer showed that one application may be enough to grow a crop of
flowers, thus reducing further the need to disturb the soil around plants. Further-
more, placement of the fertilizer where the crop roots can get it may make it less
available to weeds.

PROPAGATION OF FLORAL CROPS

Another segment of the flower production industry, plant propagation, is rapid-
ly developing in Florida and some of its special production problems are being
studied at the Agricultural Research and Education Center-Bradenton. Propagation
of disease-free chrysanthemum and carnation cuttings and gladiolus corms are rela-
tively new multi-million dollar industries in this state, requiring unusual atten-
tion to control of diseases and of the environment, both in growing and storing.
Workers at the AREC-B discovered that flower production and date of bloom could be
controlled by manipulation of photoreriod for Easter lily, using very low intensity
illumination at night.

POST-HARVEST HANDLING OF CUT-FLOWERS

Following harvest, flowers must go through processing, shipping, and usually
storage. They must then perform adequately or there will be less market demand.
Research at the AREC-B is conducted cooperatively with the U.S. Department of
Agriculture and has provided methods by which the post-harvest performance of
living flowers may be improved. Excessive rates of nitrogen fertilizer were found
to shorten the vase-life of chrysanthemums while exposure of the flowers to light -
resultcd in an extension of vase-life. The effects of salts and spec-ificicemiial
elemenlt ound-i-n elt water-abe-ben delineated for cut-flowers. The deleterious
effects of well-water fluoride and salts, previously unidentified, result in damage
to imeprtant flower crops. Techniques were made generally available by which chry-
santhe-umr could be cut in the bud stage and then opened in a solution of sugar and
8-hydroxyquinoline citrate. Flowers may potentially be harvested when desired and
timing of marketing may be better controlled. Shipping of bud-cut chrysanthemums
for opening near destination offers many advantages in terms of handling and escap-
ing the hazards of field conditions. Similar solutions were developed to produce
better quality in gladiolus and gypsophila. Poor performance was shown to be
partly due to restrictions in water uptake caused by physiological plugging of
stems, especially in roses and to a lesser degree in gladiolus. Fluoride in
fluoridated water (1 ppm) was found damaging to gladiolus, gerbere daisies and
poinsettia bracts. The damage was increasingly severe with natural waters as
th- fluoride content increased. Mechanical harvesting of flowers was brought
a step closer to reality by the prospect of being able to harvest once-over and







conditions. Methods have been developed for gaseous treatment of cut-flowers to
effectively control post-harvest diseases. Fusarium wilt of chrysanthemum may con-
stitute a problem on plantings that are grown principally in the warmer months.
It was found that a fungicide together with nitrogen supplied mainly in the nitrate
form and with adequate liming (pll 6.5 to 7.0) gave complete disease control.

WEED CONTROL OF FLORAL CROPS

The control of weeds is a serious problem in growing gladiolus, lilies, and
statice. Some herbicides were found to be safe and effective for those crops,
making it possible to practically eliminate weeds with a minimum of very costly
hand labor. In most experiments, cultivated check plots show somewhat lower pro-
duction in comparison to the best herbicide-treated plots, probably because of root
injury by cultivation. Growing gladiolus cormels on weedy soils generally would
be unprofitable without the use of recommended herbicides. Experiments with slowly
soluble fertilizer showed that one application may be enough to grow a crop of
flowers, thus reducing further the need to disturb the soil around plants. Further-
more, placement of the fertilizer where the crop roots can get it may make it less
available to weeds.

PROPAGATION OF FLORAL CROPS

Another segment of the flower production industry, plant propagation, is rapid-
ly developing in Florida and some of its special production problems are being
studied at the Agricultural Research and Education Center-Bradenton. Propagation
of disease-free chrysanthemum and carnation cuttings and gladiolus corms are rela-
tively new multi-million dollar industries in this state, requiring unusual atten-
tion to control of diseases and of the environment, both in growing and storing.
Workers at the AREC-B discovered that flower production and date of bloom could be
controlled by manipulation of photoreriod for Easter lily, using very low intensity
illumination at night.

POST-HARVEST HANDLING OF CUT-FLOWERS

Following harvest, flowers must go through processing, shipping, and usually
storage. They must then perform adequately or there will be less market demand.
Research at the AREC-B is conducted cooperatively with the U.S. Department of
Agriculture and has provided methods by which the post-harvest performance of
living flowers may be improved. Excessive rates of nitrogen fertilizer were found
to shorten the vase-life of chrysanthemums while exposure of the flowers to light -
resultcd in an extension of vase-life. The effects of salts and spec-ificicemiial
elemenlt ound-i-n elt water-abe-ben delineated for cut-flowers. The deleterious
effects of well-water fluoride and salts, previously unidentified, result in damage
to imeprtant flower crops. Techniques were made generally available by which chry-
santhe-umr could be cut in the bud stage and then opened in a solution of sugar and
8-hydroxyquinoline citrate. Flowers may potentially be harvested when desired and
timing of marketing may be better controlled. Shipping of bud-cut chrysanthemums
for opening near destination offers many advantages in terms of handling and escap-
ing the hazards of field conditions. Similar solutions were developed to produce
better quality in gladiolus and gypsophila. Poor performance was shown to be
partly due to restrictions in water uptake caused by physiological plugging of
stems, especially in roses and to a lesser degree in gladiolus. Fluoride in
fluoridated water (1 ppm) was found damaging to gladiolus, gerbere daisies and
poinsettia bracts. The damage was increasingly severe with natural waters as
th- fluoride content increased. Mechanical harvesting of flowers was brought
a step closer to reality by the prospect of being able to harvest once-over and





-5-


then open the immature flowers. Other efforts aimed toward mechanical harvesting
included selection of varieties and cultural procedures that would permit uniform
growth and a single harvest.


CONCLUSION

Research on flower production has been conducted continuously at the Bradenton
Research Center for a little over 30 years, during which time Florida has seen many
drastic changes and growth in the industry. It appears that future growth and
stability are dependent on continued research and related activities of research
teams cooperating with an aggressive industry.




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