Title: Vegetarian
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00087399/00065
 Material Information
Title: Vegetarian
Series Title: Vegetarian
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publisher: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication Date: May 1971
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00087399
Volume ID: VID00065
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

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FLORIDA COOPERATI'./E EXTENSION SERVICE
(' UNIVERSITY OF FL(OII -IA
-, INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES

Vegetable Crops Department




George A. larlowe, Jr. James Montelaro
Chairman Vegetable Crops Specialist

Thomas G. Hart James N. Stephens
Assistant Vegetable Crops Specialist Assistant Vegetable Crops Specialist

James R. Hicks
Assistant Vegetable Crops Specialist


May 4, 1971


TO: COUNTY EXTENSION TLIPECTO'.S AN'D VEGETABLE AGENTS

VEGETARIAN (93)

I THIS ISSUE:

I. Sidedressin- Watermelons
II. Potato Seed-Piece Treatment
III. Fertilizer Salt Injury to Germinating Crops
IV. Improved Seedling Development Techniques
(a) "Plug-Mix" Seeding Method
(b) Containerized Transplant Production


I. Sidedressing Watermelons

In the last issue of the Vegetarian, combinations of ammonium
nitrate and potassium nitrate were suggested as good sidedressing materials
for watermelons. This was not meant to exclude the many other materials
available for this purpose and which can be used to good advantage.

Included are such materials as nitrate of soda-potash, sulfate of
potash, muriate of potash, calcium nitrate, sodium nitrate, certain liquid
mixtures, etc. Growers should understand the factors involved which affect
selection of the material for sidedressing. Factors such as pH, calcium
and sodium levels, soluble salt levels, amounts of nitrogen and potassium
in the soil, stage of plant development, plant condition, temperature, etc.,
should be considered. Certain changes in one or two of the above factors
might tend to make one or a combination of the materials listed more or
less beneficial than others. Selection of the right source is just as
important as amount of nutrients and timing of sidedressings.

II. Potato Seed-Piece Treatment

Almost without fail each season potato growers somewhere in Florida
experience problems associated with emergence of seedlings. In many cases


COOPERATi -IV EXTENSION WORK IN AGRICULTURE AND HOMiE ECONOMICS, :TATE OF FLORIDA. IFAS. UNIVERSITY
OF FLORIDA U, S. DEPARnTMEfNT OF AGCICULTURE. AND BOAR05 OF COUNTY CONMMISSIONLiRS COOPERATING





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stands are reduced, subsequent disease problems are intensified and
finally yield and grade are often reduced significantly. The relatively
new Potato Seed Regulation of the Florida Department of Agriculture has
done much in recent years to alleviate the above problem.

However, more needs to be done. Some very promising research
work on seed-piece treatment, now in its second year at Hastings, offers
excellent promise. Dr. Weingartner has made some interesting observations
in his studies. First, he noted that treatment of seed pieces in all
cases resulted in earlier emergence of plants than in untreated plots.
(NOTE Earlier emergence did not necessarily result in better stands or
increased yields.) Secondly, he observed significant benefits from seed-
piece treatment when poor quality potato seed was used or where environ-
mental conditions were not good for seedling emergence.

The four materials tested were Polyram, Manzate 200, Dithane M-45
and Captan. All four performed very well. The added insurance against
seed-piece decay, which can be gained at a nominal cost by the use of
the materials listed, makes potato seed-piece treatment a worthwhile
practice for potato growers in Florida.

III. Fertilizer Salt Injury to Germinating Crops

The writer recently observed a newly-seeded vegetable field where
a very small quantity of soluble fertilizer was placed in contact with
the seed in the drill. The only spot in the whole field where germination
was satisfactory was where the distributor was cut-off for a short
distance in the middle of the field. The land had already been adequately
supplied with fertilizer applied broadcast and disked into the soil. The
additional "in the drill" fertilizer could offer very little benefit
and, as expected, could result in severe injury to seedlings.

Fertilizer salt applications in the seed drill, above the seed
drill, directly below the seed drill, or too close to the sides of the
drill are definitely not recommended. The only exception to this is the
possible use of not more than one-hundred pounds of superphosphate in
the drill. This material has a low salt index and can be beneficial
when soil phosphorus is not available for one reason or another. One
thing to remember is that young seedlings can be injured at much lower
salt levels than the same plants at a more advanced stage of growth.

IV. Improved Seedling Development Techniques

To enumerate the many hazards that seeds and seedlings are sub-
jected to in the field would require considerable space in newsletters.
Growers recognize the importance of getting a good, uniform stand of
a vegetable crop off to a fast start. Much research effort now is being
directed to the solution of this problem. Such things as seed sizing
and precision seeding have been discussed in past newsletters. Seed
pre-conditioning, seed tapes, pelleted seed, etc., are other methods
being tested commercially. Two rather recent developments in this area
that Florida vegetable growers should look into are:









(a) "Plug-TMix" Seeding Method

Starting with an idea three years ago, ir. N. C. Hayslip
has evolved a technique which shows great promise for planting small
seeded crops. Basically, the plug-mix approach is a direct seeding
method whereby seed is placed in a matrix of carrying media, slow-
release nutrients and water. A predetermined amount of the mixture is
plugged into a slight depression in the soil and lightly compressed.
With careful irrigation and other practices to reduce salt injury,
temperature injury, etc.,, the plug-mix method is capable of producing
uniform, vigorous stands of certain vegetable crops. (NOTE Mechanization
of plug-mix application will certainly make the technique even more worth-
while in the future.)

(b) Containerized Transplant Production

There has been a significant increase in the amount of
research and development work being done on the production of containerized
vegetable transplants. Some of this work is being done by manufacturers
of various types of plant containers, private companies and grower groups.
Considerable acreage of trellised tomatoes grown on full-bed plastic
cover this season was started with containerized transplants. Interest
is, also, developing rapidly among growers of other vegetable crops. It
will be interesting over the next few years to watch developments in
use of direct seeding and transplants and to see which of the two methods
becomes the accepted practice.









Prepared by:







/ XJames Hontelaro
SProfessor (Vegetable Crops Specialist)




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