Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/IR00001773/00001
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Title: Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida
Physical Description: Fact Sheet
Creator: Kelly, R.O.
Publisher: University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, EDIS
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2007
Acquisition: Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Melanie Mercer.
Publication Status: Published
General Note: "Original publication date October, 2007."
General Note: "ENH 1076"
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Source Institution: University of Florida Institutional Repository
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the submitter.
System ID: IR00001773:00001


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ENH1076 Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida1R.O. Kelly, Z. Deng, and B.K. Harbaugh2 1. This document is ENH 1076, one of a series of the Environmental Horticulture Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Original publication date October, 2007. Visit the EDIS Web Site at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu. 2. R.O. Kelly, coordinator/variety trial research; Z. Deng, assistant professor; and B.K. Harbaugh, professor, Environmental Horticulture, Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Cooperative Extension Service, IFAS, University of Florida, Gainesville, 32611. The use of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information. UF/IFAS does not guarantee or warranty the products named, and references to them in this publication does not signify our approval to the exclusion of other products of suitable composition. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A. & M. University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Larry Arrington, DeanFlorida has been an important region for the growing and testing of bedding plants. According to the USDA Floriculture Crops 2005 summary, bedding and garden plants accounted for 51 percent of the wholesale value ($2.61 billion) of all the floricultural crops reported in the United States, while Florida was ranked fifth among all the bedding plant producers in this country. Violas, grouped statistically by the USDA with pansies, were one of the top three bedding plant crops grown in flats ($111 million). Florida ranked second in the United States for the value of potted pansy/violas produced ($3.9 million). Parts of the southeastern United States, and parts of Asia, Europe, and Australia share a similar climate with central Florida. Thus, Florida has also been an important testing ground for new viola cultivars and other bedding plants to be grown and marketed in those regions. Violas, also known as bedding pansies, horned violets, or tufted pansies, are native to Spain and the Pyrenees Mountains (includes Andorra and southern and southwestern France). Like pansies (Viola xwittrockiana), violas [Viola cornuta and V. xwilliamsiana (name used by some seed companies)] have been bred with wild species of violas such as johnny jumpups (Viola tricolor).Figure 1. Viola tricolor. William S. Justice. Courtesy of Smithsonian Institution, Dept. of Systematic Biology, Botany. Credits: William S. Justice Unlike pansies, which have been selected for large flowers, the violas have been repeatedly back-crossed with johnny jumpups. This breeding process has resulted in viola cultivars that can hold up to heat and diseases better than pansies (see EDIS publication ENH 1031 ), as observed season after season in central Florida winter/early spring


Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida 2trials conducted at the University of Floridas Gulf Coast Research and Education Center in Bradenton (2000-2004) and Wimauma (2006), Florida. There are over 150 cultivars of viola available on the market today. Since many of these cultivars are developed and tested in more temperate climates, will these cultivars perform well in Florida, where climate can be harsh at times and rife for the development of plant pests? To answer this question and to select those that can do well in Florida, we conducted five cultivar trials between Dec. 2000 and April 2006. In the early trials, we created classes based upon growth habit (creeping vs. normal) and flower color, and then selected the best performing cultivar (standard) from each class. In each subsequent trial, we compared these class standards with new untested entries from the major seed companies in Europe, Japan, and the United States. Some new entries outperformed the standards and replaced them, while some standards continued to outperform the new entries. On occasion, an entire class would perform poorly, while another class might contain all good performers. Nevertheless, we chose one cultivar to represent each class for subsequent comparisons. This system of standards allowed us to continually upgrade performance without having to re-evaluate large numbers of previously evaluated cultivars; however, if a cultivar was not selected for the standard, but was later improved through further breeding, it could be reevaluated.Field Trials and EvaluationsEach cultivar was planted in two fields. Each field had multiple plots (three or four) planted for each cultivar in different parts of the field to compensate for variations in soil pH and moisture and pest infestations that might occur within different parts of the field and cause differences in plant condition between plots. Each plot contained five or six plants. One field was sprayed (if necessary, after scouting for pests) to simulate a commercial setting and to produce plants in the best possible condition for measuring plant height, width and flower diameter, recording earliness of flowering, and comparing cultivar foliage and flower quality. The other field was not sprayed to observe the effects of plant pests on foliage and flowers as they would appear in a homeowners setting. Ratings were on a scale from 1 to 7 for both fields, with 7 being free from any flaw, such as lack of plant or flowering uniformity, color fading or variability, plant lodging or splitting, or pest symptoms such as insect feeding scars, leaf spots or plant blights, or distortions, discolorations and stunting due to virus infestation; 4 was average, but still acceptable; 1 was poor and unacceptable. The ratings in both fields were taken three to four times during the season to show performance over the entire season, and then the ratings from both fields were combined and averaged to yield an overall performance rating, which was used to select each class standard. Seed was sown in seeder trays (model P-Seed20; Landmark Plastic Corp., Akron, Ohio) and germinated at 72-75F in a growth room illuminated 24 hours a day with cool-white fluorescent tubes. Immediately after germination, seedlings were transplanted into Todd planter flats (model 128; Speedling, Sun City, Fla.) and grown to mature, non-flowering plugs (production stage: 4). Soluble liquid fertilizers (example: 15-2-20 Ca-Mg Excel; Scotts Co., Maryville, Ohio) were applied at 50 to 250 ppm (0.7 to 3.3 oz./100 gal) twice weekly. Low-phosphate fertilizer helped to prevent stretching. To encourage root development, the soil mix (example: Vergro Container Mix A; Verlite Co. Inc., Tampa, Fla.) was kept wet (black and glistening) during germination (radicle emergence; production stage: 1), and moist (black to medium brown) beginning at cotyledon expansion through the development of the first true leaves (production stage: 2 and 3). When seedlings were ready for field planting, the roots formed a firm plug; the soil mix was kept alternately wet with less moisture (light brown), which also helped to lessen plant stretching. To provide optimal conditions for growth, beds, fumigated with a mixture of methyl bromide and chloropicrin, and covered with white-on-black polyethylene film. Plugs were transplanted into raised ground beds 32 inches wide x 8 inches high of EauGallie fine sand (pH range = 6.2 to 6.8); one week later, slow-release fertilizers [example: Osmocote Plus 15-9-12 (5-6 mo.) with


Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida 3micronutrients; The Scotts Co., Maryville, Ohio] were applied by hand to each plant on the soil surface approximately one inch from the plant stem under the plastic mulch.SummaryFrom 2000 to 2006, we evaluated 80 cultivars from 8 seed companies. The following cultivars included those that were selected as class standards, and unique cultivars without comparison (to date). All these cultivars had an overall performance rating 5.5. 'Angel Frosted Yellow Blotch', 'Angel Violet Duet', Angel Violet Blotch', 'Eryln Purple Yellow', 'Four Seasons Yellow With Pink Wing', 'Gem Antique Apricot', 'Gem Antique Lavender', 'Gem Antique Pink', 'Gem Deep Blue', 'Hobbit Bilbo', 'Hobbit Cream With Yellow Lip', 'Hobbit Frodo', 'Hobbit Pure White', 'Hobbit Sam', 'Jewel Lemon Yellow', 'Penny Azure Twilight', 'Penny Beaconsfield', 'Penny Classic Jump-Up', 'Penny Orange Jump-Up', 'Penny Orchid Frost', 'Penny Violet', 'Penny Yellow Jump-Up', 'Princess Lavender Yellow', 'Princess Purple & Gold', 'Rebel Yellow', 'Skippy Red-Gold', 'Skippy White With Violet Wing', 'Sorbet Babyface White', 'Sorbet Babyface Yellow', 'Sorbet Black Delight', 'Sorbet Coconut Swirl', 'Sparkler Purple Orange Face', 'Sparkler Purple Wing', 'Venus Light Blue', and 'Venus Purple'. Detailed performance data of these cultivars are presented in Table 1. Pictures of each cultivar's flower are provided (Table 2). These cultivars can provide Florida growers and gardeners with a great pool of violas from which to choose for their landscaping needs. Though they do not produce gigantic flowers like pansies do, these violas can provide a great variety of color patterns or color combinations and generate large swaths of bright, vibrant colors that hold up very well to harsh conditions and to pests.Additional InformationVisit the seed-propagated bedding plant variety trials athttp://vtgcrec.ifas.ufl.edu for detailed information for all viola cultivars on plant height, width, days to flower, flower divergence, flower size and individual ratings; plot and pest/pest symptom pictures taken during the season, and more flower pictures.NoteThe information in this report is a summary of experimental results and does not provide recommendations for crop production. Where trade names are used, no discrimination is intended or endorsement implied.


Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida 4 Table 1. Plant and flowering characteristics and performance ratings for outstanding viola cultivars with the highest overall performance ratings values for their class in winter/spring trials in Bradenton (2000-04) and Wimauma (2005-06) Florida. Measurements (inches) Cultivar quality Pest Symptoms Cultivar Seed Co. Latest trial year evaluated Plant width Flower dia. Days to first flower Foliage Flower Insects and mites Diseases Overall Performance Angel Frosted Yellow Blotch Floranova 2003 9 1.7 74 5.6 4.2 7.0 6.7 5.9 Angel Violet Duet Floranova 2002 9 1.1 90* 5.3 5.0 6.4 5.4 5.5 Angel Violet Blotch Floranova 2002 8 1.1 108 5.0 5.0 7.0 5.9 5.7 Eryln Purple Yellow Kieft 2003 12 1.2 66 5.3 4.7 6.7 6.3 5.8 Four Seasons Tellow w/Pink Wing Sahin 2003 10 1.3 72 5.5 4.3 7.0 6.5 5.8 Gem Antique Apricot Takii 2004 9 1.0 65 5.1 5.4 7.0 7.0 6.1 Gem Antique Lavender Takii 2004 9 1.1 49 5.0 5.7 7.0 6.3 6.0 Gem Antique Pink Takii 2004 9 1.2 53 5.7 5.9 7.0 6.9 5.9 Hobbit Bilbo Sahin 2003 9 1.5 79 5.5 4.0 7.0 6.8 5.7 Hobbit Cream With Yellow Lip Sahin 2006 7 1.0 46 6.7 6.6 6.7 7.0 6.8 Hobbit Frodo Sahin 2006 12 1.1 63 6.1 6.0 6.3 7.0 6.4 Hobbit Pure White Sahin 2006 9 1.0 56 5.6 6.1 6.8 6.9 6.4 Hobbit Sam Sahin 2006 12 1.1 67 5.9 5.0 5.5 6.9 5.8 Jewel Lemon Yellow Takii 2006 11 0.9 54 6.3 6.3 6.5 7.0 6.5 Penny Azure Twilight Goldsmith 2003 7 1.4 62 5.0 6.2 6.8 6.4 6.1 Penny Beaconsfield Goldsmith 2003 9 1.6 66 5.1 4.6 7.0 6.8 6.9 Penny Classic Jump-Up Goldsmith 2004 9 1.3 48 5.8 5.5 6.9 6.2 6.1 Penny Orange Jump-Up Goldsmith 2003 9 1.2 64 4.5 5.9 6.8 6.7 6.0 Penny Orchid Frost Goldsmith 2001 7 1.3 60 5.3 5.3 6.9 6.4 6.0 Penny Violet Goldsmith 2002 8 1.2 78 5.3 5.3 6.8 5.3 5.6 Penny Yellow Jump-Up Goldsmith 2001 8 1.2 59 5.0 5.0 5.1 6.9 5.5 Princess Lavender Yellow PanAmerican 2001 7 1.2 71 4.7 4.8 6.8 7.0 5.8 Princess Purple & Gold PanAmerican 2001 7 1.1 72 5.4 5.0 5.6 7.0 5.7 Rebel Yellow Ball 2002 9 1.4 107 5.5 5.3 7.0 6.0 6.0 Skippy Red-Gold Kieft 2006 13 1.3 67 5.8 5.3 5.6 6.6 5.8 Skippy White With Violet Wing Kieft 2004 9 1.6 57 6.3 5.3 7.0 5.8 6.1 Sorbet Babyface White PanAmerican 2002 8 1.1 101 4.9 4.4 7.0 5.4 5.5 Sorbet Babyface Yellow PanAmerican 2003 9 1.5 70 5.4 5.8 7.0 6.7 6.1 Sorbet Black Delight PanAmerican 2003 11 1.7 75 5.1 5.0 6.9 6.5 5.9 Sorbet Coconut Swirl PanAmerican 2002 10 1.1 99 5.7 4.8 7.0 6.1 5.9 Sparkler Purple Orange Face Floranova 2003 7 1.3 73 4.7 5.2 6.6 6.5 5.8 Sparkler Purple Wing Floranova 2003 10 1.6 83 5.0 3.8 6.7 6.2 5.5 Venus Light Blue Sakata 2006 11 1.1 52 4.9 4.2 6.3 6.8 5.6 Venus Purple Sakata 2006 12 1.3 60 5.6 4.9 5.6 6.7 5.7


Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida 5 Table 2. Digital images of viola cultivars with the highest overall performance rating values for their class in winter/spring trials in Bradenton (2000-04) and Wimauma (2005-06) Florida. Class1: black Class: blue (dark) Class: blue (dark) with blotch Class: cream Sorbet Black Delight Seed: PanAmerican Gem Deep Blue Seed: Takii Hobbit Sam Seed: Sahin Hobbit Cream With Yellow Lip Seed: Sahin Class: orange with purple, red-violet cap Class: orange shades/tints Class: pink shades/tints Class: Purple (dark), blue-violet with red violet cap Penny Orange Jump-Up Seed: Goldsmith Gem Antique Apricot Seed: Takii Gem Antique Pink Seed: Takii Angel Violet Duet Seed: Floranova Class: purple (dark), blue-violet with dark eye and light cap Class: purple, blue-violet with dark eye and light cap Class: purple, blue-violet/white/cream Class: purple, blue-violet with white Penny Beaconsfield Seed: Goldsmith Angle Violet Blotch Seed: Floranova Sorbet Coconut Swirl Seed: PanAmerican Venus Light Blue Seed: Sakata Class: purple, blue-violet/yellow/white Class: purple (light), blue-violet with yellow face and blotch Class: purple (light), blue violet/yellow/white Class: purple, blue-violet w ith yellow face and blotch Eryln Purple Yellow Seed: Kieft Hobbit Frodo Seed: Sahin Princess Lavender Yellow Seed: PanAmerican Hobbit Bilbo Seed: Sahin Class: purple (dark), red-violet Class: purple (dark), red-violet with light blotch Class: purple (dark), red-violet with orange eye Class: purple (dark), red-violet with yellow eye Penny Violet Seed: Goldsmith Venus Purple Seed: Sakata Sparkler Purple Orange Face Seed: Floranova Princess Purple & Gold Seed: PanAmerican


Class: purple, red-violet with white Class: purple, red-violet/yellow/white Class: red with gold blotch Class: white Evaluation of Viola Cultivars as Bedding Plants for Florida 6 Class: purple, red-violet with white Class: purple, red-violet/yellow/white Class: red with gold blotch Class: white Penny Orchid Frost Seed: Goldsmith Gem Antique Lavender Seed: Takii Skippy Red-Gold Seed: Kieft Hobbit Pure White Seed: Sahin Skippy White With Violet Wing Seed: Kieft Penny Azure Twilight Seed: Goldsmith Sorbet Babyface White Seed: PanAmerican Jewel Lemon Yellow Seed: Takii Class: yellow with blotch Class: yellow with blotch and blue-white cap Class: yellow with pink cap Class: yellow with purple, blue-violet cap Sorbet Babyface Yellow Seed: PanAmerican Angel Frosted Yellow Blotch Seed: Floranova Four Seasons Yellow With Pink Wing Seed: Sahin Penny Yellow Jump-Up Seed: Goldsmith Class: white face with purple (dark), redviolet cap Class: white/yellow to blue color shift Class: white/yellow w/blotch Class: yellow Penny Classic Jump-Up Seed: Goldsmith Sparkler Purple Wing Seed: Floranova Rebel Yellow Seed: Ball Class: yellow/white face with purple (dark), blue-violet cap Class: creeping white/yellow/purple (light) with purple (dark), blue-violet cap Class: creeping yellow