Title: Environmental horticulture news
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00089447/00003
 Material Information
Title: Environmental horticulture news
Series Title: Environmental horticulture news
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Environmental Horticulture Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publisher: Environmental Horticulture Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: Spring/Summer 2002
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00089447
Volume ID: VID00003
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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nm mental Spring/Summer 2002 Vol. 8 No. 1

horticulture NEWS

The Bulletin of the Environmental Horticulture
Department at the University of Florida

Student Club Tours Northern California

This year the University of Florida Environmental Horti-
culture Student Club used their time between semesters to
experience horticulture in northern California. Sixteen stu-
dents and two advisors flew to San Francisco for the first
part of their trip. As part of a diverse and ambitious itiner-
ary, they visited the Downtown Flower Market, Alcatraz, and
the inspiring Muir Woods with its towering redwoods and gi-
ant sequoias. They visited a large production greenhouse
operation at the Nurserymen's Exchange, and enjoyed an
afternoon in Golden Gate Park's formal Japanese tea garden
and the Strybing Arboretum.
Leaving the San Francisco area, the group headed south,
touring the formal Filoli Gardens. Goldsmith Seeds was next
on the schedule, followed by a guided tour of the renowned
Pebble Beach Golf Course. While in Monterey, they stopped
at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and enjoyed the ocean views
along the fabled "Seventeen Mile Drive." Driving north a
few hours, the group toured Hines Nursery to see woody plant
production at its best, and en-
joyed an afternoon tour of the
Robert Mondavi Winery's vine-
yard. The tour's last day took
them to the University of Cali-
fornia at Davis to tour the col-
lection greenhouses of the Bot-
any Department, the mile-long
UCD arboretum and the facili-
ties of the Environmental Horti-
culture Department.
Keona Muller, Alison DeBatt, Evenings were spent sampling
Jennifer Parrish and Erin Alvarez local cuisine, visiting area estab-
at the S.F Flower Market lishments, and resting for the
upcoming day. The trip was
sponsored in part by the Nation-
al Foliage Foundation, and the -
remaining expenses were cov-
ered with funds raised by the
club's plant sales. While the
group returned to Gainesville ex-
hausted, the club will not for- 1
get their experiences, which will
further help them prepare for
life after UF. Garden House at Filoli Gardens

Message from Our Chairman
Terril A. Nell
These are great times for Environ-
mental Horticulture -the economic im-
portance of the industry, the significance
of plants to human well-being, and the
value of turfgrass and landscaping to our
environment are being recognized. This
is a time for us to build on our strengths,
reaffirm our goals and priorities, main-
tain excellence, provide "society-ready"
students, and maintain and increase our
productivity. And, yet, these are challenging times for our pro-
gram just as they are for the individuals and small businesses in
the industry.
We are very fortunate to have a first-rate working relation-
ship with the horticultural and turfgrass industries and govern-
ment agencies, and continued support of our administration dur-
ing these weak economic times and reduced legislative funding.
We have a premier Environmental Horticulture program, and our
future depends upon continued development of these partner-
ships in order to maintain focus, enhance funding, and continue
along our path of excellence. With these partnerships, our chal-
lenges become greater and expectations increase significantly. In
the past, production practices focused on optimizing plant growth.
Today, we are conducting research, educating students, and pro-
viding horticultural information for a fragile ecosystem. These
efforts will emphasize the positive ENVIRONMENTAL aspects re-
sulting from the filtering of runoff from turfgrasses, cooling ef-
fects of landscape trees and plants, and efficient water and fer-
tilizer use.
Our success also depends on exploring new technology, and
will lead to advancement and economic growth of environmental
horticulture. As you will read in this newsletter, we are making
major advances in biotechnology, e.g. flowers that live longer
and leaves that remain green in times of stress. Will biotechnol-
ogy help us develop drought-tolerant turfgrasses and landscape
plants? Maybe! Advancing production technology is crucial to
safeguarding our environment, delivering quality products to con-
sumers, and maintaining efficiency and profitability. We are com-
mitted to educating our students, producers and consumers to be
diligent stewards of the environment, and at the same time, use
current technology to achieve superior horticultural information
and commodities. Our faculty, with the assistance of outstanding
staff and graduate students, will lead the nation in technological
advancements for Environmental Horticulture in the future.

In This Issue:
Education Corner .................... .................. 2
Student News .................... ........ ................... 2
Judy Wilson Honored on Earth Day ..................... 3
Alumni News ................. ........ ........................ 4
Dr. Albert Dudeck Retires ................................... 5
Focus on New Faculty ............... .................... 5
Redesigned EH Website Now Online .................... 5
Research Highlights ................... ..................... 6
2002 Floriculture Field Day .............. .............. 7
Dr. Bob's Gardening Tips .............. ................. 8
Upcom ing Events ............................................ 8


Alumni Career Night

It has been a busy Spring Semester,
with several special programs being of-
fered to our students. In January we
held our first annual Alumni Career Night.
The evening began with a chili dinner and
all the trimmings. Alumni in attendance
were Jennifer Rulka('99) Orange County
Extension Agent, Murdock Ray Gillis ('95)
Agristarts, Willie Pescara('01) Post Prop-
erties, Chris Neff('96) Timuquana Golf Et
Country Club, and Mike Roe('99) Total
Quality Liners, and Shane Barney of SE
Pro, Inc.
These alumni, who currently work in
different facets of the horticulture indus-
try, were invited to speak briefly about
the job they hold and any previous pro-
fessional work they have done. Students
then directed questions to the alumni
panel in a roundtable discussion. Topics

what employers look for in an
how to find a job
tips on how to be a desirable job
what to expect in an interview
job interview etiquette

Students were also encouraged to
network with professionals while in
school and make as many contacts as
possible. The evening was a tremendous
success and many of the students stayed
after to network with the Alumni. Please
contact us if you would be interested in
participating in this program.


Orchid Production and
Culture Short Course
Talk of orchids drew more than 100
people to Fifield Hall on March 23rd and
24th for the Orchid Production and Cul-
ture Short Course, jointly sponsored by
IFAS and the Boca Raton Orchid Society.
Students, faculty, industry, and orchid
enthusiasts spent two days attending
lectures by orchid specialists. Orchid
diversity, classification, and phylogeny
were some of the topics covered as well
as diseases, viruses, and insect pests of
orchids. The industry shared information
on growing techniques as well as mass
marketing, and the course wrapped up
with a segment on orchid judging. Of
course no orchid class would be complete
without Dr. Sheehan sharing information
on "Orchids to Know and Grow."
Students in attendance received one
credit hour after evaluating each speaker
and completing a short paper on a topic
discussed during the course. The topic
and course format seemed to appeal to a
diverse student audience, as 70% of the
students came from disciplines outside of
Environmental Horticulture. All partici-
pants were given beautiful orchids by
Costa Color Nursery and Kerry's Bromeli-
This course format allows students to
learn about a specific aspect of environ-
mental horticulture that may be of per-
sonal interest and use it as an elective
credit. The success of this course has
prompted us to look at other topics to
offer students.

Environmental Horticulture
Expands Again
The Environmental Horticulture De-
partment now offers a full degree pro-
gram at six locations throughout the
state. Apopka and Plant City are in addi-
tion to the Gainesville, Homestead, Ft.
Lauderdale and Milton locations. Environ-
mental Horticulture classes are also
offered at Fort Pierce.
The Apopka program is offered at the
Research and Education Center on Binion
Road. The Plant City program is housed
at Hillsborough Community College in
Plant City. Classes are offered by local

Kristin Bowden and Carol Keiper-Bennett
speak with Alumnus Willie Pescara of Post

faculty and through distance education
via the College of Agricultural and Life
Sciences. Many non-traditional students
(adults with full-time jobs and families)
are attracted to these programs, as are
professionals seeking additional informa-
tion to enhance their knowledge base.
Therefore, most courses are offered in
the evening or on Saturdays to accommo-
date students' work schedules.

Environmental Horticulture
Student Club
The team-spirited Environmental
Horticulture Club participated in a vari-
ety of environmentally-oriented commu-
nity activities during the Spring term of
2002. They assisted Gainesville's annual
"Great Air Potato Roundup" in early Feb-
ruary, conducted the Valentine's Day bulb
sale, organized a spring bedding plant
sale to raise funds for their annual trip,
and re-landscaped the interior foyer
planters of Fifield Hall.
The Environmental Horticulture Club
Spring Banquet on April 19th was unlike
any before, and included a silent auction
to benefit the Lisa Burton Memorial
Scholarship, door prizes, awards, danc-
ing, and casino games. Everyone in at-
tendance had a great time!

Turfgrass Club

The Turfgrass club has had a very
successful year. In February over 20 stu-
dents attended the Golf Course Superin-
tendents' Association of America Conven-
tion in Orlando. The students were ex-
posed to educational seminars, a trade
show and various social events. Many
students were able to network with in-
dustry and initiate contacts for potential
jobs. The club also volunteered in the
PGATour Players Championship event at
TPC Sawgrass on March 21st-24th
On April 6th the annual challenge
tournament with rival Lake City Commu-
nity College took place at Ironwood Golf
Course. The event was a huge success,
with 34 participants; our team took home
the 1st place trophy!

Occasionally we have important short
course, trade, or employment informa-
tion that we would like to pass along to
you. Please send us your e-mail address
so we can include you in our database.
Send information to Lisa Hall at

Student Honors

Erin Eckhardt was selected to join the
CALS Ambassador program and was also
elected to the Golden Key National Honor
Jennifer Parrish was selected to join the
2002-2003 CALS Ambassador program.
Jenny Hayes, graduating senior in Spring
2002, served a legislative internship in
Tallahassee spring term 2002. She was
recently selected for "Who's Who Among
Students in American Universities and
Colleges", a member of the University of
Florida Hall of Fame, and was nominated
most outstanding female undergraduate
leader by the UF Alumni Association.
Jennifer Colson is serving in a prestigious
one-year internship at Longwood Gardens
in Kennett Square, PA.
Mark Highland has accepted a Longwood
Graduate Fellowship at the University of

This year, our students were once again
awarded an extraordinary number of schol-
arhips. We are grateful to all individuals, cor-
porate donors, industry groups, and garden
clubs for their continued support of our pro-
Ball Internship $1,500
Bartlett Tree Fdn. 2,000
Batson Internship Sch. 6,500
Bloom N' Grow Garden Club 5,000
E.T. York, Jr. Award of Merit 500
ENH Graduate Student Assoc. 200
Florida Rural Rehab. Sch. 2,000
FNGA Big Bend 750
FNGA Central East Coast 250
FNGA- Royal Palm 500
FNGA -Tampa Bay 1,000
Gordon Res. Conf. Grant 665
IFAS Travel Grant 600
Int'.1 Pl. Prop. Society (IPPS) 500
Joiner Graduate Student Sch. 300
Korean Graduate Student Res. Award 300
Legislative Sch., College of Ag. 3,000
Mosmiller Internship 6,000
National Foliage Fdn. 1,500
Phelps Scholarship 15,000
Sn. Nurserymen's Assn.
Sydney B Meadows 2,500
Sweetwater Oaks Garden Club 1,000
University Alumni Fellowship 15,000
University Alumni Fellowship 15,000
Windermere Garden Club Sch. 1,500
Total awarded S83.065

Environmental Horticulture Student Club

Honors Judy Wilson

During Earth Day Festivities

The Environmental Horticulture student club honored Judith Cohen Wil-
son by planting eight Carpinus caroliniana trees for her at the Environ-
mental Horticulture tree unit at their spring picnic April 20th in obser-
vance of Earth Day. Judy has been supervising the scholarship program
since 1994 and over the years has helped ENH and Turf students amass over
$600,000 in scholarships. In addition, she has offered a warm helping
hand and a friendly ear to students, assisting them select and register for
courses, decide on internship locations, and process the many forms nec-
essary to be a UF student.
This award was especially meaningful and significant to Judy because
she worked for Senator Gaylord Nelson (D-
Wisc.) after graduating from the University
of Wisconsin and aided him in many ways,
including choosing students to attend the
various service academies West Point, Air
Force, Navy and Merchant Marines. Nelson
B l ". .. was an avid environmentalist, and in 1970
he founded Earth Day. Inspired by the teach-
S ins dealing with the Vietnam War, Earth Day
J was an instant success, drawing 20 million
participants in the first year. American Her-
itage Magazine called the first Earth Day
"one of the most remarkable happenings in
the history of democracy." Out of Earth Day
came the Clean AirAct, the Clean WaterAct,
Judy Wilson breaks ground for one the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Envi-
of her trees, ronmental Protection Act. So Judy has come
full circle, having worked with students pro-
grams in her first and last job, as she plans to
retire in 2005. A concerned environmentalist *
herself, she enjoys gardening and takes great
pride in her flowering potted plants.
Judy feels ENH and turf students wouldn't '
have majored in these areas if they were not
truly concerned with preserving the environ-
ment and our precious Planet Earth. It is up to
these students including past and future ones,
to carry forward the message of Earth Day in
their communities and careers because of their Jason Grabosky's future
concern with natural surroundings. arboriculturists in training

SCarl Loop (BS) wholesale nursery
owner and president of Florida Farm
Bureau Federation, was inducted into the
Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame. Loop
also received the Honorary American
Future Farmers of America (FFA) Degree
at the 74th National FFA Convention in
Louisville KY.

0 Dr. Bob Stamps (PhD) won first
prize in both the flower and ornamental
categories as well as Best in Show, in the
Pi Alpha Xi photography contest held in
conjunction with the American Society
for Hort. Science conference in Sacra-
mento, CA. Pi Alpha Xi is the honor soci-
ety for floriculture, landscape and orna-
mental horticulture.

Tom Wichman (BS) statewide director of
the Master Gardener Program was nomi-
nated for the Florida Association of Coun-
ty Agricultural Agents (FACAA/NACAA)
Achievement Award.

::; Wayne Porter (BS) and wife Donna
of an Antonio, FL proudly announce the
births of Tyler David and Ryan Joseph on
October 25, 2001. Porter is employed at
Busch Gardens as Assistant Project Man-

0 Ray Gillis (MS) has been a lab
manager for Agri-starts in Apopka, FL
since June 2001. Previously, Gillis taught
agriculture at Ponce de Leon High School
in Ponce de Leon, FL.

4 Michael Kidd (BS) completed his
Master's Program in Landscape Architec-
ture from the University of Georgia and is
currently employed at Jordan, Jones and
Goulding in Atlanta as a landscape archi-

Leslie Theus Marshall (BS) and Michael
Marshall (MS '97) announce with pleasure
the birth of Katherine Jane ("Katie")
January 27, 2002. Both are employed by
Marshall's Tree Farm.

David Ressler (BS), director of produc-
tion at Cherry Lake Tree Farm in Grove-
land, FL, was quoted extensively in May
2002 "Ornamental Outlook," regarding
their innovative irrigation practices.
Cherry Lake has successfully solved its
irrigation challenges with a customized
state-of-the-art system that is reducing

water usage and cutting costs with a fully
automated irrigation system. Ressler has
been employed by Cherry Lake since he
graduated from the ENH Dept

Jan Weinbrecht (MS) joined the Florida
Weed Science Society as a graduate stu-
dent in 1990. He was a speaker and/or
moderator 1991, 93-96 and 2000. He was
elected to the Board of Directors 1998
and served as publicity chair (99), local
arrangements chair (00) and as program
chair (01). He was President 2001-02.

4 John Jolley (BS) has been tuna
and sword fishing in the Atlantic Ocean
between Nova Scotia and the Caribbean
on a perfect storm boat called Southern
Lady. He supported himself by selling his
catch to restaurants and other food es-
tablishments. His next plan is to head for
Idaho where he expects to trap beaver.
You may remember Jolley's previous
exploits reported in the Departmental
ENH Newsletter Winter-Spring 1999. Stay
tuned for future news of the Johnny
Appleseed of the ENH Department.

Tucker Taylor with his hothouse tomatoes.

4 Heather Veasey Edwards (BS)
recently relocated to Demapolis, AL. with
her husband, David Edwards (BS '96 Wild-
life Ecology), a project manager for
Westervelt Wildlife Services. Her son,
Clayton Veasey Edwards, was born June
9, 2000.

Dr. Bart Schutzman (PhD), along with
other cycad biologists from around the
world, was an invited participant in the
Montgomery Botanical Center's Cycad
Classification Concepts Workshop, held
April 6-10 in Coral Gables, FL.

Michael Fricault (BS) is golf course super-
intendent of Hollow Creek Golf Club in
Middletown, MD.

Tucker Taylor (BS) resides in Portland,
OR and has managed a certified organic
farm for three years. He sells his pro-
duce to natural food stores, restaurants,
and farmers' markets. He grows hot-
house produce in twelve greenhouses
heirloom tomatoes, English cucumbers,
bell peppers, heirloom lettuce (a variety
that has been passed down from genera-
tion to generation) and several different
herbs. Taylor has the largest certified
organic greenhouse operation in Oregon.
He thanks Dr. Tom Yeager for helping him
discover the Willamette Valley.

Travis Teuton (BS) is a graduate student
in Agronomy.

1 Mark Highland(BS), previously a
landscape contractor in Portland, OR, has
been accepted as a graduate student at
the Longwood Gardens Graduate Program
at the University of Delaware.

Charlie Lane (BS) began PhD studies in
Recreation Parks Et Tourism, Fall 2001 at

40 Morgan Brown (BS) is golf course
superintendent at the Polo Club in Boca
Raton, FL.

4 John Steele (BS) is an assistant
golf course superintendent at this facility
with two 18-hole courses.

Steve Toomoth (BS) is employed by Envi-
ronmental Care in Orlando, FL

Adam Thomas (MS) is an assistant-in-
training at the Plainfield Country Club,
Plainfield, NJ.

Dr. Chun Zhang (PhD) is employed at the
UF Health Center as a post-doc.

Dana Holmberg (BS) has accepted a
position as manager of a new retail
nursery in front of their wholesale nurs-
ery, Ocala, FL.

0 Michael Harrell (MS) has been
accepted into the turfgrass management
graduate program at the University of KY,
Fall 2002.

Jason Jandrew (MS) has accepted a
plant breeder position at Goldsmith Seeds
in Gilroy, CA.

John Eric Luc (BS) will begin his MS in
Entomology/Nematology, UF, Fall 2002.

Christina Perez (BS) will begin a two
year program with the Peace Corps in
South America.

Eva Worden, one of our newest
faculty members, is an extension
specialist in urban landscape horticul-
ture and teaches at both the Home-
stead and Ft. Lauderdale programs.
She received her B.S. from the Universi-
ty of Florida, her M.S. in Horticulture
from the University of Maryland, and
earned a Ph.D. in Agricultural Ecology
from Yale University.
Eva is originally from Coral Gables,
Florida and received her undergraduate
degree from our Ft. Lauderdale
program. She enjoys growing plants,
learning about them and being able to
share that knowledge through teaching.
She states, "The excellent professors
and curriculum I enjoyed during my
undergraduate work at UF provided a
solid horticultural foundation that has
served me well over the years."
Her goal is to increase the scope and
visibility of the "environmental" part of
environmental horticulture. Her work at
the University of Florida highlights the
potential for growing and using plants

The new Statewide Environmental Horti-
culture Program website was launched in
December 2001. Consisting of the com-
bined materials from both the departmen-
tal and statewide websites, our new site
is streamlined for ease of use and includes
several new areas. Both old URL's, http://
hort.ifas.ufl.edu and http://hort.ufl.edu
access the new site. New areas and fea-
tures include Ed Gilman's pruning and
planting pages, the Landscape Plant Prop-
agation and Plant Nutrient Deficiency
databases, a new and updated statewide
faculty list with current contact informa-
tion, a search engine of departmental
publications, and a weekly updated state-
wide horticulture calendar. Our new site
is something no serious Florida horticul-
turist should go without! Come visit us!


a Worden, Assistant Professor
homestead / Ft. Lauderdale)

in order to improve human environ-
ments without degrading the natural
Some of the classes Eva teaches are
Ecology of Urban Landscapes, Plant
Identification and Use, and Tropical and
Subtropical Fruits.
The Ecology of Urban Landscapes
course addresses critical resources and
issues in urban ecology, such as water,
energy, air, soils, food, waste, open
space, pests, and biodiversity. Students
learn key principles and practices of
environmental landscape management,
explore success stories and identify
possibilities for creating environmental
landscapes. In teaching her courses,
Eva challenges students in class
assignments to creatively draw upon
their personal interests, their histories,
and their goals. With this approach to
teaching, she seeks not only to convey
knowledge, but also to help students
learn how to effectively integrate and
transform that knowledge for relevant
purpose in their lives.

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Homepage of the redesigned
statewide horticulture program website

Dr. Albert E. Dudeck

Retires From EH
[+llL ,;,; IL,. .'

Dr. Al Dudeck has retired after 32
years of service to IFAS and the
University of Florida. During his
career, he has made many outstand-
ing contributions to IFAS, the Envi-
ronmental Horticulture Department,
its students, and the University of
Florida. He is considered to be one
of the turfgrass research leaders in
the state, nation and internationally.
Dr. Dudeck's evaluation and
development of turfgrasses for golf
courses and home lawns has been
very important to the future of the
turfgrass industry in Florida. He is
responsible for development of two
St. Augustinegrass cultivars that have
provided the turf industry with
southern chinch bug and sod virus-
resistant grasses. These resistant
cultivars have saved the turf industry
millions of dollars. He also devel-
oped one of the first ultradwarf
bermudagrasses, Floradwarf, for golf
putting greens. Floradwarf has been
planted on a number of golf courses
in both Florida and Texas. In addi-
tion, Dr. Dudeck has developed
invaluable information on golf course
overseeding during the cool winter
Dr. Dudeck has been appointed as
an Emeritus faculty and will continue
a professional relationship with the
department, while spending much of
his time with his wife, Dolores, and
his growing assemblage of grandchil-
dren. .. ,Ai. ,-I.

Reei* e EN We Sit No S S

Ise F--cr


Answering Basic
+Horticulture Questions
To some, the research of Dr. Charles L.
Guy and his graduate students may not
seem to have very much commonality with
many of his "co-Horts." While most of us
garden-variety horticulturists are out in the
greenhouses and trial plots growing and
performing experiments with floriculture
crops, annuals, perennials, and woody
ornamentals, Dr. Guy and his co-workers
are attempting, mostly in the laboratory,
to answer basic biological questions that

Arabidopsis thaliana plants genetically
engineered in Charlie Guy's lab showing
tolerance to heat shock. Plant in upper left
corner is untransformed.
have gone without satisfactory
answers through the history of horticulture.
Their area of interest is the molecular basis
for heat and cold stress tolerance in plants.
This work can someday have potentially
immense value to civilization, as we learn
how to impart greater tolerance to heat
waves and freezing weather. This work is
valuable not just in Florida, but in places
like Russia, where farmers are routinely
attempting to grow crops in colder areas
than would favor optimal yields. Adding
more cold tolerance to a crop like wheat
could tremendously aid economic self-
sufficiency in colder regions. Eventually,
understanding of the genetic principles will
lead to cold hardy and heat tolerant
ornamental plant varieties as well.

Dave Clark with one of his genetically
engineered petunias.

Bridging the Gap between
Basic and Applied Science
Dr. David G. Clark, Associate Professor,
has turned his high-tech knowledge of plant
physiology and genetics to the molecular
biology of floricultural crops, with some
extraordinary results. While genetic
engineering of food crops has been the
subject of intense controversy in the U.S.
and elsewhere, particularly in Europe, the
manipulation of floricultural crops has far
less emotional value. In fact, it could
possibly help consumers to understand
biotechnology, since the highly-charged
emotions of "messing around with our food"
have been effectively removed when one
deals with ornamentals. Clark and other
molecular biologists explain that
biotechnology is in principle the same as
plant hybridizing to select desirable traits.
The molecular biological way, however, can
be potentially much faster and more
Clark explains that this technique of
finding desirable traits and "splicing" them
into plant DNA begins with a plant model,
a species that has been thoroughly studied,
its genetic sequences analyzed "ad
nauseum." In his case, the model species
is ordinary petunia (Petunia hybrida). What
he has done with those petunia plants,
though, is anything but ordinary. Thus far,
genetic manipulations have produced a
"stay-green" plant with delayed leaf
senescence that also resists Cercospora leaf
spot and is much more amenable to drought
stress; a plant which produces an
abundance of the enzyme GA-oxidase,
which oxidizes gibberellic acid, keeping
plants very compact; and a petunia
insensitive to ethylene that continues to
hold its blossoms long after they have been
pollinated. Eventually, these technological
advances will lead to superior garden plants
of all shapes and colors and sizes, but won't
produce a killer tomato, as some might like
us to believe! Disease and pest resistant
ornamental plants will be environmentally
friendly, as we will need to pour much less
fertilizer and pesticide on them to make
them thrive and, in turn, will turn us into
happy consumers.

Application of
Recycling in Horticulture
From 1990-93, Drs. Dennis McConnell
and Aziz Shiralipour (UF's Center for Natural
Resources), funded by the State of Florida,
and collaborating with Dr. Wayne Smith
studied yard trimmings as a useful, cost-
effective soil amendment. Recently, Dr.
McConnell has recycled his interest in
renewable resources. Collaborating as
Project Manager with Research Manager Dr.
Gladis Zinati and Extension faculty Erik
Spalvins in Sumter County, they are
revisiting the use of organic waste. This
time, they are members of "FORCE"
(Florida Organics Recycling Center for
Excellence), another legislature-funded
program, co-directed by Wayne Smith (now
Director of UF's School of Forest Resources
Et Conservation) and Gary Breeden (Director
of Sumter County Public Works).
There couldn't be a more appropriate
time to apply our best talents in this
direction. Floridians have renewed
enthusiasm to protect their environment,
reduce the amount of waste materials
disposed of in landfills, save energy by using
natural sources of plant nutrition, and
conserve of our dwindling and precious
water resources. Organic compost
amendments and mulches accomplish these
ends by making carbon available to
beneficial microorganisms, releasing
nutrients as decomposition byproducts, and
reducing evapotranspiration. In addition,
the compost amendments improve
properties of potting media and soils.
Dr. Zinati is the newest member of the
team on the Gainesville campus, joining us
last September. She earned her Ph.D.
degree in soil fertility from Michigan State
University in 1997, and joined UF's Tropical
Research and Education Center (TREC) in
Homestead as a research associate in 1998.
She strives for research results with
effective application to crop and soil
management, recycling, and reducing
wastes in Florida, and has been presenting
her research findings at regional, national
and international meetings.

Dr. Gladis Zinati (right) at the International
Symposium for Composting and Compost
Utilization in Columbus, Ohio, May, 2002.

Floriculture Field Day was held May 7th through 9th, and was a major success
story. Two days of speakers and tours emphasized new varieties of annuals and
perennials for the southeast, and new ways to use these plants in the landscape; a
third day at the Gulf Coast Research Et Education Center's field trials in Bradenton
extended the event. This year marks the coming together of San Felasco Nurseries'
Perennial Field Day and the University of Florida's Floriculture Research Team's Trials.
The merger of these two popular educational events featured seminars by renowned
speakers, tours, roundtable discussions, a plant and seed auction, and dinner at
Kanapaha Botanical Gardens. Over 240 registered attendees came to the field day,
visited local nurseries, participated in plant identification contests, and enjoyed lunch
in the new Environmental Horticulture Department trial gardens.
Educational sessions included industry panel discussions on perennial production,
issues surrounding plant patenting, ins and outs of plant collection and new government
plant importation regulations, and a two and a half hour presentation of new crops 'Sparkler' was one of several Verbena
scheduled for release in 2002 and 2003 by five international firms. On the second day cultivars to be seen in the trial plots.
of sessions, focus talks explored several areas in depth. Specific crops, such as Coleus,
Salvias, Gingers, Aroids, and Plectranthus were presented by regional and national
experts. Other topics included specialty cut flowers for Florida growers, promising
native plants, butterfly gardening, and drought tolerant plants for Florida. Overall
there were 38 speakers, and over 350 different species of plants were showcased.
Attendees were extremely happy to have been exposed to what is going on in the
industry, new plants with promise for Florida, the world of plant collection and
patenting, and to see real-life examples of current UF research and trials all in one
The event was organized by the UF floriculture group, many other member of our
statewide program, and the staff of San Felasco Nursery. The area around the trial
gardens was transformed into a giant garden display area with hanging baskets, mixed
containers, and the 200 plant varieties in the new trial gardens. Planning for the AY _L
event began in July 2001. The many volunteers present were evidence of this sizeable
team effort.
In the future, this field day will also serve as a statewide in-service training for
county extension agents, and a twofold planned expansion of the statewide trialing
program in Gainesville and elsewhere around the state. The consumer education portion
of the field day will be expanded to offer Florida consumers a detailed look at new
plants in the market and some of the new national marketing programs.

A South African native, Butbine caulescens,
Yellow bulbine (Liliaceae)

Species of Plectranthus were popular with the

The trial beds featured 200 plant varieties.

Dr. Robert Black

Growing Flowerins
Annuals in Containers

Now, during the in-between season
for planting colorful summer and fall
annuals, is an excellent time to select
plants and seed and to locate easy-to-
care-for pots and containers. Annuals
are easy to care for and are fast to
perform. They adapt readily to
containers provided they do not
outgrow the size of their containers.
Dwarf varieties of summer annuals
may be planted several to a pot,
spacing each plant approximately six
inches apart. One plant should be
enough for a six or eight inch pot. Be
sure the annual you choose is a summer
flowering type and one that will endure
the heat and long days of summer and
fall. Dwarf and compact varieties of
marigold, zinnia, dahlia, begonia and
cosmos adopt readily to pot culture.
Other "children of the sun" which will
reward summer days with vivid and
continual color in pots may include
vinca or periwinkle, impatiens,
portulaca, verbena, gaillardia or
blanket flowers, and ornamental
There are non-flowering plants,
too, for containers, which have a wide

~L; ;A

range of colorful foliage. The gay
summer and fall colors of Coleus,
Alternanthera and Acalypha or
copperleaf are quite adaptable in
planter boxes or other containers, and
perform well until the arrival of winter.
Lush summer greens for pots may
include ferns, fatsia, banana, English
ivy, elephant ear and aucuba. Unlike
most of the flowering annuals and
colorful foliage plants, the greens
demand a shaded location in the
Even though container plants are
easy to care for, they do have their
demands for success. The major
requirement is adequate watering. The
hot days of summer quickly dry out
containers; therefore, they will need
watering at least three times a week,
if not more often. Use a slow stream
of water so as not to disturb the soil or
shallow root area. Potting soil should
be loose and well drained to insure
good water penetration and to prevent
soil compaction. Plant foods in the
potted soils are quickly washed from
the soils with continued watering thus
need replacement with a biweekly
feeding of a complete liquid
houseplant fertilizer.
The removal of faded blooms of
flowering container plants is
important, as it is actually a slight
pruning process which encourages
more branching and more blooms.
Terminal shoots of young plants may
be pinched back to form a more bushy
and well-branched plant in the

container even before it starts
flowering and during early stages of
The wide selection of colorful
summer and fall plants for pots, and
the portable aspect of pot gardening
which allows for a change or
rearrangement in placement or pot
groupings, will guarantee fun and
attractiveness in home landscaping.
Pot gardening also uses a limited
amount of room and a small investment
for such big rewards. The gardener who
will plan ahead may add rich and vivid
color with potted summer and fall
annuals to grace the patio, poolside,
wall or doorstep.

UF Campus, Gainesville, FL
July 29th 31st
URL: http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/tc_workshop.pdf
(contact: MKane@mail.ifas.ufl.edu)

Atlanta, GA
August 2nd 4th
URL: http://www.sna.org/tradeshow/

Orlando, FL
September 19th 21st
URL: http://www.fnga.org/base.htm?page=fnats

Tagetes patula, the French Marigold

Catharanthus, the Annual Periwinkle

The Environmental Horticulture News is published twice yearly. Contributors: Lisa
Hall, Judy Wilson, Bart Schutzman, and Mary Ann Andrews. Editing, layout and design
by Bart Schutzman and Mary Ann Andrews. Contact us at (352) 392-1831, fax (352)
392-3870, or visit our website at http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu.

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