Greenhouse

What’s Missing? Three Basic Tools for Diagnosing Nutrient Deficiencies

Diagnose nutrient deficiencies correctly to treat the real problem The best approach to treating nutrient imbalances is a preemptive one, because symptoms of nutrient imbalances frequently show up long after irreversible cosmetic damage has occurred. Establishing a well-balanced nutrition program from the start gives plants the best chance for healthy growth and disease/pest resistance. When problems do arise, accurate diagnosis is often difficult because symptoms of nutrient imbalances mimic those of disease, and vice versa. Damage from other environmental stressors, such as insects, pesticides and pollution often adds to the confusion. Obtaining an accurate diagnosis is a three-fold process...

The Importance of Monitoring: Best Practices for Integrated Pest Management

Monitor overall plant health with a strong IPM program The term Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is often misleading because a good IPM program looks at a bigger picture than just pests-overall plant health. Without a doubt, the best management practice for any IPM program is prevention, which is comparable to putting out sparks before they become raging fires. A well-run IPM program includes regular monitoring for pests, diseases, nutrient deficiencies, irrigation problems, sanitation, and much, much more. Early intervention is instituted as soon as signs of damage are detected, rather than later when they are irreversible. In the case...

Managing Nutrition in Floriculture Crops

Establish a good fertilizer program for high-quality spring crops The only constant during the springtime is change, particularly in the greenhouse industry. For growers, spring can feel like dealing with the indecisive Goldilocks in the classic Three Bears fairytale. The weather is either too hot or too cold. Crops are coming in or going out. Plants are either heavy feeders or light feeders. Establishing a good fertilizer program at this time can be a daunting prospect, especially with the assortment of bedding plants offered today. John F. Kennedy once said, “The time to repair the roof is when the...

Controlled-Release Fertilizers (CRFs) for the Greenhouse

Controlled-release fertilizers (CRFs) can provide growers with cost-effective, sustainable options for nutrient delivery in the greenhouse. Water soluble fertilizers (WSF) have long been growers’ primary choice for nutrient delivery in commercial greenhouses, but that may change in the future. A resurgence of interest in controlled-release fertilizers (CRF) is occurring as greenhouse growers hunt for sustainable, cost-effective solutions for fertility management. Recent research conducted at Purdue, Cornell, and the University of New Hampshire on bedding and potted plants confirms that CRFs have the potential to play a much larger role in large-scale greenhouse production in the future. “Generally speaking, the...
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