Greenhouse Product News

April 2021

The business magazine for commercial growers

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28 APRIL 2021 GPNMAG.COM A s growers move each year to streamline their production systems, more are propagating their own cuttings. This can help reduce their costs and ensure timely availability of cuttings. There are two significant steps to successfully produce the cuttings. The first step is successful establishment of roots, and the second step is growth of the young plant through transplanting and plant establishment. Different species and cultivars present different challenges. Some cultivars or species are more difficult to initiate rooting, and others may initiate rooting more easily but may be slow to continue growth. The new Pronto Rapid System addresses both areas. The application of rooting hormones to plant cuttings has been part of propagation practices for years. However, the issue of having to manually dip each cutting into rooting hormone increases sticking time and costs (especially labor) associated with sticking. A new product (Advocate by Fine Americas) provides growers the ability to spray rooting hormone over the cuttings after sticking. This streamlines the sticking process in the production of annuals and perennials. Advocate is a liquid formulation of IBA (indole-3-butyric acid) that mixes readily in water and can be sprayed/sprenched over the cuttings within 48 hours of sticking. IBA formulations in the past were either dry talc-based forms or gels that had to be applied by dipping the cuttings into the product. Some dry/powder IBA products can be diluted in water for spraying, but this product is a liquid that mixes well in water and does not create issues with spraying/sprenching over the cuttings. While Advocate can be used in a system using immersion, basal dip or basal emersion of cuttings, it is the ability to spray/sprench this product over the cuttings that provides an advantage. To address the second potential hurdle of transplant production, another new product (Crest by Fine Americas) combines three PGRs to help the newly rooted plants grow to the desired size and stage. It does not create uncontrolled growth but acts to push the plant along in a controlled pace. Crest consists of three PGRs (IBA, Kinetin, GA) in ratios that promote structured plant growth. It can be applied as part of a watering program or as foliar sprays/sprenches. PLANT HEALTH BY JIM SCRUGGS Figure 2. Photo taken 16 weeks after third Crest application (20 weeks after transplanting from liners). Crest treated plants in left tray. Figure 1. Photo taken one week after third Crest application (five weeks after transplanting from liners). Crest treated plants in left tray. IMPROVE Rooting, Plant Establishment and Growth of Cuttings Two new products treat cuttings of hard-to-root and slow-growing plants.

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