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Posted: Aug/27/2007 10:24 AM PST
Hello! I am a teacher and I run a small greenhouse at my school. We have had a few problems with flowers that I would like to figure out so we can try them again next year.
First, My kids and I decided to make baskets using plain red geraniums and other baskets using vining petunias. Both types of flowers we bought through a greenhouse as plugs and we let them grow bigger throughout the spring. as June came along, we sold them and I noticed (and people commented) that the geranium leaves turned bright red and the plants were not full, but just a stem with very small leaves and maybe a small flower or two. I noticed that the dirt in the pot was extremely clogged with roots. Is there a difference between what we did and what the greenhouses/stores do with their pots?
The petunias were the same way... they were very sickly and they would put out a few flowers and the dirt was clogged with roots. Is there another type of flower or variety of geranium that does not put out as much roots?
Thanks for the help!
Posted: Aug/27/2007 1:12 PM PST
We used a pot mix that had perlite, vermic, chips, and etc. and it seems like the roots have taken over... I thought that they maybe are water starved due to the abundance of roots, but I should not have to water every day. The plants from stores are able to go a few days wthout water!
Location: Eastern Wa
Posted: Sep/09/2007 9:03 PM PST
I graduated last year with a AA is Greenhouse/Nursery Management. There we used 20-10-20 at every watering on baskets and on potted annuals/perennials. Depending on the annual (say tomatoes and peppers) we alternated with a 10-15-10 Cal-Mag.
BTW in our greenhouses we had to water DAILY. You don't realize how much transpiration is going on under greenhouse roofs....the greenhouse temperatures and time of year make a difference too.
BTW I bought some Zonal Geraniums from the FFA kids at their school greenhouse this year. Their leaves were also turning red, but as soon as I planted them out that went away in short order. I believe theirs too had been under fed.
I have here before me all the student's final spring crop reports. Here is what was done for the Petunia and Geranium:
First they were sown into 288 plug trays during week 10 (I'm talking growers weeks so week 10 would have been between the 6th and 10th of March, 2006)
Week 15...transplanted to 1204's (pony packs...4 celled)
By Week 18...first week of May.
20-10-20 every watering
Spacing was pot to pot/flat to flat
She made a comment to the fact that she started a little late and would suggest starting them earlier so they would have been flowering by week 18.
seed from Parks Seed
Week 52: seed sown into 288 trays (5 total trays)
(Dec. 30th, 2005)
Week 5 (Jan. 30th) transplanted to 4" flimsies; applied 250 ppm Cycocel (growth regulator).
Week 15: Flower clusters visable
Week 16: Crops are in bloom
Week 18: Crops finished and ready for sale
Germination champber 68F
First 16 weeks an ADT (average daily temp) of 70F; last 5 weeks 65.5F
20-10-20 at 200 ppm...approximately 2x weekly; Crop is susceptible to root rot...careful watering required especially during cloudy days
After tranplanting to 4" flimsies pots were spaced pot to pot first 12 weeks. Final spacing on 6" centers.