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March 19, 2014
What started in 1957 as a produce farm has now become an established greenhouse operation with multiple locations — Dan Schantz Farm & Greenhouses, based in Zionsville, Pa. While the product offering has changed quite a bit, Dan Schantz’s vision...
March 11, 2014
Many popular spring garden plants, such as calibrachoa and petunia, perform best at a low media pH, around 5.4 to 5.8. When the pH becomes too high, above 6.2 for these crops, iron in the root zone becomes less available to these plants. The most...
March 11, 2014
For herb enthusiasts and food aficionados, Ocimum basilicum (sweet basil) is a must-have variety in the garden. Originating in Southeast Asia and native to India, herb basil has been used for regional cuisines and medicinally for more than 5,000...
March 11, 2014
In recent years, the lines between plants marketed as herbaceous perennials and ornamental shrubs have become somewhat blurred. Many growers produce and market both perennials and shrubs in their commercial offerings. Hypericum ‘Hypearls Compact...
March 11, 2014
Greenhouse growers know the importance of balancing the many different parameters involved in a successful growing operation. With a greenhouse setup, lighting is one of the most important factors for growers to control so their hard work and...
March 11, 2014
Iron is needed in plants for several functions. Iron is used in chlorophyll production, it acts as an oxygen carrier, and it is involved in chemical reactions for cell division and growth. Because iron is involved in chlorophyll production one...
March 11, 2014
Vinca is one of the most recognized annuals for use in high light and dry landscapes, and varieties with improved resistance to Phytophthora Aerial Blight and novel flower colors have further enhanced consumer appeal. Unfortunately, vinca can still...
March 11, 2014
Along with the evaluation of the new cultivars at the trial sites, several experiments are conducted to study different production issues.  Below are reports on four of these trials. These trials are supported by the poinsettia breeder and...
March 11, 2014
ARC: Margery, how much do you hate guessing what is wrong with a plant? I still remember having growers call me when I worked at the University of Florida research center in Apopka in the early 1980s. They would describe the “disease” as having...
March 11, 2014
The winter of 2013-14 has been one for the record books. It doesn’t matter where you are located, Mother Nature has presented a cornucopia of challenges for growers. Record snowfalls, bone-chilling temperatures and unprecedented ice storms hit a...
February 12, 2014
Bedding plants that stop developing at moderately low temperatures can be labeled as cold-intermediate plants. This categorization of plants is based on estimates of crops’ base temperatures derived from research data primarily generated at Michigan...
February 12, 2014
Littletunia, a miniature-flower petunia hybrid from Danziger “Dan” Flower Farm, is sensational for early spring sales and beyond. The series is a great alternative to calibrachoa, which can be sensitive to higher pH. Expect a mounded habit combined...
February 12, 2014
Most growers, landscapers and homeowners are very familiar with begonias that are commonly used as bedding plants. Interestingly, there are approximately 900 species of begonia found throughout the world; of these, two species are perennials in...
February 12, 2014
Despite advances in plant genetics, fungicides (including biologicals), mechanization and our understanding of how diseases occur, sanitation remains critical in horticulture today. Even old diseases like crown gall, which have been minor for years...
February 12, 2014
What’s new? As the season changes and the nursery is full with pansies and perennials, landscapers and designers are coming to shop and at least once a day someone asks “What’s new?” There are usually new varieties of plants to offer, but there are...
February 12, 2014
In the past, organic fertilizer options consisted of single sources of plant and animal by-products like bone and blood meals, composted manures and alfalfa meal (as examples) that varied in quality, nutrient analysis and nutrient release from batch...
February 12, 2014
This was the 21st year for the North American Poinsettia Trials, and results again illustrated the value of multiple trial sites. The trials are conducted at Homewood Nursery and Garden Center in Raleigh, North Carolina State University (NCSU),...
February 12, 2014
ARC:  I’ve been thinking about rates and intervals and how important they can be. This always brings to mind some adage like “Only the dose makes the poison,” which is often said with respect to chemical safety to humans. In this case, though,...
February 12, 2014
There are a multitude of reasons why people get into this business. But if I had to guess, one of the main reasons is they really like to grow things. Bedding plants, perennials, tropicals, edibles, woody ornamentals ... you name it, growers take a...
January 16, 2014
Everyone wants to grow and be successful in their personal lives and careers. Most people believe this growth is going to come from a business with great products, great service and a great team. In the 21st century, leadership skills are more...