Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study shines light on ways to cut costs for greenhouse growers

24.01.2012
Greenhouse bedding plant growers can save themselves time, money or possibly both by giving cuttings in propagation more light, according to a Purdue University study.

Flower growers use cuttings from Central America and Africa to start spring bedding plants in greenhouses during winter and early spring. Those cloudy days and cool temperatures make propagation time- and energy-intensive.

Roberto Lopez, an assistant professor of horticulture, and horticulture graduate students Chris Currey and Veronica Hutchinson study ways to minimize inputs and production costs in the floriculture industry while improving product quality. Based on what they were hearing from growers, they realized that light wasn't getting the attention it needed from the industry.

"In their minds, temperature has always been the most important thing. They didn't think about light," Lopez said. "We knew that light was significant, but we realize we didn't know what level to recommend."

Currey said growers were concerned that using too much light would stress the cuttings and disrupt root development.

"The dogma has been to keep light low, but that actually made the cuttings take longer to root," said Currey, whose findings were published in the January issue of the journal HortScience.
Currey, Hutchinson and Lopez propagated nine popular spring bedding plants under differing amounts of light for two weeks. They took a quality index used in forestry and modified it for bedding plants to assess the quality of the plants based on the light levels. They measured stem length, stem caliper, shoot dry mass and root dry mass.

Overall, plants rooted faster with more light and the plants were higher quality. Both factors could increase profits for greenhouse growers, Lopez said.

"With reduced production time, you can save on production costs or increase your crop production by starting another second crop that wouldn't have been possible with reduced light," Currey said. "That's increased profits through greenhouse space savings or energy savings, as well as through a higher quality product."

A copy of the paper, with more specific light requirements, can be viewed at https://sharepoint.agriculture.purdue.edu/agriculture/flowers/publications.aspx

Next, Lopez and Currey plan to study the morphological and physiological changes associated with light and cutting propagation, as well as how LED lights can be used to add supplemental daily light for cuttings.

The Fred C. Glockner Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Research Initiative and the Indiana Flower Growers Association funded this research.

Writer: Brian Wallheimer, 765-496-2050, bwallhei@purdue.edu
Sources: Roberto Lopez, 765-496-3425, rglopez@purdue.edu
Chris Currey, 765-496-3425, ccurrey@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson, robins89@purdue.edu
Agriculture News Page

Brian Wallheimer | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.purdue.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht How much drought can a forest take?
20.01.2017 | University of California - Davis

nachricht Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product
02.12.2016 | Purdue University

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>