Sphagnum peat moss is an important component of greenhouse and nursery plant potting media, but mining of the material is unsustainable due to its negative environmental impacts. A new research project (funded by USDA Northeast SARE) is evaluating hemp hurd fiber as an alternative substrate for peat moss, which is a non-renewable resource. Dr. Jessica Lubell-Brand is leading the project.Â The research project is looking at hemp hurd fiber in growing media for container production of horticultural crops. Knowledge will be acquired about what crop groups may be grown using hurd, the amounts of hurd that may be combined with traditional media components, and the impact hurd substitution has on the availability of nutrients. If it can be shown that hurd may be successfully substituted for peat during the production of horticultural crops, then growers will seek to use this byproduct of the hemp industries.
Tis the season! Did you know that Connecticut greenhouses grow many of the poinsettias you find in stores around New England. They are still shipping fresh plants. Learn more about the industry:
Photos: Leanne Pundt for UConn Extension
New England greenhouse growers rely on the New England Greenhouse Floriculture Guide for its unbiased, detailed information. It includes insect and mite management, disease prevention and management, weed control, and plant growth regulation. The Guide is updated every two years.
Dr. Rosa Raudales and Leanne Pundt were co-editors for the 2021-2022 version. Raudales led the effort to develop an online format for the Guide. She also provided overall editing and updated the section on plant growth regulators. Pundt edited the sections on IPM and insect biology, weeds, algae and liverworts and co-edited the section on disease management with Dr. Cheryl Smith, emeritus from the University of New Hampshire.
The New England Floriculture, Inc., sponsor of the Northeast Greenhouse Conference, in collaboration with University Cooperative Extensions from New England States is proud to introduce the free online version of the New England Greenhouse Floriculture Guide: A Management Guide for Insects, Diseases, Weeds, and Growth Regulators.
Article by Leanne Pundt
UConn Extension Offers Vegetable Seedling & Transplant Production in Greenhouses Webinar Series for Greenhouse Growers
A webinar series for growers producing vegetables and herbs as seedlings or transplants in heated greenhouses. Topics include transplant uniformity, root-zone management, organic fertilizers, disease & pest control.
One pesticide recertification credit has been approved for three of five one-hour webinar for New England states.
More information here. (including program description and online registration).
The Northeast Greenhouse Conference and Expo has announced that they will offer a webinar series this fall, beginning Nov. 4 sponsored by New England Floriculture Inc., in order to deliver content relevant to greenhouse pests, diseases, biocontrols, PGRs, and sanitation. Although having to postpone the Northeast Greenhouse Conference and Expo to 2021 due to the Coronavirus pandemic is regrettable, the hope is that these webinars will provide important education (and pesticide recertification credit) for the greenhouse community in 2020. Pesticide recertification credits will be offered for the New England States and New York.
- Pests of Chrysanthemum, and an Insect Management Update
Biological Control: How to be successful
Growing Garden Mums Without Disease Losses
Learn the Newest Strategies to Keep Root Rots from Hurting Your Bottom Line
Young Plants and Plant Growth Regulators: Saving time and Improving Quality
Cleaning Surfaces in the Greenhouse
Visit https://www.negreenhouse.org/virtual-series-schedule.html for the dates/descriptions and registration information.
High technology greenhouses across Connecticut provide cover for many types of plants. Bedding plants, edibles (vegetable and herb transplants, greenhouse vegetables grown for production), ornamental herbaceous perennials, hemp and poinsettias all grow in greenhouses.
UConn Extension supports the Connecticut greenhouse industry with information and educational programming on sustainable production methods. In Connecticut, the greenhouse industry is a significant part of agriculture. Greenhouse and nursery products are Connecticut’s leading source of agricultural income.
Approximately 300 commercial greenhouse businesses have eight million square feet of production space under cover. In addition, many Connecticut farmers have added greenhouse crops to their businesses to increase income.
UConn Extension offered 111 training sessions to Connecticut wholesale and retail greenhouses with 1,566,088 square feet of intensive greenhouse production and 1,021,000 square feet of outdoor container production in 2019. Diagnostic trouble shooting, grower visits, phone calls, emails and text messages helped growers not participating in the intensive program offered by our UConn Integrated Pest Management (IPM) educators.
One grower stated, “I would like thank you for all the guidance and information that you provided the interns and me this year. I always receive a new piece of information that helps me keep the crops on track for that excellent product.”
Greenhouse production continues to be one of the largest segments of Connecticut agriculture, and the success of the industry helps build the infrastructure that other operations depend on.
Article by Leanne Pundt
Is it time to get outside and work on your garden? Or are you looking for the perfect gift for mom this weekend? There are garden centers with curbside pickup and online ordering available throughout the state.
These nursery sachets consist of bran and food storage mites (that feed upon the bran) that are a food source for the small predatory mite Neoseilus (Amblyseius) cucumeris commonly referred to as “cucumeris”. Cucumeris is a small, tan predatory mite (less than 1 mm. long) that attacks thrips larvae found on the leaves and in the flowers. They pierce the thrips and suck them dry, killing them. These predatory mites do not travel far and cannot fly, so growers place a mini-sachet in each hanging basket.
The moral of the story – leave the envelope in your hanging basket, and enjoy the flowers!
Article by Leanne Pundt
The University of Connecticut Greenhouse Research & Extension team are conducting a study in root rot of hydroponically-grown leafy greens. They would like to collect plant samples with root rot from commercial operations in the U.S. Your participation will help better understand how microbes interact in roots and potentially identify beneficial microbes that reduce the risk of plant pathogens in hydroponics.
Participants would benefit from this study by receiving a free diagnosis of what is causing root rot in the sample and early access to the information generated from this project. If you are interested in participating, follow this link: http://s.uconn.edu/surveyrootrot
This project is sponsored by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Hatch Multistate project accession number 1020637.
Get the latest information on bedding plant crop diseases, case studies on greenhouse production issues and more from University experts and network with professionals and fellow growers. This educational program will feature the following topics of interest to those who produce spring crops in the greenhouse:
· Case Studies on Greenhouse Production Issues
Rosa Raudales, Greenhouse Extension Specialist, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
· The Good, The Bad, The Ugly of Glyphosate, Candace Bartholomew, UConn Extension
· Tales from the Field, Leanne Pundt, UConn Extension, (Feb 6th only)
· Update on Bedding Plant Diseases, Abby Beissinger, UConn
· Recap 2019, Bedding Plant Diseases to Prepare for 2020, Dr. Yonghao Li, CAES (Feb 11th only)
· What’s New with Diamide Insecticides from OHP, Carlos Bogran, OHP (Feb 11th only)
For your convenience, this program will be offered in two separate locations.
· February 6th, this program will be offered from 9:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Tolland County Extension Office at 24 Hyde Avenue, Vernon, CT.
· February 11th, this program will be offered from 9:30 to 2:30 at the Litchfield County Extension Center at 843 University Drive, Torrington, CT.
Four Pesticide recertification credits available!
For more information, contact Leanne Pundt, at 860.626.6855 or email: email@example.com
The University of Connecticut is an equal opportunity program provider and employer.
It is Christmas in July for the greenhouse producers who grow poinsettias. In order to have plants that are blooming for December sales, greenhouses start the process early. Poinsettias require months in the greenhouse before they are ready to be purchased and taken home.
Leanne Pundt, one of our Extension educators was scouting the plants for whitefly immatures at one the Connecticut growers last week and took these photos.