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Proceedings of the International Plant Propagator's Society

Vol. 42

Is Green Good Enough?

Carl E. Whitcomb

pp: 337-339

The accepted standard for evaluating plants has been color. If a plant had "good green color," it was assumed to be healthy and as good as one could expect. Basic nursery practices reflect this assumption. Unless some yellowing or lightening of the green color occurred, little, if any attention was given to refinements in nutrition. As one nurseryman said, "My goal is to keep the plants green".

Research over the years has convinced me we can do much more to enhance plant health. Following is a compilation of some of these experiments and my comments on what they mean for the future.

In 1975 I compared several rates of each of several micronutrient fertilizers with supplements of specific elements. Midway through the growing season a heavy grasshopper population developed I considered spraying for the grasshoppers; however, we had no appropriate insecticide on hand, and by the time the pesticide arrived, I noticed an interesting trend. The grasshoppers were not feeding on the Burford

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