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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 937: XXVIII International Horticultural Congress on Science and Horticulture for People (IHC2010): International Symposium on Advances in Ornamentals, Landscape and Urban Horticulture

HOSTA: A PLANT FOR FLOWER ARRANGEMENT

Authors:   A.M. Cabrera, A.M. de León, M. Fernández, T. Ramos, I. Rodríguez
Keywords:   new crop, evaluation of ornamentals, hydroponics, latency, foliar analysis
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2012.937.67
Abstract:
The plantain lily Hosta sieboldiana (Liliaceae-Agavaceae) is an ornamental plant with great potential that has only recently become available in the Canary Islands. It has not previously been tested in our conditions, therefore our aim was to evaluate its quality and productive potential for use in flower arrangements. The experiment was conducted at the Canaryflor horticultural cooperative in Tejina with five cultivars: ‘Northern Halo’, ‘Wide Brim’, ‘Frances Williams’, ‘Elegans’ and ‘Francee’, using hydroponics. They were grown in a greenhouse covered with netting to produce 50% shade. The plants were placed in black polyethylene channels, in a mixture of coarse and fine volcanic cinder substrate, following a random design. During cultivation, there was a long period from August to April in which the plants remained in a latent state, beginning vegetative growth in April, with leaf production ceasing in June. Flowering occurred between May and June, and commercial leaf collection was practicable in June, July and August. The parameters studied were: variations in pH and EC in the nutrient and drainage solutions, concentrations of macro and micronutrients in leaves at two dates during cultivation, number of leaves and buds per plant, plant height, and leaf width and length at the time of picking. Of the five cultivars tested, we concluded that ‘Francee’, with an average-size leaf, yielded the best quality and production. In summary, this plant species has good ornamental value, but due to its long latency period, its use remains limited at present.

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