Friday, July 23, 2010

Spotlight on Selecta's Christmas Day

Here is one of the new varieties that we are growing this year.  The poinsettia name is Christmas Day.  Christmas  Day is a Dark Red Bract plant  with large cyathias (the actual flower).  It is an energy efficient plant that has a great "V" shape, strong branches and a medium vigor.  As energy costs, as well as other input costs continue to rise, we are always looking for new plants that will allow us to grow the best plant with the least amount input cost.  This plant will allow us to keep the greenhouse a bit cooler than some of the older varieties as well, hopefully, eliminate the need for expensive growth regulators.
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Monday, July 19, 2010

from unrooted cuttings to rooted cuttings...we're sticking!

Here is the latest installment of the poinsettia crop 2010.  Last week the poinsettias finally had enough new roots and the plants were making a few new leaves that I decided it was time to start planting.  So on Thursday, we started filling pots with potting soil and setting them on the benches.  They are grouped in various sizes based on the variety and the number of plants per pot.  Here are a couple pictures showing a few of the poinsettias planted and a shot of the pots dibbled (holes poked in the soil to allow for the rooted Oasis wedge.  Enjoy the pictures.

The variety to the above-left is called Christmas Feelings Red.  The cuttings are very consistent in stem caliper, length and root structure.  These plants are off to a great start.
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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Spotlight on............

Over the next few blogs I will spotlight a certain variety that I am growing.  The first in this series of blogs will be our flagship poinsettia, Prestige and Early Prestige.

Prestige is a star poinsettia because it does everything a grower wants in a poinsettia and does it well.  Included in that list is a great shape.  Ideally, you want to see poinsettias with a nice "V" shape.  Strong branches is another desirable trait.  Prestige and Early Prestige can survive shipping, sleaving, delivery, sleaving, etc quite well.  The stems don't break as easily as some of its predecessors.

Both of these varieties come from Ecke Poinsettias and the color is deep red bracts with dark green leaves.  Early prestige is marketable around mid November for me, while Prestige is ready the first week in December.

It is a winner!

Monday, July 5, 2010

poinsettias.....still rooting.

After numerous days of losing leaves and plants with the first group of poinsettias, I think I won't be losing much more.  I did a quick count and guess I lost probably 700 out of 3000.  Way way way too many!

However, on the adjacent bench, the poinsettias look fantastic.  I have never seen a more consistent group of poinsettias as those that are there from the second sticking.  Pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

more roots...on the poinsettia cuttings

As I arrived at work this morning, I walked out in the greenhouse and noticed more roots forming.  We are entering the next phase of propagation which is the callus and the roots.  Less mist is required but the Oasis Wedge (the rooting media) must stay moist.  If it dries out, the wedge will never rehydrate.

To circumvent some of those problems, I have been using a capillary mat.  Capillary mats allow for irrigation from the bottom up.  The benefit is dry leaves with moist rooting stems.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Poinsettia Roots forming

I have two benches of poinsettias, the first group is Ecke Prestige Red and Early Prestige Red. These poinsettias concerned me because I was losing a lot of leaves and have experienced some rotting.

The other bench is Selecta poinsettias (different hybridizer) and those poinsettias have looked wonderful. I have lost leaves, but nothing like the first group.

The only difference is that the first group was stuck June 15 while the second group was stuck June 24.

This morning I walked out to the poinsettias and started pulling a few of the first bench poinsettias out from the trays. The good news is even though the plants don't look as nice as the second group, they are starting to show roots.