Volume 5

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Author: F.L. Skinner

PP: 25

I spent the first thirteen years of my life in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, and it was there that I learned to know and love the old roses, the mock-orange, the lilacs, the rhododendrons and a host of other shrubs, trees and flowers. In 1895 when our family arrived in Manitoba there was very little ornamental gardening being done on the Canadian prairies and even in the City of Winnipeg it was several years after our arrival that the first lilac bush opened its flowers there. There were many lovely flowers growing wild on the prairie in those days but I still missed the favourites of my childhood and it was the desire to grow them that started me on my career as a horticultural plant breeder. As soon as I was in a position to do so I imported a collection of about one hundred and forty roses including all the old varieties that were available at that time. Unfortunately none of them proved quite hardy though I was able, by giving them some protection, to keep the hardiest varieties…

Author: Roger C. Coggeshall

PP: 33

The Asiatic maples about which I will speak today are not commonly known in the nursery business today, nor at some of the botanical institutions of this country. The talk has been a result of the two hurricanes which caused such widespread damage over the Eastern part of the country, notably New England several years ago. The utility companies in this area suffered very heavy losses when the large elms and maples growing along our streets were blown down. As the need for newer and smaller street trees developed to replace the giants that caused so much damage in falling, it was evident that methods of plant propagation should be developed to produce these plants. They should be propagated in ways other than seeds. We have a fair representation of these smaller trees in Boston, and they have, until the present time, been grown primarily for seed. Seed propagation, as you know, is by far the cheapest and easiest method to propagate plants.

Author: Charles E. Hess

PP: 43

Nurserymen have tried for many years to propagate Cornus florida rubra from softwood cuttings, yet none have ever reported success at a commercial level. In a few instances one or two cuttings were rooted and overwintered successfully, but whenever large scale production was attempted, only a few cuttings remained alive the following spring. It became apparent that the difficulty in propagating Cornus florida rubra from softwood cuttings is found only partially in the process of rooting, but is mainly a problem of carrying the rooted cuttings through the first winter of dormant period. Many methods have been attempted commercially, such as burying the cuttings of peat moss in a cold frame, or keeping the cuttings inside a greenhouse, but none have resulted in any degree of commercial success. The problem was divided into two parts. The first was to find the most efficient procedure for rooting the cuttings.

Author: Sidney Waxman

PP: 47

It was as far back as the year 1686 that the length of day was observed to effect the growth of plants. Between 1890 and 1905 many workers used arc lamps to determine the effect of additional light on the growth and flowering of various greenhouse plants. Garner and Allard in 1920 carried out a great amount of research proving definitely that long days and short days effected the growth of many herbaceous plants in different ways. The name they gave to this daylength effect was Photoperiodism. To site an example of the effect of the "photoperiod" one can use the chrysanthemum. It will keep growing all summer when the days are long and will flower when the days get shorter as they do in late summer and fall. Much intensive research has been and is being carried out concerning the flowering of herbaceous plants.

Author: Constant De Groot

PP: 51

Korean boxwood is a favorite of ours and we have been growing it for over thirty years. I have heard comments that it is difficult to grow, but we have had quite good success growing it over the years. Korean boxwood from seed is exceedingly variable. Some plants have large leaves; others small leaves. Some plants are green in color; others are colored. Cuttings from some plants root considerably earlier than others. Plants which turn red in winter are much harder to root. These are reasons why it takes two years to get maximum rooting. The time for making boxwood cuttings it just as important as for other cuttings. After many years of experience, we have found that the best time for taking cuttings is early August. The cuttings have to be firm before they will root. If they are too soft, they will shrivel under the glass. It has been our experience that about seventy per cent of the cuttings will root after one year in the greenhouse. That is not a profitable operation.

Author: F.L. (Steve) O&#039Rourke

PP: 54

During the past fifteen years a number of methods have been developed to prevent wilting of leaves of softwood cuttings while in the propagation medium. Water sprays, mist nozzles, fans, insulated opaque chambers with lights, humidified air, etc. have all been used more or less successfully for certain plants under specific conditions. Some systems have been comparatively simple and some rather complex, but all have been designed to lessen hand labor and eliminate detailed attention to the cuttings during the rooting period. A very simple system which was devised in the tropics may prove quite valuable to temperate zone plant propagators for the rooting of cuttings during the summer season. It consists merely of a pit in the ground covered with burlap or cotton cloth which is kept constantly wet by a manually controlled rotary type "lawn sprinkler." The cost of construction and maintenance is slight and the production of rooted cuttings has been highly satisfactory.

Author: Leslie Hancock

PP: 56

Since the Burlap-cloud method of rooting summer softwood cuttings in ordinary soil was described here two years ago, and fully reported in the 1953 Proceedings, my remarks this evening will be very brief. Specimen blocks of rooted cuttings from this year's crop are to be seen with the exhibits. This year we set up an electronic mist control section for comparison with our ordinary burlap covered frames. The only difference from our standard method was that the misting apparatus and full sunshine was substituted for the burlap shade. However, this was not fair to the intermittent mist method. The new bed should have been on higher, more completely drained land, and the recommended wind baffles should have been used. Next year, we will insure perfect drainage and have burlap strips attached to both sides of the frame, which can be fastened up vertically during the hot part of the day.

Author: Thomas B. Kyle

PP: 60

It is not my intent to tell you the details of how to graft junipers, but I thought that some of you, especially those who are primarily growers, might be interested in our method of grafting junipers without potting the rootstock. At one time we grafted on a large commercial scale. We filled several greenhouses with potted grafts for sale to other wholesale growers. Now we just grow a few grafts for our own planting. When we discontinued grafting, we were limited for case space, so we started grafting bare-root. We planted the bare-root grafts directly in the field rather than in frames, and we found that a lot of the tender roots would die. It was decided that the simplest procedure would be to wrap the seedlings and that the simplest wrapper would be a paper handtowel. If you were planning to ship these grafts, it would be necessary to use better paper.

Author: H.A. Borthwick

PP: 63

We have long known that plants are influenced by light in many different ways. For example, the seasonal change in daily duration of light controls flowering of many species, some flowering only when days are short and others only when days are long. Daylength also determines the time of year at which many trees and shrubs cease expansion of new leaves and produce resting buds before the onset of winter. Light is required by some seeds for germination, but it prevents the germination of others. It regulates elongation of stems of some plants and promotes coloration of the ripening fruits of others. It enters into the regulation of growth and development of plants in countless ways that are familiar to us and probably in many others that have not yet come to our attention.

Author: Vernon E. Gifford

PP: 72

The new developments and progress made in flowering chrysanthemums in the past few years have also influenced the propagation of "mums”. It was not too many years ago that propagating mums was generally conceded to be a Spring and early Summer proposition. Plants to be used for stock were selected during the flowering season and held in a more or less dormant or inactive state during the winter. This was accomplished by replanting the selected stock in benches, flats or perhaps cold frames. Low temperatures and low moisture conditions were maintained for the winter period. Plants were held thusly until Spring when they were given conditions necessary for resuming their normal growth. This procedure is still followed in some greenhouses. With the advent of year round flowering of mums which is becoming more and more a common practice, it was necessary that rooted cuttings be also made available any time of the year.

Author: D.S. Blair

PP: 84

Fruit trees, and apples in particular, are usually composed of two genetically distinct parts the root-system developed from the rootstock, and the stem or branch system, grafted upon the rootstock, both functioning together as a single living organic unit. On the other hand most other economic plants are produced either from cuttings or from seeds, and consequently their root and shoot systems are of the same genetic origin and constitution. Apple rootstocks may be raised either from seeds, in which case the stocks are of miscellaneous genetic origin, or they may be raised by a vegetative method such as stooling in which case the stocks are uniform in their genetic composition. In practice there is a range of the vegetatively raised rootstocks each with its own special characteristics. The choice of a rootstock is governed by the aims of the tree propagator.

Author: S.H. Nelson

PP: 91

As Mr. Blair has pointed out in his survey, there are two or three broad types of rootstocks that can be used as understocks for apples. With due respect to seedlings and apomictics, we will leave these and concern ourselves only with clonal rootstocks, for the purpose of this paper. Let us reiterate a little further. It has been brought out that stool bed maintenance is costly and laborious, and even with mechanical aids the production of clonal rootstocks is expensive. Furthermore, with stool beds a rather fixed amount is produced each year and the flexibility required to fit the unstable requirement for apple trees is lacking. Some more flexible method is desired, and cuttings naturally appear to fit this problem. At Ottawa, random attempts have been made over the years to root hardwood cuttings, but with little success. Climatic factors certainly play an important role since we cannot line out cuttings in the field, as is being done in Europe.

Author: Robert C. Simpson

PP: 99

Propagation of horticultural plants by budding and grafting is one of the oldest horticultural practices. In ancient Greece the technique was well known and stock and scion effects noted. Today the actual mechanics are commonly known and relatively simple. Results, however, may depend upon a long series of factors. First I will briefly outline our operation, then mention some of the problems we have encountered. Finally I will go over some of the points we think we have learned. And may I add, I do not presume to speak as an authority, only as one intensely interested in the subject. There are many present who have had more years of experience. If I draw conclusions they know to be in error, I and the rest present will welcome correction. Our understocks are ordered on a five year basis to obtain a price discount, with minor seasonal adjustments made usually by July.

Author: O.A. Matkin

PP: 108

The nursery business has been highly traditional and resistant to change until the past few years. With the introduction of large scale container production and modern sales techniques by a few, the industry has been forced to reconsider the efficiency of its methods and procedures. To those steeped in tradition the changes occurring must seem radical and, perhaps, discouraging. The "Art" of growing is fast giving way to the "science" of growing. Plants are being made to perform to the utmost of their abilities. The procedures employed by the most successful are those of the factory assembly line. It is recognized that all plants have similar basic requirements, that they can and do lend themselves to mass production techniques. It is the purpose of this discussion to take up those basic requirements and explain their use in container culture.

Author: Philip A. Barker

PP: 113

The production of nursery stock in metal containers was begun at Ohio State University in 1953. The project was expanded in 1954 to include a total of 1500 plans of 17 different species and varieties. During the winter of 1954;55 protection tests were conducted with these plants and those that survived, with 3000 additional plants, were included in the 1955 study. Since its beginning the project has been primarily one of determining the adaptability of various ornamental plants to production in containers under Ohio climatic conditions. It is proposed that these plants will be used further in a marketing study to determine customer acceptance of container nursery stock.

Author: John B. Roller

PP: 117

Container-grown trees in Texas are a fairly important subject. In the beginning, may I be permitted just a little missionary work. Container-grown plants and container-grown trees, just like the State of Texas, are with us whether you like it or not. At least, I am firmly convinced they are both here to stay. There has been a great increase in population and a very great building boom in the Southwest as in all other parts of the country. As a result, there is an excellent market for plants and trees of all types. In some of our cities you can see from one place one or even two thousand homes that are under construction or have just been completed. As each home is completed, the home owner wants to plant the garden and it makes no difference if he gets there in June, July, or August. With container-grown material he can immediately plant trees and shrubs and they live. At Verhalen's Nursery, our program for this year called for about 20,000 shade trees in containers.

Author: Jack Hill

PP: 119

It is a little difficult for me to sort out the actual differences between container-grown plants in Illinois and container-grown plants in Arizona, California, Texas, or New England. I believe the thought with which I would like to begin its the analogy of what the container actually is. I have commented to many of you here in this group that there is evidently great preoccupation with the technique of growing plants in a container. Actually, it is the same plant, whether grown in a container or in the field. And the same factors-water, sunlight, minerals, etc.-control the growth of both. The container should properly be thought of as a package. The principal feature is that it is package enabling easy distribution. Another significant point with regard to container-growing, which should be noted early, is the necessity of recognizing the value of uniformity.

Author: Clifford Corliss

PP: 123

Being at the end of the program and following these able speakers on container-grown material, I think the task would be a lot easier for me to tell you what we don't know about growing container stock than what we do know. However, as you well recognize, California is one situation, Texas another, the Midwest another, and we, in Massachusetts, have another. I am going to tell you what we have done. We were one of the very first people to grow small shrubs, especially roses, in Cloverset pots years and years ago. We never got very far with shrub material because if the pots were carried over for a year, or occasionally for two years, that was an expensive operation. But we did very well with roses. Our experience with metal containers is this. I, for one, could not see using a container that had to be cut and until the advent of the Plantainer and the Nursery Can, we did not enter the container business.

Author: John P. Malstede

PP: 129

The session convened at 1:30 o'clock, President Fillmore calling the meeting to order. PRESIDENT FILLMORE: The field Trials Committee, under the guidance of Dr. John Mahlstede of Iowa State College, has been very busy throughout the past year gathering an analyzing information on mist propagation. Those of you who have attended previous meetings of this Society know the intense interest which has attended discussions on this relatively new method of rooting cuttings. It is therefore with a great deal of pleasure that I turn this afternoon session over to Dr. Mahlstede for his report.

Author: Harvey M. Templeton

PP: 131

From the reports that I received this summer, those of you who tried it were pretty disappointed and discouraged with the Electronic Leaf control. I sympathized with you, for I was experiencing the same difficulties myself. Although we developed the "Leaf" and had an experimental model working in the early Fall of 1953, we didn't have the nerve to depend on it for our 1954 production. So it was in March, of this year before we began to use it on our main production. We immediately ran into difficulties. At first we had the wires between the "Leaf" and the control box too long, and the control acted in a very erratic manner. A little experimentation proved that the trouble was due to the capacity effect between the two long wires. By using a very short connection, that trouble was permanently cured. By spring we were using 4 or 5 separate Electronic circuits with 3 or 4 beds on each circuit, attempting to provide a variety of mist conditions, including a hardening-off circuit.

Author: Robert J. Eshleman Jr

PP: 134

I am in full agreement with Mr. Templeton that the Electronic Leaf does have its place, and a high place at that, in plant propagation. I, along with the other 85 percent had my share of trouble with the "Leaf" unit, but they were such that repair was possible and no impairment in the growth of the cuttings resulted. I like plant materials at any stage, young or old, and I like to see them thrive. After a customer receives the plant I take pride in its surviving after it is in his yard. For a plant to do that there is nothing more important than having a good root system, a root system which originated after that cutting was placed in a rooting medium. There were several reasons for my using the intermittent mist setup. Among these were: (1) the fact that I raise a great variety of plants which have different rooting requirements, (2) I prefer a plant on its own roots to one that has been grafted, and (3) the fact that the application of water is done automatically…

Author: Charles Hess Sr

PP: 135

A few years ago I had the pleasure of listening to Mr. Hancock discuss his burlap-cloud method of propagation. His talk interested me so much that the following summer we went up and looked at his operation. I was still more surprised. Seeing his operation led me to believe that we were working at a disadvantage. Our operations were too expensive and therefore it appeared to me that we should cut some corners. With this in mind, last summer we put up an outdoor mist unit using Harvey Templeton's nozzles and a minute interval timing device. We did not start to make cuttings until August 13th. They were collected and trimmed in the usual manner and placed singly in plant bands containing a mixture of one-third vermiculite, one-third styrofoam and one-third peat. We put these bands in a bed which was surrounded with a plastic windshield and covered with cheesecloth. We installed a timing device which operated between 6 A.M. and 8 P.M. at a frequency of one minute on and four minutes off.

Author: A.R. Buckley

PP: 136

Ladies and Gentlemen: First of all, I would like to take this opportunity to express my pleasure at being here at this meeting. We at the Arboretum have quite a different problem from most of you, in that we are primarily concerned with rooting cuttings of woody plants in small numbers. After they have been rooted they are either placed on the grounds or occasionally disseminated to interested personnel. We had this past year the intermittent mist unit operated both with the minute timer and Electronic Leaf, as well as polyethylene tents, which were without mist. We had only minor difficulties with the Electronic Leaf control unit itself, although a malfunction of the solenoid valve necessitated replacement. We started out with the idea of tying to determine what one of the particular methods of propagation was best.

Author: A.B. Ferguson

PP: 137

In our operation we have attempted to develop a system that would take as little labor as possible in hardening-off cuttings propagated under mist and in getting them established in field beds where they can develop. Our efforts up to this point have been experimental, but our results have been so gratifying that we intend expanding the operation next year. Cuttings of Lonicera claveyi, Spirea bumalda crispa, Hydrangea p.g., and Ribes sp. Red Lake, placed under mist on May 18th to May 20th were transplanted on June 20th. Cuttings were made generally from the terminal portion of shoots and ranged between six and ten inches in length. In preparing the bed for transplanting the first operation involved cultivation and leveling. As soon as this has been accomplished the soil was watered thoroughly with all overhead sprinkling system in order to have the soil in a moist workable condition. This was done two or three days before planting.

Author: Merton Congdon

PP: 139

My operation is comparatively small, being confined to softwood cuttings of the more common shrubs. For example, we have been very successful using mist to root the common varieties of such genera as Spiraea, Weigela, Philadelphus, Hydrangea, Ligustrum, Viburnum and Hypericum. I spent considerable time two years ago with Mr. Fillmore while he was employed in Shenandoah, Iowa. Basically our mist beds have been patterned after those which he and Mr. Ward described to the membership last year. Since we were very much dissatisfied with the Electronic Leaf because it was altogether too sensitive to wind eddies, we switched to the 24-hour clock, coupled with the one-minute timer. The 24-hour clock was initially set up to operate between 8:00 o'clock in the morning and 8:00 o'clock in the evening.

Author: Ralph Shugert

PP: 140

Our procedure for handling rooted cuttings from mist is to bring the cuttings to the potting bench and pot directly into cypress plantbands. The cypress bands are set up in flats, and after a flat is filled it goes into a "storage area," for a hardening-off period. In 1953 and 1954 we experienced, in certain varieties, losses immediately after banding-off. This past summer we used a shade house which provided approximately 70% shade. As added insurance, we have two auxiliary mist lines, manually operated, using the Florida "B" type nozzle, with the nozzles spaced on twelve foot centers. The operation of these lines held down top dessication and assisted materially in the development of a secondary root system. After the cuttings have rooted out in the bands, the flats are then moved to an unsheltered propagation area. At this location each band is removed from the flat and placed in beds-five feet in width-on a sand base.

Author: Dale Sweet

PP: 141

I would like to discuss a few points about the propagation and survival of difficult-to-root plants. There are certain fruit stocks which we are particularly interested in from the standpoint of being able to root them economically on a commercial basis. The mound or trench layering method of propagating fruit stocks is laborious, necessitates the use of heavy equipment and takes a lot of crop land out of production. Consequently, for the propagation of such material as the Mahaleb Cherry, which has to be clonally propagated, it would be desirable to have a simple method of rooting cuttings. This project has been under study for the last two or three years at Michigan State. Our research has made use of a combination of several techniques and practices currently in use. One is the mist technique.