University of Vermont Extension System
Department of Plant and Soil Science

Perennial Container Production--finishing
Leonard P. Perry, Extension Professor


--UVM nursery study with daylilies, salable growth at 100ppm N, maximum growth at 400ppm N
--lower rates mean less fertilizer cost and runoff
--often excess fertility may result in excess foliage and fewer flowers

CRF fertility

    --often similar results with CRF or liquid --easier at mixing, less chance of burn
--often no growth differences (UVM study) --timed may release when little growth
--temperature ones may release too quickly or slowly depending on crop
--new temperature release products by region

Organic Fertility

Media --decisions often function of cost, availability, preferences for ingredients
--UVM studies showed similar growth between bark-based media
--UVM studies showed similar growth among peat-lite, and media containing coir (coconut husk) rockwool, compost
--compost-based had similar growth, but poor water retention and rooting-- look at roots, not just tops --weed seeds, diseases, needs pasteurizing

Media Amendments

--average 20-40% solids, rest air and water --UVM study showed no improvement using, often less growth at higher levels

Keys to media success

Light --300-400ft-c, 16hrs Height control --results in more compact, often from just air movement as HAF (horizontal air flow) --night temperature = day temperature (65 ° avg.), sunrise, lower by 5-10° for 2 hours
--may result in less fertility needed, works for many perennials --generally no PGRs (plant growth regulators), use cultural instead
--if use, effective on wide range of species
--B-Nine 2,500-5,000ppm, Sumagic 5-15ppm
--sprench: between drench with runoff, and spray; directed spray; coarse spray


Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture. Lawrence Forcier, Director, UVM Extension System, Burlington, Vermont. University of Vermont Extension System and U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone, without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, and marital or familial status.

coh19, 2/03