|Authors: ||F. Buwalda, R. Baas, P.A. van Weel|
|Keywords: ||chrysanthemum morifolium, cultivation system, mineral nutrition, oxygen deficiency, production, recirculation, root die-back|
We developed a closed cultivation system with ebb-and-flow irrigation for chrysanthemums, in which only 15 cm3 of substrate per plant is used in the form of a small, fibrous plug.
A series of experiments was conducted, aimed at optimization of production factors in the root-zone, i.e. mineral nutrition, irrigation frequency and root aeration.
Nutrient uptake was efficient, as shown by influx concentrations for N and K, which were considerably higher than concentrations in the bulk nutrient solution.
There was little difference between four ebb-and flow treatments in production or mineral nutrition, but severe waterlogging symptoms developed in completely stagnant nutrient solution culture.
In over 2 years of experimentation, it was possible to produce chrysanthemums of a constant good quality, and the system showed a high productivity.
Although no chemical or physical sterilization was applied, no problems with root diseases were encountered.
The high productivity indicates that the ebb-and flow system may have advantages over soil-based cultivation.
However, it is still uncertain whether these advantages are large enough to make the system economically competitive.
Download Adobe Acrobat Reader (free software to read PDF files)