Rooting of selected ornamental shrubs in substrates based on miscanthus straw

P. Bąbelewski, M. Pancerz
Highmoor peat is a substrate component commonly used for rooting cuttings. The decrease of peatland areas through exploitation has resulted in a number of peatland protection programs regulated by law. As a result, the horticulture industry will need to find alternatives for this substrate. The aim of this research was to assess the suitability of substrates based on non-composted Miscanthus × giganteus Greef et Deu. straw mixed in different ratios with peat and river sand for rooting shoot cuttings of Spiraea densiflora Nutt. ex Greenm., Taxus × media Rehder 'Hicksii', Euonymus fortunei (Turcz.) Hand.-Mazz 'Emerald Gold' and Cotoneaster dammeri C. K. Schneid. 'Major'. The following substrates with peat (P), sand (S) and miscanthus (M) ratios were used: 95%P+5%S, 65%P+5%S+30%M, 45%P+5%S+50%M, 25%P+5%S+ 70%M and 5%S+95%M. The biomass and percentage of rooted cuttings were measured and the root:shoot ratio was calculated. Spiraea obtained the highest root, shoot and total weight in 65%P+5%S+30%M, 45P+5%S+50%M and 25%P+5%S+ 70%M, while the lowest was in 95%P+5%S and 5%S+95%M. In Taxus the highest shoot and total weight was observed in 5%S+95%M, while root weight and root:shoot ratio was the highest in 45%P+5%S+50%M. The highest shoot and total weight of Euonymus was observed in 45%P+5%S+50%M, 25%P+5%S+70%M and 5%S+95%M, while the highest root weight and root:shoot ratio in 95%P+5%S. Cotoneaster obtained the highest root and total weight and the highest percentage of rooting in 65%P+5%S+30%M, 45%P+5%S+50%M and 25%P+5%S+70%M. The type of substrate did not affect the root:shoot ratio and percentage of rooting for Spiraea, Taxus and Euonymus, nor did it affect shoot weight of Euonymus. Based on these results, it can be stated for the tested species that the suitable substrates for rooting were 65%P+5%S+30%M, 45%P+5%S+50%M and 25%P+5%S+70%M.
Bąbelewski, P. and Pancerz, M. (2018). Rooting of selected ornamental shrubs in substrates based on miscanthus straw. Acta Hortic. 1191, 175-182
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2018.1191.24
peat alternative, fresh weight, dry weight

Acta Horticulturae