Evaluation of wood fiber as component of substrates for container nursery crops
In these trials we compare the effect of wood fiber (WF) in replacing peat (P) at different percentages in potted plant cultivation with the aim to reduce the environmental impact of ornamental plant production, considering that most of them are cultivated on peat based media. In order to explore the problem of the increasing lack of microorganisms in the substrate and to solve the problem of soil borne pathogens with a preventing system, one of the substrates contained Trichoderma spp. The four evaluated substrates have been: 100% peat (P) as control, 30% wood fiber (WF) - 70% P, 30% WF - 70% P amended with Trichoderma spp. (1 kg m-3) and 50% WF NDASH 50% P. The substrates were tested on three species (Juniperus communis 'Repanda', Juniperus communis 'Prince of Wales' and Ribes uva-crispa 'Hinnonmaki Rot'), in an experimental randomized block design. Root growth (visual rating on a 0-5 scale) was evaluated after three and ten weeks after transplanting in August an October. Different combinations of fiber and peat in the media allowed better results than total peat medium. We concluded that it is possible to produce nursery crops in a sustainable way in container cultivation. In conclusion wood fiber results to be a valid alternative to peat at 30 and 50% level. According to the results, WF appears an interesting component of substrates able to improve sustainable production and plant growth of nursery crops.
Beretta, D. and Ripamonti, M. (2021). Evaluation of wood fiber as component of substrates for container nursery crops. Acta Hortic. 1305, 77-82
peat, potted plant, sustainable product, extrusion