PRODUCTION OF ORNAMENTAL FOLIAGE PLANTS
Important factors that affect foliage plant production are: cultivars, potting mixtures, water, nutrition, light and temperature. POTTING MIXTURES: A wide variety of potting ingredients can be used to grow foliage plants, but aeration, water-holding capacity and cation exchange capacity must be considered to grow good quality plants. WATER: Large quantities of water are used to produce foliage plants, as much as 400 kiloliters per hectare per week. Some plants require irrigation daily, but others can be irrigated as infrequently as once every one or two weeks. Ground water contamination by foliage producers is a growing concern. NUTRITION: Fertilization of foliage plants has a direct affect on growth of foliage plants. Some plants tolerate a wide range of fertilization, while others require a limited level. Soluble salts and nutrient ratio are important factors that influence optimum growth. LIGHT: Plants must have adequate light for photosynthesis to provide food manufacture. Foliage plants vary in their tolerance of light, but most require light intensities of 150 – 600 μmol·s-1 ·m-2. TEMPERATURE: As temperature increases, rate of plant growth increases until the optimum is reached; further increase in temperature results in a decrease in growth. Most ornamental foliage plants are killed by 0°C, do not grow at 10°, and grow best at 25–30°. These factors and their interactions with each other will be discussed in the published paper.
Poole, R. T. and Conover, C. A. (1989). PRODUCTION OF ORNAMENTAL FOLIAGE PLANTS. Acta Hortic. 246, 145-154