Peat is the most representative component in the preparation of growing media used in horticulture. However, environmental issues and increased production costs, related to peat extraction and commercialization, are stimulating the use of new materials and technologies as alternatives to peat-based growing media. Among other locally-produced materials, green compost is one of the most promising alternatives for peat substitution although its variability in terms of physico-chemical characteristics represents the main constraint. In the present work, two composts, differing in terms of the initial composting raw materials, were evaluated for peat substitution and their influence on plant growth and quality, nutrient and water uptake, and gaseous exchange activity. A bedding plant (geranium), cultivated in an intensive growing system, was chosen as the test plant and 100% peat as the control. During the greenhouse experiment, plants were grown in five different growing media, i.e. only peat, 30% and 50% peat volume replaced by the two composts. Growing medium characteristics, plant growth and biometric parameters, water and nutrient uptake, and gaseous exchange activity were evaluated as crop performance indicators. The green compost derived from mixed raw material negatively influenced plant nutrition and photosynthesis, thus significantly reducing plant biomass accumulation and quality. The green compost derived from selected material was found to be a valuable growing medium for peat substitution. This thus supports the widespread opinion that high-quality compost can be produced through the selection of composting material.

Evaluation of two green composts for peat substitution in geranium ( Pelargonium zonale L.) cultivation: Effect on plant growth, quality, nutrition, and photosynthesis

MALORGIO, FERNANDO;CARMASSI, GIULIA;
2018-01-01

Abstract

Peat is the most representative component in the preparation of growing media used in horticulture. However, environmental issues and increased production costs, related to peat extraction and commercialization, are stimulating the use of new materials and technologies as alternatives to peat-based growing media. Among other locally-produced materials, green compost is one of the most promising alternatives for peat substitution although its variability in terms of physico-chemical characteristics represents the main constraint. In the present work, two composts, differing in terms of the initial composting raw materials, were evaluated for peat substitution and their influence on plant growth and quality, nutrient and water uptake, and gaseous exchange activity. A bedding plant (geranium), cultivated in an intensive growing system, was chosen as the test plant and 100% peat as the control. During the greenhouse experiment, plants were grown in five different growing media, i.e. only peat, 30% and 50% peat volume replaced by the two composts. Growing medium characteristics, plant growth and biometric parameters, water and nutrient uptake, and gaseous exchange activity were evaluated as crop performance indicators. The green compost derived from mixed raw material negatively influenced plant nutrition and photosynthesis, thus significantly reducing plant biomass accumulation and quality. The green compost derived from selected material was found to be a valuable growing medium for peat substitution. This thus supports the widespread opinion that high-quality compost can be produced through the selection of composting material.
2018
Massa, Daniele; Malorgio, Fernando; Lazzereschi, Sara; Carmassi, Giulia; Prisa, Domenico; Burchi, Gianluca
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Sci Hort 2018 geranium.pdf

solo utenti autorizzati

Tipologia: Versione finale editoriale
Licenza: NON PUBBLICO - Accesso privato/ristretto
Dimensione 421.65 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
421.65 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia
HORTI-S-16-01566 geranio.pdf

accesso aperto

Tipologia: Documento in Pre-print
Licenza: Creative commons
Dimensione 972.45 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
972.45 kB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/875770
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 43
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 41
social impact