by Dr. Mohyuddin Mirza (May 2009)

This has been an unusual spring. The temperature has been consistently going just below zero and snow was there on May 19th.  Traditionally Victoria Day weekend is very busy for bedding plant growers and a significant amount of income comes in during this week.  I talked to many growers and learned that they were way behind in their revenues compared to many good years.  Besides economic impact of such weather, growers must understand and know how to manage plants in cloudy, cold, clammy conditions.  There is a danger of plants getting leggy and lanky and spindly growth may take place.  Due to higher relative humidity dew could easily be formed inside the greenhouse and botrytis gray mold could become devastating.  I received many phone calls about geranium flowers showing botrytis infections and also pythium root rot.  So here are few things you can do with the plants so that when good weather returns and customers come back, good quality plants greet them, not yellow, leggy, pale looking plants. Customers like good green, flowering plants with lot of buds on them.

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