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Keywords:

  • strawberry;
  • plug plants;
  • fresh plants;
  • Chandler;
  • Camarosa;
  • tray;
  • organic horticulture;
  • propagation

Abstract

This research was carried out during the growing seasons of 2003–2004 and 2004–2005 years in Aydın province in Turkey. Aydın is 50 km from the Aegean Sea, at an altitude of 74 m. Field performance of strawberry plants that were propagated and grown organically were investigated in order to determine the marketable yield. Chandler and Camarosa runner plants were planted separately in trays containing either perlite, peat, a 1:1 mix of perlite + peat, or sand for rooting. Fifty-cell plug trays filled with peat were used for rooting plug plants. Rooted plants grown in either peat, perlite, the 1:1 mixture or sand were considered as fresh plants. Cold-stored and bare-root (frigo) nursery plants were used as controls. Results of the present study showed that peat-grown and plug plants rooted and grew more vigorously than those grown in perlite, the perlite + peat mix or sand in the rooting unit. Plug plants had a high field performance in terms of marketable yield in organic conditions. Yields were higher and better than fresh plants and equal to bare-root cold-stored plants. In conclusion we suggest that strawberry runner plants can be easily propagated in plugs under organic conditions and used successfully for growing strawberries organically. Copyright © 2007 Society of Chemical Industry