The effects of day and night temperature on Chrysanthemum morifolium: investigating the safe limits for temperature integration

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Adams, S. R. (Steven R.) ; Valdes, V. M. ; Fuller, D. (Debbie) (2009)
  • Publisher: Headley Brothers Ltd.
  • Subject: SB

The impact of day and night temperatures on pot chrysanthemum (cultivars ‘Covington’ and ‘Irvine’) was assessed by exposing cuttings, stuck in weeks 39, 44, and 49, to different temperature regimes in short-days. Glasshouse heating setpoints of 12°, 15°, 18°, and 21°C, were used during the day, with venting at 2°C above these set-points. Night temperatures were then automatically manipulated to ensure that all of the treatments achieved similar mean diurnal temperatures. Plants were grown according to commercial practice and the experiment was repeated over 2 years. Increasing the day temperature from approx. 19°C to 21°C, and compensating by reducing the night temperature, did not have a significant impact on flowering time, although plant height was increased.This suggests that a temperature integration strategy which involves higher vent temperatures, and exploiting solar gain to give higher than normal day temperatures, should have minimal impact on crop scheduling. However, lowering the day-time temperature to approx. 16°C, and compensating with a warmer night, delayed flowering by up to 2 weeks. Therefore, a strategy whereby, in Winter, more heat is added at night under a thermally-efficient blackout screen may result in flowering delays.Transfers between the temperature regimes showed that the flowering delays were proportional to the amount of time spent in a low day-time temperature regime. Plants flowered at the same time, irrespective of whether they were transferred on a 1-, 2-, or 4-week cycle.
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