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Video: Harvest Components: Light - Blue, Red, Purple
Read the previous part. ← Yield components: resistance of varieties and hybrids to various diseases
Tomato Pink Pioneer F1
When growing seedlings at our latitude, it was noted: the later sowing is possible, and, therefore, there is more light, the stronger the plants will be. In St. Petersburg, until April, the weather is usually cloudy, the sun peeps out only occasionally.
In summer, the illumination in the greenhouse is 3-5 thousand lux, and in winter on the windowsill and on the sunny side, the intensity is only 500 lux. In winter and early spring, short daylight hours are only 6-8 hours, and blue-violet rays in it are five times less than in summer.
Due to the lack of blue light in the spectrum, plants stretch out and lie down. Not all glass panes transmit blue and blue-violet rays. The mechanism of action of light rays of different wavelengths on plants is not yet fully understood. But we can firmly say that the spectral composition of light regulates the basic life processes in the plant organism.
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In plants, photoreceptor pigment systems have been found, which in turn are associated with phytohormones. The photoreceptor is triggered by a very small amount of light, but the correct wavelength. For example, a small amount of "red" light (wavelength 660 nanometers) absorbed by the phytochrome pigment includes seed germination, cell elongation, synthesis of chlorophyll and anthocyanin and some other processes, and the "far red" light (wavelength is about 730 nanometers) turns off.
Blue and violet rays stimulate cell division, but delay cell expansion. This means that if you want to get an early harvest and healthy seedlings with early sowing of seeds of peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, you need to use additional illumination for seedlings with the radiation spectrum necessary for the culture. Radiation with a wavelength of 380-710 nm (PAR) is a source of energy for the process of photosynthesis.
A small short-term lack of illumination can be compensated by slightly lowering the air temperature in the room. There is a rule: the less illuminated the plants, the lower the temperature should be. Now there are many good LED lamps, you can use them, for example, the EP-V-71-01 LED lamp.
It's time to adopt the "power of light" - it will save you from many failures.
If we are talking about seedlings, I note that many have problems with the substrate for growing it. Unfortunately, soils are not always of good quality. It is better to use a coconut substrate, it does not contain pathogenic microflora, the fibrous coconut substrate works as a favorable environment for the development of the root system, since it consists not only of long and thick roots, but also of microscopic ones.
In addition, this substrate works like a wick, distributing moisture over the entire surface of the fibers, as a result, the plant does not lose time for root development. It is known that the lack of oxygen is most often felt during seed germination, development of root systems in conditions of waterlogging.
It is advisable to sprinkle the sown seeds with vermiculite. Such sowing creates the most optimal germination mode: vermiculite holds moisture well and does not allow the top layer of the substrate to dry out. To feed seedlings, you can use low concentrations of soluble fertilizers, for example, TerraflexGF (10 + 11 + 32 + 3 + MgO + micro), it contains chelates. In natural conditions, there are natural chelates, which are formed when the rhizosphere interacts with soil salts.
But when growing seedlings on peat, coconut substrate, the necessary trace elements must be given to plants in an easily assimilated form, which is impossible when using a composition that does not contain chelating agents. The introduction of chelators into the solution makes it easy to solve this problem.
For example, an Israeli company is now producing a special seedling substrate that includes coconut substrate, vermiculite, foam softener, slow-dissolving (long-lasting) fertilizers and mushroom culture, which work very well with the root system.
Symbioses in the plant kingdom are very complex. An example of a triple symbiosis was discovered by American biologists. The heat-resistant grass Dichanthelium lanuginosum grows on hot soil near geothermal springs. It was previously found that the amazing resistance of this plant to high temperatures is somehow related to the fungus Curvularia protuberata that lives in its tissues.
If you grow a plant and a mushroom separately from each other, then neither one nor the other organism can withstand prolonged heating above + 38 ° C, but together they grow well on soil with a temperature of + 65 ° C. Investigating this symbiotic system, scientists discovered that there is also a third obligatory participant in it - an RNA-containing virus that lives in the cells of the fungus.
Scientists have found that a fungus, only infected with a virus, is able to increase heat resistance. And not only in its natural host, but also in unrelated plants belonging to the dicotyledonous class, in particular, tomatoes. True, so far I have not noticed such soils on sale, maybe they will appear.
Pepper Aristotle F1
There is such a thing as the photoperiodic reaction of plants. The duration of illumination affects the growth rate and the nature of plant development, including flowering. Breeders have created varieties that respond less harshly to changes in lighting duration. For example, modern cucumber hybrids already bear fruit well in long day conditions, many radish hybrids do not shoot and have good shade tolerance.
Temperature conditions - sharp heat or cold, drying of plants, growing with a limited level of mineral nutrition can also change photoperiodic sensitivity. It is necessary to select stable hybrids and follow agricultural techniques.
Problems can arise with a sharp change in the light regime, when, for example, you transfer seedlings from a dark window sill to the greenhouse, or when after a long period of cloudy weather in the greenhouse, the intensity and duration of sunlight increases sharply. If there was no gradual change in external conditions (hardening to light), then the plant does not have time to rebuild the work of the photosynthetic apparatus, as a result, it experiences stress.
This is expressed in a delay in its growth and development, separation in the activity of the root system and above-ground organs (especially in cucumber), in the appearance of necrosis on the leaves. Therefore, preliminary light hardening (adaptation) of seedlings is necessary before planting them in open ground.
The question is often asked: why the tomatoes from the store do not taste the same as in the garden? The fact is that up to 80% of the carbohydrates contained in the fruits of tomatoes are synthesized in the leaves and subsequently transported to the fruits. And this is practically impossible because of the practice of the wholesale producers of vegetables, including tomatoes, harvesting until maturity. Therefore, if you want to enjoy the real taste of vegetables, grow them on your site. And what kind of varieties is a matter of taste and possibilities.
Currently, vegetable seed production is located in many countries in the best soil and climatic zones of the world, which is why I do not call for dividing seeds by nationality.
We will proceed from the main factors: high quality traditional breeding, based on the requirements of the climatic zone, and intensive testing in order to find the best variety for each individual garden plot. I briefly talked about the nuances of our climate and its effect on vegetable plants.
You need to understand that without creating the necessary conditions for the plant, it is impossible to realize the full potential of the variety. Everything is in your hands, success is in skill and knowledge. Give preference to hybrids already grown in your area, conduct your own tests of new hybrids in the conditions of your site, choose the quality of plants and fruits based on your needs.
Considering the fact that in amateur practice it is impossible to create sterility available in industrial greenhouses, high agricultural technology and other conditions necessary for a plant, in my opinion, hybrids for amateurs should be selected the most stable in all respects. In this case, the errors of amateurs will be compensated by the force of hybrid heterosis.
After finishing this article, I gave it to my granddaughter to read, and she is very interested in biology. "Strict reviewer", having carefully read it, made significant comments: she asked me to advise - that he and his mother should be put in the country, so that it would be cool and fun and win-win.
Tomato Shakira F1
What can I advise a young reviewer?
There are many very good hybrids now. For example, among tomatoes - this is Shakira F1, a hybrid of the "Biff" type - the seedlings do not stretch, the weight of the fruit is 250 g; from yellow-fruited tomatoes - Gualdino F1 - sweet carp, fruit weight 120 g, Sindel F1 - early, carpal, stored for two months, fruit weight 140 g
Hybrid Pink Pioneer F1 - forms pink elliptical fruits with excellent taste and weight 160-180 g, and Lancelot F1 has the most original elongated fruits of amazing taste weighing 120 g. And, of course, I would highlight cherry tomatoes - Cherie Blosem F1 - very sweet and aromatic.
Peppers are a hybrid Aristotle F1, a huge, thick-walled cuboid fruit. And for everyone in our family, beloved lecho, it should be some sort of prismatic fruit (Lamuyo type), there is a choice here. This time, the granddaughter chose a pepper from the selection of Israel (Erma Zaden).
Of the cucumbers, the granddaughter likes parthenocarpics of the Seminis selection, they are excellent salted and grow without problems.
So, together with the younger generation, we found out that much in achieving success in the garden depends on skill and diligence, and, of course, also on the hybrids worked out with the expectation of our conditions. Good luck to everyone in the not so simple gardening of risky farming in the North-Western climatic zone!
Vladimir Stepanov, Doctor of Biological Sciences
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