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Organic Growing Media: How Can it Affect the Health of My Transplants?

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About the Webinar

Organic vegetable farmers often use growing media to produce transplants for field and high tunnel production. In this session we will share results of research comparing seedling performance of tomato and cucurbit seedlings in commercially available organic growing media. How does the plant performance relate to the chemical and physical characteristics of the growing media? How do added organic fertilizers influence the seedling growth? How do the different growing media influence the microbes in the plant rhizosphere, and what could that mean for health of the seedling? In addition, we will provide an overview of organic growing media listed by OMRI. We expect this webinar will help growers better evaluate and manage growing media for high quality transplant production.

About the Presenters

Wenjing Guan. Wenjing Guan is a Clinical Engagement Assistant Professor in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University. She is a horticultural specialist, and doing applied research in sustainable specialty crop production.

Lori Hoagland. Lori Hoagland is an Associate Professor and Soil Microbial Ecologist in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University. The long-term goal of her research and associated teaching program is to support the specialty crop industry by identifying practical approaches to manage microbial communities that can help plants acquire nutrients, suppress diseases and prevent uptake of heavy metals into edible plant tissues.

Petrus Langenhoven. Petrus Langenhoven is an Extension Specialist in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University. His specialization in hydroponics and vegetable crop production allows him to leverage research and Extension programming around new technologies, high tunnel and greenhouse management, and open field vegetable production. He serves as Co-Director of the Purdue Student Farm and Co-Chair of the Indiana Horticultural Conference & Expo.

Liz Maynard. Liz Maynard is a Clinical Engagement Associate Professor in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University. She serves as Extension specialist in vegetable production, conducting applied research and developing information resources to improve vegetable farming.  

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