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Effect of calcium chloride and salicylic acid solutions on the vase life of Heliconia spp.

Akintoye, H. A., Shokalu, O. A., Olatunji, M. T., Adebayo, A. G., Aina, O. O., James, I. E.
Acta horticulturae 2018 no.1225 pp. 205-210
Heliconia, acid treatment, beautification, bracts, calcium chloride, calyx, celebrations, cut flowers, floriculture, freshness, longevity, research institutions, salicylic acid, shelf life, sucrose, tap water, vase life, water content, Nigeria
Heliconias are cut flowers used for beautification of homes, offices and during celebrations. Clients get better value when their shelf life is extended. This experiment was conducted at the Floriculture laboratory, National Horticultural Research Institute (NIHORT), Ibadan, Nigeria (7°25”N; 3°52”E) to investigate the effect of inorganic vase solutions on the longevity of cut Heliconia flowers. Treatments included salicylic acid (100, 200, 300 mg L(-1)) and CaCl(2).2H(2)O (1000, 2000, 3000 mg L(-1)) plus or minus 4% (w/v) sucrose, respectively, and tap water as control. The experiment was arranged in a completely randomized design with four replicates. Data were collected on the number of opened bracts and sepals, fresh weight, relative water content and quality rating of flower freshness. The highest number of wilted sepals and bracts occurred with salicylic acid at 200 and 300 mg L(-1), respectively, at day 9, while no wilted sepals was recorded with CaCl(2).2H(2)O 1000 mg L(-1) + sucrose. Flower vase life was significantly improved with CaCl(2).2H(2)O > tap water > salicylic acid. Longest vase life was achieved with the use of 3000 mg L-1 CaCl(2).2H(2)O + sucrose while the shortest vase life was observed with the salicylic acid treatment.