Senetti culture seems complicated at first. Once you are familiar with the basic needs of pericallis, it is very programmable and an easy crop.
- Planting from cuttings requires mist house conditions. Under minimum night temperatures of 68°F and 90% air humidity, the cuttings need 10-14 days for the first roots to come out.
Optimum tray size is 50 or 72-cell.
- Once roots are visible, cuttings may still require misting during the warmest hours of the day. Morning mist and late afternoon mist should be avoided. At this stage, begin fertilizer
applications. Start with a low concentration of liquid fertilizer, around 70 ppm N in a balanced mixture.
- Increase light levels from 2000 footcandles in propagation to 3000 footcandles to harden the liners. Closely monitor moisture levels. Senettis don’t like it too wet.
- Five weeks after sticking cuttings, it is time to transplant into finished pots.
Baby Senetti – 4-inch to 8-inch pots, one plant per pot
Senetti – 6-inch to 10-inch pots, one plant per pot, 12 inches and larger – 2-3 liners per container
- Plants can handle full sun October through March. Provide light shade in the South later in the season. Plants perform best under 5000-6000 footcandles.
- Continue to monitor moisture. Permanently wet soil will lead to Thielaviopsis root infections. Under wet conditions, use preventative fungicide drenches.
- Senetti likes fertilizer applications on the higher side, but roots are sensitive to high salt levels. Applications of 250 ppm N are optimum but EC levels should not be above 2000 mS.
- Prevent stretching by using an ammonium dominant fertilizer. Nitrate leads to soft stretched nodes.
- Senetti is also iron hungry, which is why pH should be kept at 5.6-5.8 to enhance uptake. In areas with alkaline water, iron chelate applications are advised.
- Three weeks before sales start, phosphorous will support flowers, intensifying color, and size. Liquid applications with 10-30-20 during flowering increases phosphorous.
- Watch for internode stretch in dark weather conditions and at the stage of buds forming to flowering. Cycocel and B-Nine will not delay flowering. Once the first flowers are opened
completely, Bonzi drench can be applied for a stronger effect to prevent stretching and extend shelf life at retail.
Fast Track or Slow Finish?
- SLOW: if the plant has rooted into the pot completely, temperatures can be reduced to 40°F nights and 55°F day temperatures. This cold strategy requires a longer crop time but prevents plant stretch and can be good for empty space available in winter months. Expect the crop to finish in 8-inch pots in 12 weeks from the rooted liner.
- FAST: Temperatures at 60°F nights and 70°F days will speed up plant development significantly. Plant stretch must be watched carefully and growth regulator applied accordingly. An 8-inch Senetti crop will finish in 8 weeks from the rooted liner.
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