Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Landscape Architecture

Major Professor

Donald B. Williams

Committee Members

Hendrik van de Werken, John W. Day


This study was initiated to investigate the effects of some cultural practices and chemical treatments that may enhance the establishment of transplanted woody ornamentals. The treatments studied were the application of indole-3-butyric acid (IBA), thiamine hydrochloride (vitamin B1), a complete fertilizer (analysis 4-10-3), super phosphate (analysis 0-46-0) and two cultural practices of peat as a backfill soil amendment and a shredded hardwood bark as a mulch over the root zone. These treatments were applied singly and in several combinations. The plants used for this study were Euonymus kiautschovicus, Loes., 'Manhattan', Acer saccharum, Marsh., and Liquidambar styracflua, L.. The parameters measured on the Acer and Liquidambar species were length increase of central leader, caliper increase of trunk and weight of new roots. The parameters measured on the Euonymus were leaf color, number of budbreaks, top growth weight and new root growth weight. A summary of the findings shows that the application of IBA alone or thiamine alone, at all the rates tested, had either no effect or a negative effect on the parameters measured. A complete fertilizer (analysis 4-10-3) enhanced growth when applied at the two higher rates tested. The fertilizer by itself enhanced growth equally as well as a treatment consisting of a corresponding rate of fertilizer, plus IBA and thiamine. Superphosphate incorporated into the backfill soil resulted in no effect or a negative effect on the parameters measured. Shredded bark mulch applied alone, resulted in minimum positive effects on plant growth. Combination treatments of IBA, thiamine, 4-10-3 fertilizer (at the higher rates), plus peat as a backfill amendment and shredded bark as a mulch enhanced growth most and resulted in more healthy looking plants than did any of the other treatments. Conclusions reached in this study show that the application of a mixture of IBA, thiamine and 4-10-3 fertilizer can be somewhat beneficial to the establishment and growth of transplanted woody ornamental plants, however nearly identical benefits can be obtained by applying 4-10-3 fertilizer by itself.

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