Evaluation of growing media for vegetable seedlings.
An agronomic evaluation of vegetable seedlings under
greenhouse conditions was made at the Fabio Baudrit
Moreno Agricultural Research Station, Alajuela, Costa Rica,
from April 12th to May 7th. The selected vegetables tomato,
cucumber, broccoli and lettuce were established in plastic
containers filled with different growing media. When the
plants achieved transplant conditions, vigor values,
germination, plant development and adobe quality were
evaluated. The substrates that allowed the best tomato,
cucumber and broccoli plant development were Juan Viñas
compost, earthworm castings + Juan Viñas compost + rice
hulk, and Juan Viñas compost + rice hulk. Substrates partially
composted of Gmelina arborea sawdust + soil + rice hulk,
and peat moss + perlite, were good substrates for the lettuce.
The partially composted Gmelina arborea sawdust + coconut
coir + bagasse ashes, Juan Viñas compost + partially
composted Gmelina arborea sawdust + rice hulk; and sugar
cane bagasse + partially composted Gmelina arborea sawdust
+ Juan Viñas compost substrates provided excellent adobe
quality, although plant development lacked vigour. The
substrates fermented soil, coconut coir, commercial substrate
2, and sugar cane bagasse + coconut coir + pumice were the
worst growing media, constraining plant growth.