Department of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695-7609,
Journal of Applied Horticulture, 2013, volume 15, issue 2, pages 87-89.
Abstract: Foliar sprays of benzyladenine (BA) at concentrations of 100 to 1600 mg L1 were applied 14 days after potting (DAP) onto Salvia nemorosa (L.) Caradonna' to determine if it would increase branching and flowering. At 28 DAP, BA foliar sprays > 400 mg L1 controlled plant height, > 200 mg L1 resulted in smaller plant diameter, 100 mg L1 controlled growth index and inhibited flowering. Phytotoxicity in the form of leaf edge necrosis was observed at 1600 mg L1 BA. Flowering was delayed by two to three weeks with > 400 mg L1 BA, however the plants were more compact, and the total number of flower stalks produced increased by 350 %. Total growing time to achieve maximum increased flower stalk number was an additional 21 days and growers will have to determine if the trade-off of flower delay is worth having more compact plants with 350 % more flowers. In a second experiment, BA was applied 13 DAP as a foliar spray at 0, 125, 250 and 500 mg L-1 to Salvia 'Ultra Violet', Salvia Marcus?, and Salvia 'May Night'. Plant height, number of flowering shoots, and flowering dates were recorded. Growth control effect was not observed with BA on 'Ultra Violet' plants, and control effect was limited and inconsistent for both 'May Night' and Marcus?. Thus, cultivar response to BA varies, and individual trials will have to be conducted to determine BA suitability as a growth enhancer.