HortTechnology 9:224-226. 1999.

Dose and timing of brushing to control excessive hypocotyl elongation in cucumber transplants

Thomas Björkman

Department of Horticultural Sciences, New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Cornell University, Geneva, NY 14456

ABSTRACT   Brushing is an effective method to control hypocotyl elongation in cucumbers (Cucumis sativus L. 'Turbo') grown in plug trays for transplanting. The amount of daily brushing and the number of days to brush for best performance was determined. Treatment with 10 strokes per day for the four days of maximal hypocotyl elongation was sufficient to reduce final hypocotyl length by 25%. More brushing did not meaningfully reduce elongation further. Inhibition of dry weight gain, which is detrimental, was minor (<10%) compared with the height control achieved. Despite seasonal differences in absolute elongation, the effects of brushing were the same.

 Brush 10 times a day.

When treated for four days, 10 strokes was enough. More did not help. The results were the same in early spring and late spring (the two lines).

Brush for the four days of rapid growth.

The hypocotyls grow for about four days after the cotyledons unfold. Brush on those four days. Brushing after the hypocotyls are full length does not help.


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