Organic Transplant Media and Tomato Performance – 2007
Betsy Leonard and Anu Rangarajan Dept. of Horticulture, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853
Abstract: Successful transplant production begins with good growing media. Healthy vigorous transplants will be less susceptible to insects, diseases and transplant shock leading to better crop performance. Formulating organic potting mixes is especially challenging. Organic sources of nitrogen such as compost can be inconsistent. Compost can change over time with storage and release nutrients unpredictably. Many organic potting mixes are supplemented with organic nitrogen sources such as alfalfa meal, soybean meal and blood meal. Another alternative N source is vermicompost, which often has more nitrate than the compost starting material. We compared dairy based thermogenic, dairy based vermicompost and hog based vermicompost along with plant based nitrogen sources for their impacts on tomato transplant growth.