Master's Theses (1970 - 2004) - The Longwood Graduate Program in Public Horticulture

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Master’s theses in the Longwood Graduate Program submitted between 2005 and 2009 are available online through Dissertations & Theses @ University of Delaware. Check DELCAT to locate print or microform copies of master's theses that are not available online.

More information is available at Dissertations & Theses.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 90
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    Productivity Improvement Programs in Public Horticultural Institutions
    (University of Delaware, 1986-06) Townsend, Joseph
    With few exceptions botanic gardens and arboreta are nonprofit organizations. They rely on endowments, private giving, entrance receipts., grants, and tax revenues for their operating budgets. Recent economic conditions have threatened this base of support. Public horticultural institutions are often faced with the choice of reducing services; or improving productivity to make ends meet. Productivity improvement is by far the more attractive alternative. Some gardens have taken this course. Their record for success is dismal. This thesis supports the premise that botanic gardens and arboreta have a poor record on productivity improvement because they do not have an accurate model of how their organizations function and they do not have a clear concept of the "ins and outs" of productivity. Chapter I develops the historical background of contemporary thought on how organizations function and what makes some productive. Chapter II develops an organizational model to describe botanic gardens and arboreta. Chapter III describes productivity improvement programs in four institutions. Chapter IV analyzes the four case studies using the model described in Chapter III. Finally, Chapter V points out a new direction for productivity improvement in public horticultural institutions. Botanic gardens and arboreta are not to be blamed for their poor record of productivity improvement. Most nonprofits have difficulty applying programs and models developed for profit-making organizations to the nonprofit realm. This study attempts to bridge the gap between modern organizational research and the little known field of botanic garden management.
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    Influence of Temperature on Growth and Flowering of Four Meconopsis Genotypes
    (University of Delaware, 2002) Still, Shannon
    Meconopsis betonicifolia Franch. And M. grandis Prain are members of the Papaveraceae L. native to the Himalayan mountains. These species and the hybrids derived from them are especially prized as ornamentals for their intense blue flowers and gardenesque habit. Longwood Gardens, a horticultural display garden in eastern Pennsylvania, USA, has identified these plants as having good conservatory display qualities. However, empirical observations indicate these species are intolerant of the hot summers that occur in this geographic reason. The experiments performed in this study were designed to identify how temperature would affect plant characteristics critical to display for blue flowered Meconopsis as well as the red flowering M. punicea Maxim. Meconopsis betonicifolia, M. 'Lingholm' , a variety from the M. George Sherriff Group, and M. punicea plants were forced in the greenhouse at minimum night/day temperatures of 7.2°C /10°C, 12.8°C /15.6°C, and 18.3°C /12.1°C between December 2000 and May 2001. All plants grown in the 7.2°C /10°C and 12.8°C /15.6°C temperatures had larger canopy widths when starting to flower than those plants in 18.3°C /21.1°C environment. Plants grown in the two cooler temperature ranges also had taller flower stems, at 64.27cm and 54.44cm, for the coolest and medium environment, respectively, compared to the warmest environment at 46.27cm. The stem diameter was greatest on plants in the warmest environment at .691cm compared to the intermediate and warm temperatures at .526cm and .438cm for the medium and warmest environment, respectively. Plant dry weight was also inversely related to temperature. Plants grown at 7.2°C /10°C, at 41.8g, were 33% heavier than those grown at 12.8°C /15.6°C, at 31.4g, and 100% heavier than the plants in the 18.3°C /21.1°C, at 20.6g, at harvesting. This study demonstrated forcing temperature regulated net photosynthesis and dry weight gain of Meconopsis species and hybrids. It also showed that display quality plants with tall, strong flower stems and good foliage could be grown when temperatures were monitored and maintained at 7.2°C /10°C or 12.8°C /15.6°C and proper genotypes were selected.
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    An Evaluative Study of the Delaware Master Gardener Volunteer Program
    (University of Delaware, 2001) Simmer, Laurie Smith
    The concept of a Master Gardener Program originated in Washington State in 1972; today Cooperative Extension supports sister programs in nearly every state. Since the inception of Delaware's Master Gardener Program in the spring of 1986, it has not been evaluated. Master Gardener Programs exist in each of the three counties of Delaware. One of the program's aims is to help fellow Delawareans obtain practical and valuable gardening information through Delaware Cooperative Extension. The primary purpose of this research was to identify the beneficiaries of Delaware's Master Gardener Program and the extent to which the provided information was useful, accurate, and timely. The primary source of information collected for this research endeavor was compiled from the data gathered by the distribution of survey instruments to two specific populations of Delaware Gardeners. Delaware's Gardening Public completed self-administered surveys at Delaware garden centers and nurseries, which allowed the researcher to gather their input. A second population, known users of programs and services provided by trained Delaware Master Gardener Volunteers, completed survey instruments sent to their residences. The combination of responses yielded demographic information as well as data regarding gardeners' use of specific sources of information and gardening characteristics useful to complete this program evaluation. Gathered data are intended to strengthen programming and extend outreach through the Delaware Master Gardener Volunteer Program to Delaware's Gardening Public.
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    An Approach to Teaching Children about the Aesthetics of Plants and Gardens
    (University of Delaware, 1976-06) Scheid, David
    The point of this thesis is to draw together some ideas which may serve as guidelines for those who are interested in a program for the education of children in gardens. An education program should not consist only of the courses of plant study and practical gardening, but also the encouragement of sensitivity to beauty, or aesthetics. Any program must consider not only the qualifications of the teacher to teach aesthetics and the ability of the student to understand aesthetics, but the methods used to present the material. The teacher's role is one of training and guiding the child's interest in the proper direction. The teacher needs to inform himself by knowing how children learn, the pupil's age and maturation level, their motivation, their known and perceived needs, the physical conditions and time factor, and the child's interest. The teacher must be conversant in the topic and utilize the child's interest as a point of beginning, not as the exclusive direction. The student's role should be an active one. In teaching aesthetics the interest of the child can be maintained if the instructor moves quickly into the various phases of each topic, touching only on the most important points and allowing the pupils to build on them. In order to learn aesthetics it is necessary for the child to understand the elements of color, texture, and form and their interrelationships. This involves the handling of more than one variable, the forming of hypotheses and the evolution of logical conclusions. In the intellectual development of a child this ability generally becomes evident in the eleven to fifteen year age group. Therefore aesthetics of plants and gardens are best taught to children in grades four to six. When teaching aesthetics of plants and gardens, it is important for the student to understand the concepts of diversity, interrelationships, adaptation and change. These concepts can be further interpreted through the study of the aesthetic elements of color, texture, and form. When teaching these elements, the instructor is encouraged to use the methods and materials the teacher feels confident with and teaching in an interesting and informative manner, it is hoped that both the teacher and the pupil will realize that beauty is in the study, the acquiring of perception, the self satisfaction, the creating process.
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    Operations Manual for Plant Record Tracking/Mapping System
    (University of Delaware, 1988-05) Murbach, David