COLUMBUS, Ohio - Growth control of plants, crop timing, crop improvement, seed banks, composting and growing plants in soil-less media are just some of the floriculture research projects being conducted at Ohio State University. Many of them will be visible for the public at BioHio 2001.
The research projects are just a small part of a larger tour to educate the public on the importance of the floriculture industry in Ohio. Horticulture researchers will provide greenhouse tours, explain teaching activities at the university, and provide floriculture statistics on a state and national level, said Claudio Pasian, an OSU horticulturist.
BioHio will be held on the Columbus campus of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 10-12. The three-day event will feature hands-on demonstrations, exhibits and tours covering agriculture, the environment, gardening, managing wildlife, fish farming, native plants, plant diseases and more.
Floriculture is the art and science of growing non-woody plants for ornamental purposes. According to the latest statistics, Ohio ranks fifth in the nation, with a wholesale value of $168 million. California ranks first, with a value of $796 million. Florida, Texas and Michigan are also in the top five. "Floriculture is a vibrant, active industry that has been growing steadily during the last 10-15 years," said Pasian. "It's an important job sector for Ohio because it provides products to customers in state as well as out of state."
Pasian said the purpose of the floriculture tours at BioHio is to generate awareness among the public of the economic importance of the industry, as well as instill an appreciation for the quality of life flowering plants can generate. "Floriculture has a unique characteristic in that plants are grown, not for food or fiber, but for an aesthetic satisfaction," he said. "People like living in a nice place, both public and private, and flowering plants can provide that basic ecological need."
Most of the plants grown in the floriculture industry are bedding plants, such as petunias, begonias and geraniums. Visitors participating in the floriculture tour will have the opportunity to take home potted marigolds to transplant in their own gardens. The art of container gardening, growing ornamentals in decorative containers, will also be highlighted at BioHio.
BioHio is sponsored by the college's components - OSU Extension, the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, OSU Agricultural Technical Institute, and Academic Affairs. Admission and parking are free.
Parking for BioHio will be north of the Schottenstein Center off of Fred Taylor Drive in the Schott Special Events Parking Lot. Access to the lot will be from Ackerman Road via state route 315. Signs will be posted on state route 315, Ackerman Road and Lane Avenue to direct visitors to event parking. Buses will shuttle visitors to the event from the parking area.
For more information about BioHio 2001, call (614) 292-3897 or visit the BioHio 2001 Web site at http://biohio.osu.edu.