C6 Acclimatization in nursery of the new Calendula maritima plants

Before being definitively transferred to the wild, the plants of the target species produced with the C.1 action should undergo to an acclimatization period with the aim to promote the development of a well-structured root system, adapted to grow on a natural substrate, different from those normally used during in vitro propagation and production phases. This cultivation phase in the nursery will last at least 5-6 months and will be carried out during autumn and winter in order to guarantee the obtention of suitable plants for transplanting in the wild between the end of February and the end of March. Since the target species is restricted to coastal environments, it is necessary to reduce as much as possible the period between the acclimatization phase and the transplantation in the wild: it must be immediately after the winter season (risk of swell), but at least 2-3 months before summer, in order to allow the survival of the new plants to the summer drought. Acclimatization must take place in controlled conditions, in a nursery specialized in the production of typical wild plants of the Mediterranean environments. The structure will have to guarantee the gradual adaptation of the plants to the natural substrate and to the conditions of brightness that the plants will meet in the natural habitat. The seedlings will be grown in pots suitable for direct planting, thus minimizing the transplantation stress. Moreover, they must be provided with lateral drainage holes to avoid rooting growth to the ground.

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