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Winter 2016 Depth of Field

Illuminating research

The potato greenhouse at OSU’s Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center glows purple where Sagar Sathuvalli is testing the effects of visible light on potato plants. He’s found that red lights promote flowering (which helps with cross-pollination) and blue lights promote foliage production (which spurs plant growth). Now, under the kaleidoscope of LED lights in the greenhouse, he’s testing the mix of red and blue light to see if it can promote seedling tuber production. We wonder, could this be where purple potatoes come from?

LED lights in the greenhouse
Lynn Ketchum