diffuse glass and shading:

Anthuriums marketable in 16 weeks thanks to more light

Letting in more natural light has much potential for greenhouse growing and saving energy. At least according to a running project, “Grip on Light”. The Dutch project is researching the benefits of diffuse natural light and strives for an energy reduction of 50%.

The venture, adhering to ‘The New Cultivation’ principles, is currently testing three different methods to achieve said goals: diffuse glass, diffuse shading screen and daylight. Just how much light can be allowed in to the nursery without causing damage isn’t clear yet. Plant monitoring is developed to avoid crop damage. Good monitoring can prevent crops from receiving too much light.

So far however, results have been promising; in some cases even spectacular. In the first year bromeliad and anthurium are investigated. The first cultivation of bromeliads (Vriesea and Guzmania rana) and two anthurium cultivars showed dramatic improvements. Anthuriums were marketable in 16 weeks, as opposed to the usual 22. Not only that, they were actually 25% heavier. And that with 25% less light. No crop damage was reported. The bromeliads too yielded promising result, showing increased growth.

The development of plant monitoring also went well. Assumptions made ​​beforehand about the improvements of monitoring have been tested for a wide range of temperatures and light intensities and appear well maintained. This allows the measuring of the amount of light damage that occurs during the day. With a simple adjustment of the Plantivity meter it is no longer necessary to measure several plants, just one suffices.

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