DRAMMwater treatment and filtration system:

Gromax sees yield increases and grade improvement from clean water, increased dissolved oxygen

"Knowing the dissolved oxygen level in your irrigation water is an integral part of growing healthy plants" says Dave Hagopian of Gromax Greenhouses in Fenwick, Ontario, Canada. “Bio film in irrigation pipelines hosts many pathogens and causes endless disease issues, so eliminating biofilm is also an integral part of growing healthy plants. Ozone treatment is the best possible way we’ve found to simultaneously eliminate biofilm in the tanks and pipes, and to maintain high levels of dissolved oxygen. Constant monitoring helps determine the health of our water delivery pipeline; and the ozone treatment allows us to maintain dissolved oxygen levels far higher than otherwise possible in the irrigation water and that results in really great yields!" says Hagopian.

Gromax Greenhouses installed a DRAMMwater treatment and filtration system for their 6 acre English cucumber production facility one year ago. The Dramm water treatment system at Gromax starts with an engineered aeration process installed in the ponds that supply Gromax with all of their fresh water. "It is important to eliminate anaerobic muck in the ponds that cause ponds to become eutrophic, or dead, as this has direct impact on water quality coming into the greenhouse system." says Charlie Hayes bio engineer for Dramm/Water. Improving water quality consistency at the source adds treatment capacity to any engineered water treatment system, and generally reduces overall costs.

The Dramm water treatment system uses a series of deep media filters before water enters the ozone oxidation process. Ozone, the most powerful oxidizer, is diluted in a proprietary pressurized contact tank before it enters a second post-treatment depth media post filtration process. From the post-treatment filters, the water is delivered into storage tanks before distribution to the crop. Once the storage tanks are full, the overflow recirculates back, repeating the complete filtering process and ozone treatment cycle all over again. This continuous treatment loop is beneficial for keeping all pathogens from incubating in any water storage tanks and filters at Gromax and also continuously boosts the dissolved oxygen to very high levels. The same process is used to treat all leachate drain water. Leacheate return is collected in a storage tank, treated, delivered to a treated leachate storage tank, and again the treatment loop continues once the leached treated storage tank is full. Recent multi-scan DNA testing shows all pathogens are eliminated before water is blended and delivered to the cucumber crop.

The most exciting news with Dramm water treatment system is the elevated levels of dissolved oxygen in the water. Dissolved oxygen is a result of natural reversion from ozone. The elevated levels of oxygen help to oxidize the biofilm in the water delivery pipeline and drip systems that delivery the water to the crop and carry high levels of dissolved oxygen all the way to the root system in the bags.

"The results on the cucumber crop are amazing!" says Dave Hagopian of Gromax. The elevated dissolved oxygen levels in my system ranges from 22ppm to 37ppm, depending on water temperature and time of year. Clean water, clean pipelines, and high DO levels are what we are looking for at Gromax.” says Dave. The DRAMMwater system certainly delivers what we need for our farm. It is really two systems built into one continuous process.
1. Ozone to disinfect incoming fresh and leachate return water and
2. Dissolved oxygen for clean pipelines and absorption into the plants root zone.

Beneficial organisms such as Trichoderma strains enjoy the high oxygen environment too. "No danger of beneficials being destroyed by chemical fungicide applications” says Colin Ashbee of BioWorks. "The results have been amazing for our farm as we increased production and most important improved fruit grade which is money in the bank!” says Hagopian.

Dramm Corporation provides custom designed water treatment options and has been delivering water treatment and dissolved oxygen application products for over 70 years.

For more information
Kurt Becker

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