China: Hi-tech tomatoes pump up production

As temperatures begin to rise across China, farming is underway on the Jianghan plain in Hubei province.

Unlike traditional farming, greenhouses in Sanhe town, Yingcheng city, are being run by smart technology. Its drip irrigation systems, weather stations, and sunshade nets work automatically to optimize conditions for growing vegetables.

In a bid to improve local agricultural development, Yingcheng has invested in the creation of a modern agricultural park covering some 13.33 hectares in Sanhe, which combines research, production, and agri-tourism.

Greenhouses, each of which is 0.23 hectares in size, contain thousands of newly planted cherry tomato seedlings growing vigorously in soilless substrate.

"The substrate is soft and loose. It is made from crushed coconut shells," said Liu Quan, technical director of the park, adding that coconut chaff is permeable to air and is helpful to rooting seedlings.


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