For larger operations, automation can significantly improve efficiency and reduce the cost of labor—which is the biggest production concern. Thanks to innovations, from software and sensors to robotics, water and lighting, greenhouse gardening can be more efficient and effective.
These technological advances in gardening tend to have their roots in Europe before they make their way to North America. Based on what was featured in one of the latest greenhouse technology showcases this year, this is what U.S. growers have to look forward to.
Pointed Microclimate Sensor: Wireless sensor that captures dew point, vapor pressure deficit, temperature and humidity to help monitor heating needs. This tool helps growers cut unnecessary energy costs and reduces the risk of plant disease.
Service Engine (Royal Brinkman): Software that helps managers identify everything in the greenhouse that requires service or maintenance and keeps those tasks on schedule. Streamlines management of greenhouse upkeep and provides up-to-date and easily accessible maintenance records.
Moisture Balance Module (Priva): Automated module that constantly monitors water evaporation and plant water usage, then schedules irrigation and duration that automatically adjusts based on the environment and plant needs. Encourages not minimal, but optimal amounts of water usage.
SmartPAR Wireless Control System (Lumigrow): Wireless platform that can be used to automate lighting zones and adjust LED lighting remotely. Adjustments can be tailored to crop types and growth stages. Lighting modes can be changed between grow and view modes.
IRIS! Scout Robot (Metazet FormFlex): Robotic system detects crop stress, so pest, diseases or other deficiencies can be treated early on. This robot is is also equipped to measure humidity, temperature and carbon dioxide levels to assist growers in managing an ideal environment in their greenhouse.
Wondering how to innovate your greenhouse? Let us help! Call our friendly staff at 1-800-531-4769 or visit www.GothicArchGreenhouses.com to learn more.