Maintaining your commercial greenhouse can mean more than sealing doors, greasing hinges, and fixing tears or cracks in coverings. For commercial greenhouses, proper maintenance also means making necessary upgrades to keep your operation efficient and your workforce effective. Not only can this result in healthier plants, but also better profit margins.
Commercial greenhouse technology changes quickly. For that reason, consider that a greenhouse has about 10-15 years of useful life in it in terms of its systems, such as heating, cooling, etc. The structure itself may last a lot longer, but planning to upgrade the working parts of your greenhouse operation is necessary to stay competitive.
Planning ahead for greenhouse upgrades can help manage overall costs and keep your greenhouse running at maximum efficiency. Keeping a running inventory of your supplies and equipment will help streamline your upgrade process.
Commercial Greenhouse Upgrades
Below, you will find several types of supplies and equipment that can be upgraded within your commercial greenhouse, often at a low cost. Upgrading your equipment now will save you money in the long run.
Benches are great for creating more growing space and keeping your greenhouse organized. If you have stationary benches, making the switch to movable or rolling benches can help you increase your production area by up to 25 percent. Using benches as shelving for your plants allows you to group them in a way that makes them easier to find and sort.
Glazing, or greenhouse coverings, are becoming more effective at helping to maintain greenhouse temperatures. Manage heating costs by reviewing your glazing. It’s likely you regularly reglaze, but be especially mindful of acrylic and glass, which dulls easily. A greenhouse grade glaze that diffuses light, coupled with an infrared layer that adds energy efficiency is ideal.
High efficiency heaters help reduce how much energy your heating system uses. Growers can also use horizontal air flow fans to help move warm air throughout the greenhouse. There are many natural gas and propane options to choose from. Other natural fuel sources can be used to boost efficiency even more.
Making the move to natural ventilation will have a significant impact on your energy costs as well. Roll-up side walls, large roof vents and open roof designs make this a widely available option. Switching to energy efficient fans is an easy way to save money.
Controls allow you to manage the temperature and other environmental factors in your greenhouse. Some of the latest technology now combines heating and cooling in one device. By streamlining the monitoring, this helps the systems work more efficiently, that the environment maintains consistent temperatures.
Upgrading your irrigation systems can be a great way to lower costs. Keeping your irrigation system on a timer so that it comes on at certain intervals helps manage water usage. There are also ebb and flood products available that help recycle water to use over and over again.
Automation is one of the newest greenhouse trends. Using automated systems can greatly cut down on your labor costs over time. Many automated options are available, including rotating basket systems, container filling, potting and labeling, etc. Also consider conveyors and carts to move plants, as they offer the most inexpensive option.
Have questions about a particular system or upgrade cost? We’re greenhouse experts! Call us at 1-800-531-4769 or visit www.GothicArchGreenhouses.com.