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Research in greenhouse production in Finland - theory and practice


Research in greenhouse production in Finland ... Year aroud tomato production - Top lighting, 160 W/m2, 400W HPS bulps, ~ 420 cm high, ~ 280 cm between. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Research in greenhouse production in Finland - theory and practice

Research in greenhouse production in Finland -
theory and practice
  • Mona-Anitta Riihimäki
  • Martens Trädgårdsstiftelse
  • Foundation for Greenhouse Production research
    and education

Research in greenhouse production in Finland
  • Greenhouse production in Finland
  • Research facilities financing
  • Ongoing research
  • Research and growers?
  • Project Martens Center of Knowledge in
    Greenhouse Growing
  • Future in greenhouse research in Finland

Greenhouse production in Finland (ha)
Total area 475 ha.
(Puutarharekisteri 2005)
70 of tomatoes and 40 of cucumbers in Finland
are grown in Southern Ostrobothnia
Martens Trädgårdsstiftelse, Övermark, Närpes
Research institutes
  • Universities
  • University of Helsinki, Faculty of Agriculture
    and Forestry
  • MTT Agrifood Research Finland
  • Horticulture, greenhouse growing
  • Finnish Glasshouse Growers' Association
  • Martens Trädgårdsstiftelse

  • Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
  • Academy of Finland
  • TEKES Finnish funding agency for technology and
  • EU
  • Foundations dedicated to research of agriculture
  • Organization for Greenhouse Growers

Current research in Finland
  • Questions
  • Growing methods
  • year around production
  • substrates
  • Techniques
  • artificial lighting
  • alternative energy solutions
  • closed greenhouse systems
  • Integrated pest management
  • Objects
  • Vegetables
  • cucumber, tomato, sweet pepper
  • Cut flowers
  • roses
  • Pot plants
  • Important as a group in the study of IPM

Research Growers ?
  • Lack of communication exists.
  • Results from basic research and the newest
    technical innovations are commonly difficult to
    be directly applied by the greenhouse growers
    and/or the investments needed and economical
    risks are too high.

(No Transcript)
Martens center of knowledge in greenhouse
- Year aroud tomato production -
  • The County of Southern Ostrobothnia
  • - Österbottens förbund (EU)
  • The City of Närpes
  • Martens Trädgårdsstiftelse
  • The Cultural Foundation for Swedish speaking
    minority in Finland
  • - Svenska Kulturfonden

Project - Growers ?
  • The planning of an experiment to Martens began
    with a meeting with tomato growers and greenhouse
    growing advisors from the area.
  • Discussions
  • Wishes
  • Ideas
  • The best possible use of the research resources
  • Regular meetings with growers 2-3 times / year,
    with greenhouse advisors once a month.

Research at Martens
  • Plan for 2005-2007
  • Interlights
  • Interplanting
  • Grafted plants
  • New varieties
  • New growth substrates

  • Interlights were installed into the whole
    research greenhouse at Martens Foundation
  • based on the research result by
  • MTT, where researchers observed 16 increase in
    the yield in tomato with interlights top lights
    compared with only top lights (Näkkilä J
    Muranen M 2006).
  • Glasshouse Growers Association, where the
    installation of interlights was studied (Murmann

Interlight installation
Total installed capasity 240 W/m2
Research greenhouse
  • Research greenhouse Norrås 2000 m2.
  • Planting in August 2005 4680 stems gt 2,6 stems
    / m2
  • Interplanting 648 / experiment gt 1944 stems
  • Grafted 520 / variety gt 1040 stems
  • The schedule for interplanting
  • 3 plantings per year August - December - April
  • 2 plantings per year August - February

Tomato varieties in Norrås
  • As main variety we use Encore, which is the
    most common variety used by growers at the area
    (with artificial lights).
  • Grafted varieties Axxion and Espero to

  • The yield stayed high and stable also through the
    darkest moths of the year.
  • The fruit size was good through the winter
    months. Mean size in Encore did not drop below

  • Results from the first year showed that highest
    yield was obtained from the control plots.
  • However, we were forced to empty the greenhouse
    because of aggressive white fly invasion to
    assure good start for the second year of
  • The termination of the experiment was done just
    at the time when the young plants from
    interplanting in April were beginning to give
  • In October 2007 careful calculations of economics
    of the studied growing techniques will be
    presented together with final results from two
    year experiment.

Total yields from the experiments after 44 weeks
of growth. The grafted varieties (Espero and
Axxion) were planted two weeks after Encore
Topping and de-leafing experiment
  • Topping in relation to interplanting with 2 and 1
    week intervals.
  • We did quite radical experiment by de-leafing the
    old plants down to 6 or 4 in three weeks around
    planting. The fruit quality was observed along
    with yield observations.

The effect of the timing of topping
The best yield was observed from the experiment
where the old plants were topped one week after
the interplanting.
  • A common method of de-leafing is to have 13
    leaves on a tomato plant after topping.
  • We decreased the number of leaves down to 6 or 4,
    when interplanting was done.
  • Yield, outer and inner fruit quality were
    observed during the experiment.
  • Radical de-leafing to 3-4 leaves did no harm to
    the yield compared with traditional plants with
    13 leaves. BUT less leaves gave far better
    growth conditions for the young, interplanted

Grafted plants
  • Strong, vegetative, have hold good and stable
    yield through the winter months.
  • BUT probably due to high light intensity and
    climate optimazed for non-grafted Encore, the
    fruit size in Axxion has been too high (105 g).
    Espero had smaller fruits (91 g) and better
    quality. (Fruit size in control Encore 91 g).

Growers opinions?
  • Regular meetings with the tomato growers and
    continuous, basically daily, communication with
    the growers has been very fruitful for the both
  • Growers have been adapting methods experimented
    during the project. For example the use of
    interlights and de-leafing during planting.
  • A general opinion has been that the gap between
    growers and research has become smaller when the
    project has brought the research to the middle of
    practical greenhouse growing.

  • Energy!
  • Alternative fuels
  • Energy saving solutions
  • Closed / semi closed greenhouses
  • New, more energy effective lighting solutions
  • Integrated pest management

  • MTT, Agrifood Research Finland, horticulture
    section, most likely continues to have good
    resources for basic research in greenhouse
    growing. Their research is directly supported by
    the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.
  • The applied research at Martens foundation is
    dependent on project money from local
    authorities, foundation itself and possibly from
    organization of greenhouse growers. The future of
    The Center of Knowledge in the Greenhouse Growing
    is open after the end of 2007.