Creating more green for greenhouse growers
Creating optimal growing conditions in greenhouses can greatly impact production and make year-round growing possible. Twenty-four researchers from land-grant institutions are working together to develop practices and tools to help growers efficiently manage controlled-environment facilities. Growers who adopt these recommendations have seen savings of 5% to 30%, and average-sized businesses have saved $20,000 annually in operating and maintenance costs.
Among the developments:
- Guidelines for reducing fertilizer leaching by fivefold
- Demonstrated ability to use high-sodium water to grow plants, requiring less fresh water use
- More efficient lighting, energy-saving greenhouse designs and tools to monitor energy use
- Prototype development for lunar greenhouses and designs for research facilities in Antarctica