Time to Prepare for Spring 2022

This post was jointly written by Dr. Chevonne Dayboll and Dr. Sarah Jandricic

It’s time to think about spring again! This post gathers some of the most important things to plan and prep for in the greenhouse before your spring production begins in earnest.

1. Make sure your inputs are ordered

We can’t emphasize this one enough. COVID-19 and container boat issues are still causing shipping delays that are affecting many industries including greenhouses. Make sure you order potting mixes, plastic trays and pots, fertilizers, and production inputs well ahead of when you will need them. If you are planning on doing greenhouse upgrades in between seasons make sure you confirm delivery and installation timelines with your contractors.  Many of them are facing delays too!

2. Now is the time for preventative maintenance

Heat loss from an older (left) and newer, more efficient boiler (right). (Photo credit: OMAFRA)

Now is a great time to schedule preventive maintenance for your boiler, irrigation and shading systems.  Make sure that all motors and alarms are working before you need to rely on them. No one wants to find out that their temperature alarm failed on a cold February morning! Ensure you are getting the pressure you expect all along your irrigation system.  If you rely on propane heaters for early spring production make sure they are venting properly. Damage from improper venting can present as stunted growth or leaf burn.

Take some time to inspect the greenhouse for wear-and-tear. Repair cracked poly and broken glass to keep heat from escaping. Make sure old torn energy curtains are replaced. A heat sensitive camera can help to identify areas of energy loss and help you plan for energy efficient upgrades in the future.

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Controlled Environment Technology Webinar, Part 2: Managing Greenhouse Environments Under Blackout Curtains – March 12

The OMAFRA Greenhouse Vegetable Specialist is continuing an exciting webinar series on technology in controlled environments!

This series is relevant to anyone producing in controlled environments – from vegetables, to herbs, cannabis and flowers. The second webinar tackles the use of black out curtains for light abatement in these systems, and how their use can impact plant production. Industry experts from AAFC, Hoogendoorn, Ludvig Svensson, Van der Ende Group and 360 Energy are all participating. so don’t miss the opportunity to hear from so many experts at once! This webinar covers each company’s approach to addressing challenges of production under curtain cover, and involves a panel-style discussion about integrating these systems.

Details on this installment of this webinar series can be found below.

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Upcoming Workshop: Greenhouse Energy Savings

Interested in learning the latest opportunities for energy savings in your floriculture greenhouse? Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers (OGVG), the County of Essex, and Essex Region Conservation are hosting a workshop on January 26th to discuss energy savings in the greenhouse sector, with speakers from CI Energy Conservation, IESO, The University of Windsor, as well as ERCA and OGVG.

Read on for registration info, tentative agenda and an invitation from the organizers:

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Looking to Save on Energy Over the Long Term? This Grant Can Help.

Are you a small to medium sized greenhouse (<500 employees) looking to improve your energy efficiency and bring down energy costs? Then this funding program from Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) might be for you.

Apply now, as funds are available on a first-come, first-serve basis!

Continue reading “Looking to Save on Energy Over the Long Term? This Grant Can Help.”