Buysman Kruiden, established in Andijk, North Holland, is a true family company who until about 20 years ago farmed vegetables in outside fields. Bit by bit the company evolved towards cultivating herbs in modern greenhouses. Today the operations range contains Basil, Chives, Dill and Coriander, all of which are farmed in a completely sustainable and organic environment. Buysman's products can be found on the shelves of more upscale, specialized fruit and vegetable shops in the Netherlands.
Last year the Buysman farm underwent an expansion, adding a new greenhouse specifically for growing Basil. At the time a shade cloth made of plastic strips that were dyed grey was installed in the greenhouse. According to the manufacturer, the selected shade cloth blocked 55% of the light. However, in the summer it became apparent that the cloth let in far too much sunlight. In order to prevent the basil leaves from burning it was decided to whitewash the greenhouse roof. In efforts to avoid having to continue whitewashing the roof annually, in spite of having the shade cloth in place, the decision was made to remove and discard the one year old shade cloth. To replace the failed shade cloth HARMONY 5220 O FR was installed. Made of highly diffuse white strips, the Harmony shade screen not only provides Buysman with the shade required for their basil crop, it also provides high quality diffuse light, making it an all-around more effective shade solution.
When interviewed, owner Lowie Buysman could hardly hide his pride for his company and their newly acquired HARMONY shade screen. In the gentle climate under HARMONY Buysman can grow a superior quality Basil. When asked about his summer experience with Harmony, Lowie Buijsman, the man with “green fingers” who’s jointly responsible for cultivation at the herb company, noted “The light that gets through is softer, which gives me a better feeling. There is no risk of scorching the crop and it’s no longer necessary to whitewash.”
FASTER GROWING BASIL
In mid-summer it takes four weeks before the Basil crop is ready for harvesting. This summer the Basil was fully developed one to two days sooner thanks to the diffused light from HARMONY in combination with a temperature control strategy.
Even on the brightest of days when sunlight was at a maximum, the Basil required less water in comparison to last year; the reason being the softer climate under HARMONY.