Before taking over his father’s cucumber business six years ago, Kristof van Dorpe worked as a crop advisor on the Belgium vegetable market. Two years ago he purchased a 20,000 m2 nursery in Bavikhove and now he grows peppers and cucumbers at two further sites. Kristof is a real people manager, and takes a hands-on approach – together with his team – in the day to day management of the three businesses.
A year ago, LUXOUS 1347 H2NO FR was installed at one of Kristof’s greenhouses while the regular LUXOUS 1243 D was installed in an adjacent unit. Both greenhouses are of the same type and are separated by a wall allowing a true climate comparison.
For his mature cucumber crop, Kristof strives for a climate with not too high humidity. It helps here that cucumbers grow on rockwool, placed on a concrete floor (the previous owner grew pot plants with an ebb and flow system). Obviously, energy saving is an important factor as well. During summer, he wants to avoid intense sunlight to prevent burning of the crop. LUXOUS 1243 D plays an important role in helping Kristof achieve these goals. The screen opens in the morning at a radiation level of 100 W/m2. The high light transmission of his energy screen also helps him to save energy after sunrise.
In the summer he uses the screen when the radiation exceeds 600 W/m2. And to avoid an increase in greenhouse temperature, Kristof keeps a screen gap of about 75 cm.
Less humidity under the H2no screen
Filled with enthusiasm, Kristof takes a pipe rail trolley to inspect the screen up-close. "Feel the H2no screen, it feels so dry". It is also clearly visible that there are fewer condensation droplets under the H2no screen compared to the regular screen. "According to my senses, H2no transmits more light," says the grower. In addition, the relative humidity is lower and the climate feels better. And he can back up his feelings with data from his climate computer where he compares relative humidity for both greenhouses. "I have postponed immediate expansion plans, but when the time comes, I will definitely choose LUXOUS 1347 H2NO FR".