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Anthura would like to create spring in its greenhouses all year round: the ideal conditions with the ideal light level. With Svensson's PARperfect screen solution, the anthurium and orchid specialist can achieve the desired light quantity and diffusivity at crop level, regardless of the season. The result: a higher quality plant while saving energy.

“Light level and uniformity are essential ingredients to realizing an optimal climate in the greenhouse”, says Patrick Romeijn, Manager of Production of Anthura. For years, Anthura has been working climate screens to manage light control; in summer to screen out light and in winter to save energy. Additionally, the distribution company wants to comply with current and future requirements for light emissions. Since spring of 2021, Anthura has been applying the PARperfect solution in its 2-hectare breeding greenhouse for phalaenopsis in Bleiswijk, Netherlands. Although the screens have been installed in the greenhouse for less than a year, the results have been positve. "We see a higher growth rate and better crop quality," says Head of Cultivation, Peter Vogel. Anthura has more than ten years of experience with using multiple climate screens in the greenhouse. Diaphragm screens were deliberately chosen when we built the location at the Cyclamenweg in Bleiswijk in 2009. "With these screens, by sliding two cloths on top of each other, we could increase or decrease the screen percentage quickly and gradually," explains Patrick Romeijn. "When we needed to replace the aperture screen in 2018, we started investigating the new possibilities from Svensson's range of screen cloths. In doing so, our desire for light diffusion, light emission, and energy savings still stood."

No light and shadow paths

“In consultation with Svensson and greenhouse installer Huisman Scherming, we chose a screen solution with three screen installations: the Obscura 9950 FR W (upper screen), the Harmony 5747 FR (middle screen), and the Luxous 1547 D FR (lower screen). The intermediate Harmony provides a good light spread due to its diffusion properties, giving us an evenness of light across the crop”, says Peter Vogel. "Even if we have to close the overhead Obscura screen with a lower percentage of sometimes 25% to screen out excess sunlight, this does not lead to light or shadow paths at the crop level. This allows cultivation at a higher average light level, leading to good growth and quality, with less risk of light stress."

The experiences with this concept were so positive that a three-screen solution was chosen again when renovating the phalaenopsis breeding greenhouse. In the meantime, Svensson introduced PARperfect to the market, allowing the greenhouse screen level to be gradually controlled from 20% to 100%. Anthura chose the screens Obscura 9950 FR (top), Harmony 2047 FR (middle), and Luxous 1147 FR (bottom). The Harmony PARperfect climate screen is a screen that gives a high degree of diffusivity, but has a lower screen percentage, says Svensson consultant Bart Bakker. "In PARperfect, the position of the screens is continuously adjusted based on the intensity of solar radiation. The light level at crop level is kept constant, regardless of the season or time of day."

 

Energy savings without light loss

Thanks to the high diffusivity of the PARperfect climate screen, light distribution at the crop level is optimal, Patrick Romeijn believes. "The grower's biggest problem is light and shade strips in the greenhouse. The trick is to select the right combination of screens resulting in the right light level at the crop level. In the PARperfect solution, the overhead Obscura is often used to screen out excess sunlight; in the summer, we go as high as 70%. Because of Harmony's diffusion properties, this works without creating unevenness: the screen breaks up light bands, and we can maintain a slightly higher light level on average with diffused light." In autumn/winter, you can close the lower screen again and the Harmony screen with faint sunshine, adds Peter Vogel. "You thereby realize energy savings with little loss of light. We can also allow a higher PAR sum to let the plant go into the winter with more reserves." The Priva climate computer controls the climate screens based on PAR sensors in the greenhouse. The challenge is to stay within control; you need a minimum screen setting for that, says Patrick Romeijn. "The Priva measures the light intensity inside, on which the screens open and close to reaching the desired value. These are technical gadgets that you

Installation of screens: a logistical combination

Installing the screens was fun and challenging for Huisman Scherming, says Huisman commercial director Dave Boer. "We spent several months installing the screens in the greenhouse. The objective was that our work should not hinder the plants. Not by the work, but also not by temperature differences, too much sunlight on the crop, humidity, or light emissions. This was a logistical interaction between Anthura and Huisman, and that requires good communication. The greenhouse is divided into several departments; we worked per department. But Anthura and Huisman have worked together for thirty years; we know what we have in common." PARperfect also fits perfectly with Anthura's desire to save energy. That was an essential condition to get the energy picture right, especially in this energy crisis, concludes Patrick Romeijn. "The screen configuration can make all kinds of screen combinations. We can leave a screen closed continuously without losing too much light at the crop level. And we can achieve an optimum light level without any disadvantage in terms of energy consumption." Advisor Bart Bakker of Svensson looks back with pleasure on the cooperation with Anthura. "For me, it is nice to go into depth with Patrick. Together we came to the choice of a transparent energy screen in combination with the PARperfect screen, based on graphs about the outside light. This is a nice solution to screen out the natural light in the months when screening is needed and to save energy in the winter."

ANTHURA IN BRIEF

Anthura is a specialist in the breeding and producing young plant material of anthurium and orchid. The breeding company has production sites in Bleiswijk, Germany, North Macedonia, and China. In Bleiswijk, in addition to breeding and R&D greenhouses, the production location on the Cyclamenweg is also located. This location has a production area of 10-hectares for the production of young anthurium plants. Anthura Arndt is located in Germany and has a production area of 11-hectares. This company is entirely focused on the production of phalaenopsis young plant material. In China and North Macedonia, Anthura has production laboratories for phalaenopsis and anthurium. The output of these goes to the production sites Anthura Arndt and Bleiswijk. There is also a greenhouse complex for producing young plant material for the Chinese market in China.

 

Learn more about how the application of PARperfect can support your growing goals through light management by downloading our white paper titled "The effect of varying levels of diffused light in floriculture".

Download our PARperfect whitepaper

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