Carson Pancoast and Garrett Bowman
Crop: Forest tree seedlings (white and black spruce, poplar, larch, and lodgepole pine)
Location: Medicine Hat, Alberta, CAN
Greenhouse: Glass greenhouses
Climate Needs: Reduce heat loss and control humidity
Svensson Solutions: Luxous 1147FR for energy savings with high light transmission
Chinook Greenhouses utilizes Luxous screens to help reduce energy costs without sacrificing the sunlight needed for their tree seedling crops.
Forest tree seedlings may not be the first crop that comes to mind when one thinks of the Canadian greenhouse industry. However, greenhouse production plays an important role in reforestation efforts across the country, and Coast 2 Coast Reforestation is a major player. Combined, their five nurseries in Alberta can produce nearly 60 million container and bare root tree seedlings each year, and overall are the 2nd largest tree seedling producer in the country. Located in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Chinook Greenhouses (1990) is under the Coast 2 Coast umbrella and consists of over 450,000 ft2 of greenhouse space for its seedling crops of white and black spruce, poplar, larch, and lodgepole pine. It is owned and run by Carson Pancoast and Garrett Bowman, and has a capacity to produce 16 million seedlings each year.
One glasshouse in particular has been a focal point for Carson Pancoast since Chinook acquired it in 2019 from Mitzner Farms. It was equipped with a wired system for a climate screen, but the existing screen needed to be replaced. In late 2020, Pancoast installed Svensson’s Luxous 1147 FR in this 61,000 ft2 (5670 m2) range, allowing for better control over the greenhouse climate.
“Energy savings with high light transmission is key,” says Pancoast, “Especially in the early part of the year, when we want to encourage growth.” Luxous 1147 FR was specifically designed to provide both of these benefits and Pancoast has seen them realized in this facility. The greenhouse must be heated during Medicine Hat’s cold late winter and early spring, to help initiate and speed up the seedlings’ spring growth. Luxous 1147 FR reduces heat loss and boosts energy savings in this time period, while also allowing high light transmittance during a part of the year when natural light is critical. The screen also helps to keep humidity more consistent throughout the range and has the highest level of flame retardant properties.
In time, Pancoast hopes to install climate screens in additional greenhouse ranges at Chinook to help the company achieve greater control of their greenhouse climate and to save energy. “This first range has shown us what is possible to achieve with the use of climate screens.”