Dümmen Orange invests in vertical fans
The greenhouse climate in the pressurized greenhouse of Dümmen Orange in Rheinberg, Germany, was initially far from optimal. This had negative consequences for both the crop and employees. To achieve a more active climate, the breeding and propagation company invested in vertical distribution fans.
Dümmen Orange’s location in Rheinberg is the heart of the international company. This is because 150 different types of mother plants are grown here, which serve as the basis for the propagation of cutting material. “These cuttings go to our branches all over the world to be cultivated there,” says Christiaan Rinkel. The Dutchman has been responsible for all cultivation matters at the site in Rheinberg for several years.
Fairly dead climate
In 2018 a new state-of-the-art greenhouse of 1 hectare was put into use. This concerned an overpressure greenhouse, where the air pressure in the greenhouse is higher than outside. “This means that nothing can get into the greenhouse and we keep our plants as healthy as possible. The greenhouse also has hardly any air windows; there are only a few windows for releasing the overpressure. ” However, the fact that no cold or warm air can be let into the greenhouse also resulted in a fairly dead climate. “This often made it clammy and stuffy and we had to get our people out of the greenhouse. The greenhouse climate was also not optimal for the crop. The plants were regularly too wet inside, which led to problems with rot and fungi, among other things. ”
Blow-in hoses and vertical fans
Rinkel saw creating more air movement as the solution. He therefore decided to expand the existing system of horizontal blowing hoses from VB Climate Technology with vertical distribution fans from Hinova. “We use the blow-in hoses to suck in outside air, which is then vertically introduced into the greenhouse by means of holes in the hoses. But this was not enough to bring the air to the bottom of the crop. That is why vertical fans were a must. ” The cultivation manager experimented with three types of vertical fans. Ultimately, the choice fell on the Hinovator. “This was the best price-quality ratio,” says Rinkel. “Ultimately, we installed blow-in hoses with these fans in all our departments; five per department. The various systems were fully operational in July. ”
The grower does not regret the investment made. The blow-in hoses in combination with the vertical fans ensure more air movement and a more active and more uniform greenhouse climate. “This is first and foremost good for our employees. They are happier and productivity is higher. The crop dries up faster, for example after misting. As a result, we have less to do with fungi and other cultivation issues. ”
More active greenhouse climate
Another advantage, according to Rinkel, is that the cuttings are hardened off better. The extra air movement leads to more effective evaporation. “This ensures that our cuttings thrive even better in the various growing locations in the world. In short: a more active greenhouse climate yields multiple benefits. ” Although the installation has a clear added value, according to the cultivation manager it still has to prove itself further. “In addition, the fans are not yet linked to the climate computer. They now invariably run at 70 percent of maximum capacity. We want to realize that link in the coming years, in order to make even more profit. ” Rinkel cannot name disadvantages. “It is also funny that the fans have a German motor, while the design comes from the Netherlands. That fits perfectly with my situation, as a / Dutch person in a German company. In both cases, the Netherlands-Germany is a great combination.