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Author Archive | Chris Higgins

ICCEA-why

Why should you attend the International Congress for Controlled Environment Agriculture 2017? – Part 2

As I posted earlier this month, I have been fielding a lot of questions from industry peers asking why Hort Americas continues to support, sponsor and have a booth at the 2nd International Congress on Controlled Environment Agriculture (ICCEA). This event is scheduled for May 17-19, 2017, in Panama City, Panama. I thought the best […]

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Why the International Congress for Controlled Environment Agriculture 2017? – Part 1

Recently I have been fielding a lot of questions from industry peers asking why Hort Americas continues to support, sponsor and even have a booth at the 2nd International Congress on Controlled Environment Agriculture (ICCEA). This event is scheduled for May 17-19, 2017, in Panama City, Panama. I thought the best way to respond was […]

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Plant pathologist Ann Chase at Chase Agricultural Consulting said algae tend to be the biggest problem with recirculating water. The optimum conditions for growing greenhouse crops are the same conditions that allow algae to thrive.
Photos courtesy of Peter Konjoian, Konjoian’s Horticulture
Education Services

Water quality, treatments are focus of Cultivate’15 educational sessions

As pressure on fresh water supplies increases, more growers will look at recycling their water. Recycling water can add a whole range of challenges that growers may not have had to deal with before. Speakers at this year’s Cultivate’15 discussed some of the issues growers may face when recirculating and treating irrigation water.   By […]

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Indoor Harvest Corp Provides Update on CLARA Vertical Farm Project in Pasadena, Texas

Houston, Texas, June 25, 2015 — Indoor Harvest Corp (OTCQB:INQD), through its brand name Indoor Harvest™, is a design build contractor, developer, marketer and direct-seller of commercial grade aeroponic and hydroponic fixtures and supporting systems for use in urban Controlled Environment Agriculture and Building Integrated Agriculture. The Company is pleased to provide an update on […]

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Buffering coir not necessary if it’s processed properly

Proper processing of coir to lower its natural high salts level should eliminate the need to buffer it with calcium nitrate. By David Kuack   Coir has become a major component of both greenhouse vegetable and container crop production. It can be used by itself, for instance in grow bags, slabs and propagation cubes, or it can […]

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Evaluating field-bred lettuce varieties for hydroponic greenhouse production

University of Arkansas researchers trialed 65 lettuce varieties to determine their potential for production in greenhouse hydroponic systems.   By David Kuack   An increasing number of greenhouse ornamental plant growers are looking to expand into edible crops. There are also field vegetable growers who would like to expand their production to include greenhouse crops. […]

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Photo 1, DSC_0404, Heidi Wollaeger, Mich. St. Univ.

Could LEDs replace plant growth retardants?

Researchers at Michigan State University used LED lights to produce compact flower and tomato seedling plugs. By David Kuack Growers and researchers are studying the effects that specific light wavelengths can have on ornamental and edible crops. Research studies are focusing on the effect light wavelengths can have on a variety of plant processes including […]

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High tunnels enable growers to increase production of high-value berries

 High tunnels can be a part of a production system that allows growers to produce berries year-round while improving fruit yields and quality.   By David Kuack   High tunnels have different uses in different places, said Marvin Pritts, professor and chair of the Horticulture Section of Cornell University’s School of Integrative Plant Science in […]

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LEDs have the potential to change how crops are grown

The use of LEDs to provide specific light wavelengths could allow growers to increase nutritional values of edible crops, enhance the intensity of foliage and flower color and improve the postharvest longevity of ornamental and edible crops. By David Kuack Improvement in the light intensity delivered by light emitting diodes (LEDs) is helping to expand […]

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Meeting the fertilization needs of greenhouse lettuce

Greenhouse lettuce can be a successful container or hydroponic crop for ornamental plant growers looking to give edibles a try. By David Kuack Ornamental plant growers considering producing an edible greenhouse crop may want to try lettuce. Neil Mattson, associate horticulture professor at Cornell University, said lettuce is a plant with moderate fertility needs. “Grown […]

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Plant factories continue to evolve

As technology improves, plant factories have the potential to operate in the U.S. and Canada to produce crops that are difficult to grow using current conventional methods. By David Kuack When you hear the term “plant factory” what picture comes to mind? University of Florida professor and mechanical engineer John Schueller said the traditional definition […]

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A new Ohio State University farm-to-fork project offers students fresh produce

Ohio State University corporate executive chef Lesa Holford has started growing edibles in a campus greenhouse for use in food prepared for the school’s dining facilities. By David Kuack Since August, kale, basil and romaine lettuce have been growing in an Ohio State University College of Agriculture greenhouse. These crops aren’t part of a research […]

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Short course to focus on controlled environment agriculture

University of Arizona Controlled Environment Agriculture Center is hosting the 14th annual short course focused on greenhouse production and design. The 14th annual Greenhouse Crop Production & Engineering Design Short Course, March 22–27, 2015, will be held at the Westward Look Resort in Tucson, Ariz. Hosted by the University of Arizona Controlled Environment Agriculture Center […]

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LEDs found to have multiple uses on multiple crops

Researchers at Purdue University are finding LEDs can have positive effects on both ornamentals and leafy vegetables. By David Kuack As more research is done with light emitting diodes (LEDs), scientists are discovering new ways to use the lights on ornamental and edible plants. Researchers at Purdue University have done extensive studies on annual bedding […]

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Deardorff Family Farms donates school salad bar during Tour de Fresh

Deardorff Family Farms in Oxnard, Calif., donated a salad bar to Sequoia Middle School in Newbury Park, Calif., on Oct. 15, 2014. The donation was part of the Tour de Fresh four-day fundraising cycling event. The company was a silver sponsor of the event. Tom Deardorff II, president at Deardorff Family Farms, who attended the […]

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Organic fertilizers provide option to grow more sustainably

Organic fertilizers offer growers another tool for producing their crops with more sustainable inputs. By David Kuack Growers of both food and ornamental crops are facing increased scrutiny regarding their production practices from the pesticides they apply to the amount of water and energy they use. In October, Whole Foods Market launched its Responsibly Grown […]

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University of Arizona Intensive Course will focus on hydroponic greenhouse tomato production

University of Arizona’s Hydroponic Greenhouse Tomato Production Intensive Course is a six-day program that focuses on the specifics of hydroponic greenhouse production.   The Hydroponic Greenhouse Tomato Production Intensive Course will be conducted Jan. 4-9, 2015, at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Hosted by the university’s Controlled Environment Agriculture Center, the course will focus […]

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Southwest Perennials improves production, shortens crop time with LEDs

Young plant grower Southwest Perennials has been able to reduce the number of stock plants, increase the number of viable rooted cuttings and shorten rooting times with LEDs. By David Kuack Jerry and Jonathan Soukup at Southwest Perennials in Dallas, Texas, are constantly looking for ways to maximize production of their starter plants. The father-son […]

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Growers, investors discuss horticultural opportunities

Attendees at the first “Realities of Growing Plants Indoors” Short Course learned what it takes culturally to produce controlled environment crops as well as how to finance and market their businesses. By David Kuack Based on the phone calls Gene Giacomelli receives at the University of Arizona he said growers and would-be growers aren’t talking […]

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Growing through the California drought

Bill Phillimore, executive vice president at Paramount Farming Co. in Shafter, Calif., spoke at this year’s Seeley Summit which focused on water. Phillimore, whose company is a producer of a variety of tree crops, discussed the impact the drought has had on water availability and trying to operate under severe water restrictions. By David Kuack […]

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