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What’s the best way to compare lighting efficiency?

When choosing horticultural lighting, growers need to consider lighting efficiency and how the lighting will be used. There is a big difference between lighting efficiency for horticulture and lighting efficiency for consumer use. The difference is in who is receiving the light. “From a human perspective since the early 20th century there was a number […]

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Hort Americas looks to be a connecter of products and knowledge for the horticulture industry

Whether growers are producing vegetables, ornamentals or other hydroponic crops, Hort Americas is working to provide its customers with the products and knowledge they need to be successful.
When Hort Americas in Bedford, Texas, started operating as a wholesale horticulture distributor in March 2009, the company had no existing customer base.

“We would sell anything we could to anyone who would buy from us,” said general manager Chris Higgins. “That is not uncommon for new companies starting out, especially those that are doing wholesale supplies.

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What are the benefits of maintaining the optimum substrate oxygen level?

Increasing the oxygen level in the root zone can ensure healthy root growth and can impact crop yields. Low oxygen levels in the growing substrate can play havoc with the health of both vegetable and ornamental plants. Shalin Khosla, greenhouse vegetable specialist at Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs in Harrow, Ontario, said […]

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What are the benefits of applying greenhouse shading products?

Sudlac shading products give greenhouse growers of flowers and vegetables the ability to increase and extend production during periods of warm temperatures and high light levels. High temperatures and high light levels, especially during the summer can have negative effects on ornamental and vegetable crops produced in protected structures, including greenhouses. An economical way for […]

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Dissolved oxygen improves plant growth, reduces crop time

Incorporating dissolved oxygen into hydroponic production systems during warmer temperatures can help improve plant growth and reduce crop time. Trying to grow hydroponic crops like leafy greens can be a real challenge during warmer times of the year. Growers have few options to lower temperatures, including cooling the greenhouse and/or water temperature. Another production technique […]

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What are the optimum nutrient levels for hydroponic edible crops?

Trials with organic and conventional fertilizers in hydroponic production systems are showing it’s possible to produce edible crops at much lower nutrient levels. How much different is it growing edible crops organically than it is with conventional production inputs? Hort Americas special projects manager Tyler Baras is studying the differences in trying to grow organically […]

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Breeding crops for controlled environment production

Controlled environment agriculture growers have been trying to fit a square peg into a round hole by growing field crops in indoor environments. This is changing as research tries to match plant genetics with the production environment. During this year’s International Congress on Controlled Environment Agriculture (ICCEA) in Panama City, Panama, University of Florida horticulture professor […]

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AmericanHort technology tour to visit Hort Americas hydroponic research greenhouse

Tour of Hort Americas research and demonstration greenhouse in Dallas will show growers different hydroponic production systems for various vegetable crops. Growers of hydroponic vegetables or those considering starting growing vegetables hydroponically should plan on attending the AmericanHort Production Technology Conference. Scheduled for Oct. 9-11 in Dallas, the conference begins with a Technology in Action […]

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GLASE consortium aims to improve greenhouse energy efficiency

Even though the Greenhouse Lighting and Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium is New York-based, the research it is doing has the potential to impact controlled environment agriculture worldwide. The Greenhouse Lighting and Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium is a partnership between Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in Albany, N.Y. The consortium will […]

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The impact of transplanting times, light exposure on hydroponic crop production

How quickly hydroponically-grown lettuce and leafy greens seedlings are transplanted and their exposure to LED light during propagation can impact crop production times. Most growers using traditional hydroponic substrates transplant lettuce and leafy greens seedlings as soon as the roots reach the bottom of the plugs. This usually takes from seven to 10 days. “We […]

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Be aware of the challenges of using loose substrates in hydroponic production systems

If you’re going to use a loose substrate in a hydroponic production system, you may have to change how you handle starter plants and the treatment of recycled water. Many growers of ornamental plants including annuals and perennials traditionally use a peat-based substrate such as 70 percent peat, 30 percent perlite. The growers, who produce […]

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Are you maintaining the proper oxygen levels in your hydroponic production system?

Growers have affordable options for ensuring plants receive sufficient oxygen in hydroponic production systems to maximize growth and to reduce the chances of disease.   Oxygen is critical in the development and growth of edible crops grown in hydroponic systems such as nutrient film technique (NFT) and deep water raft culture. Tyler Baras, special projects […]

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Industry survey seeks information on hydroponic food production

Researchers at Michigan State and Iowa State Universities are looking for feedback from hydroponic food growers to help them determine where research is needed to benefit the industry. If you are doing hydroponic food production or thinking about doing this type of production, your input is needed. Controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) production researchers Roberto Lopez and […]

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Organic vs. traditional hydroponic production: the top 3 differences

When it comes to changing from conventional to organic hydroponic production methods, there are three main areas that growers find most challenging. Tyler Baras, special projects manager at Hort Americas in Bedford, Texas, said growers are increasingly inquiring about organic hydroponic production. Baras is running hydroponic production trials comparing organic and conventional production methods in […]

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Looking for a better, easier way to do greenhouse IPM?

Greenhouse Scout is an integrated pest management app that makes it easier to collect, store and analyze scouting data along with identifying insect pests and which beneficials can be used to control them. Most greenhouse growers know the benefits of scouting their crops for pest insects and mites. Scouting can help to identify and minimize […]

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P.L. Light Systems’ HortiLED series of grow lights meets the requirements of controlled environment agriculture

Whether greenhouse, vertical farm or warehouse growers are propagating or producing ornamental, vegetable or cannabis crops, P.L. Light Systems offers the LED fixtures to meet their lighting needs. P.L. Light Systems develops and manufactures supplemental lighting systems for the horticultural industry. The nearly 40-year-old company manufactures traditional light sources, including high pressure sodium (HPS) and […]

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Grodan rockwool substrates offer growers more control

Grodan stone wool products offer the benefits of high irrigation efficiency, plant steerability and uniform crop development. Grodan stone wool substrates are made from basalt rock that is processed at a very high temperature (over 2,900ºF). This hygienic, inert substrate offers vegetable and ornamental plant growers the opportunity to control growth from propagation to harvest. […]

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Substrate trials look to assist hydroponic growers avoid propagation-related issues

Substrate trials in Hort Americas’ research greenhouse are looking at conventional and organic propagation substrates along with different irrigation strategies for producing healthy starter plugs for hydroponic production systems. Hort Americas has retrofitted a 12,000-square-foot greenhouse in Dallas, Texas, for the purpose of studying edible crop production in a variety of hydroponic production systems. The […]

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Fertilizer trials look at leafy greens, herb growth in hydroponic production systems

Early results from fertilizer trials in Hort Americas’ research greenhouse show knowing the levels of nutrients in fertilizer solutions can go a long way in avoiding problems with deficiencies and toxicities. Hort Americas has retrofitted a 12,000-square-foot greenhouse in Dallas, Texas, for the purpose of studying edible crop production in a variety of hydroponic production […]

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Hort Americas retrofits greenhouse for trialing hydroponic growing systems, products

Hort Americas’ special projects manager Tyler Baras is using a 12,000-square-foot hydroponic greenhouse to teach company staff and customers what it takes to economically grow leafy greens and herbs. Tyler Baras is a well-traveled grower. He has worked in Florida and Colorado growing hydroponic greenhouse vegetables, including organic crops. He is now taking the knowledge […]