The right lighting
The results of the first tests at Esmeralda Farms showed that DR/W/FR for the Bupleurum crop gives rise to a much better quality crop, more uniform plant growth and longer stems. The crop was lit for 10 weeks, with the full cycle lasting 12 weeks up until the crop was ready to be harvested. In the case of Dianthus and Lysimachia, better results were achieved using DR/W. A little more time was required (one week longer), but this was offset by the savings on energy and the improved quality.
After four months working with the LED flowering lamps, an outstanding 91% reduction in energy costs, amounting to a total of US$ 18,000, was achieved. This is equivalent to an energy saving of US$ 16.50/hour/hectare. It is estimated that the investment will be recouped within the space of 11 months.
The long lifetime and improved water resistance of the LED flowering lamps resulted in reduced labor costs, because now there is no need for the lamps to be replaced every day.Having installed the LED flowering lamps, Esmeralda can now rely on fast growth cycles irrespective of the season.