New agricultural environmental management regulations for BC: An overview

New agricultural environmental management regulations for BC: An overview

Introduced earlier this year, new rules for agricultural environmental management were put in place for all agricultural operators in British Columbia, including greenhouse growers.

Leave the cucumber virus  at the door

Leave the cucumber virus at the door

It’s been almost five years since the cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV) was first reported in Greenhouse Canada, but that doesn’t mean growers should be any less vigilant.

A sneak preview of the 2019 Canadian Greenhouse Conference

A sneak preview of the 2019 Canadian Greenhouse Conference

The Canadian Greenhouse Conference is celebrating its 40th anniversary! Forty years is quite a legacy, and the CGC is proud to continue to support the greenhouse industry with an event that educates and inspires.

Leafy green vertical farm opens in Guelph

Leafy green vertical farm opens in Guelph

A state-of-the-art, fully automated 45,000 sq. ft. vertical farm is now operational in Guelph, ON.

How to create your ideal light environment

How to create your ideal light environment

There are three characteristics of light you should consider when designing the ideal light environment for your crops: light quality, light quantity and light duration.

Earlier this year, Signify introduced their Philips GreenPower LED toplighting compact to the European market which has since been made available in Canada and the United States.
Proven Winners is entering the pottery market by adding the full line of Michael Carr Designs Pottery, including the new AquaPots line of luxury grade, self-watering containers, to its brand family.
Rockwool supplier Grodan has brought their e-Gro software platform to the North American market.
All-America Selections has announced the first winners from their three-winter Herbaceous Perennial Trial: Echinacea Sombrero Baja Burgundy and Rudbeckia American Gold Rush.
A new growth-tracking tool and mum selector aim to help growers produce the best garden mums from start to finish.
Dümmen Orange has expanded Basewell to include their top-selling perennial varieties, opening up the technology to perennial growers across North America.
Signify (formerly Philips Lighting) recently launched new Philips GreenPower LED toplighting module in Canada, with light efficacy of up to 3.0 µmol/J and an output of 800 µmol/s.
Starter-plant supplier Emerald Coast Growers has released the latest version of its trend-tracking new variety Resource Guide.
A new weight-based watering system could help growers and retailers ensure uniformity of soil moisture across their hanging baskets.
Smithers-Oasis has recently launched a new retail pack of its Oasis® Horticubes growing media.
The California Spring Trials (CAST) were started by Glenn Goldsmith in 1967 which was for the purpose of educating growers of their breeding programs and their commitment to horticulture, and then other breeders started to join in the event to include almost every horticultural breeder distributor. The name evolved from the ‘California pack trials’ to now ‘California Spring Trials’ since the packs are a very small percentage of the industry.
Photographs can be beautiful, but nothing quite beats the rush of seeing new varieties in real life.
There are three characteristics of light you should consider when designing the ideal light environment for your crops: light quality, light quantity and light duration.
The first two floors of 1400 Rue Antonio Barbeau in Montreal look like they belong on any other low-density commercial building – blocky, covered in mottled brown brick and windows gazing into a beige interior. Just over the lip of its roof, though, peeks long walls made of glass and metal, and inside them, rows of vegetables.
With simple automation during propagation, a grower could experience a 25 per cent gain in production. Automating the full process could lead to 50, 60 or 70 per cent gain in efficiency. So what's the main barrier to adopting new automation machinery? Grower acceptance, says Jack Ford of Agrinomix.
What exactly is 'next generation' growing? Pieter Kwakernaak of Hoogendoorn explains how the three plant balances - water, assimilate and energy - should dictate how production practices are carried out in the greenhouse.
"Think about what you're trying to achieve during plant propagation," says Dr. Will Healy of Ball Hort. The goal is to put roots on a plant and try to grow healthy, green leaves. It all comes down to plant moisture and nutrition. But don't water too much! According to Healy, a grower's number one job is to dry out the plants.
What are the benefits to LEDs during propagation? Dr. Youbin Zheng of the University of Guelph talks about the versatility of LEDs. Different spectrums and combinations can change the morphology at different stages of the plants. As LED technology continues to improve and its prices go down, more and more commercial greenhouses are using LEDs to replace HPS.
Armed with the latest greenhouse technology, this Yukon grower is bringing fresh vegetables to Canada’s northern climates.
In January’s issue of Greenhouse Canada, readers were introduced to the concept of ‘Growing by Plant Empowerment’ (GPE). Combining grower experience and knowledge of plant physiology, the goal of GPE is to optimize the behaviour of plants in the greenhouse environment by maintaining critical balances involving energy, water, CO2 and assimilates within the plant.
As energy and production costs continue to rise for the horticulture sector, commercial greenhouse growers need to do all they can to operate more efficiently. One way growers are doing this is by installing energy curtain systems in their greenhouses.
There’s something different about the glass at Freeman Herbs – it’s pink.
With so many other tasks requiring attention, modern greenhouses are beginning to integrate automated systems for crop moisture assessment.
What is plant empowerment? Typically, traditional plant production methods are based on a mixture of blueprints, best practices, common knowledge of plant physiology, as well as the ‘green fingers’ and ‘emotional perception’ of growers. This approach has been successful, but also has several limitations.
It’s been almost five years since the cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV) was first reported in Greenhouse Canada, but that doesn’t mean growers should be any less vigilant.
Pest management is a critical part of any commercial greenhouse. Despite its importance, tracking its delivery and progress can still be a challenge.
We all know what they say about assumptions. When diagnosing crops with little tolerance for damage, it’s important not to let preconceived notions lead you down the wrong path. Here are some common mistakes to avoid making when diagnosing insect and disease issues in ornamentals.
If you started out using biological control for whitefly in your poinsettia crop this year, you’ve now reached a crucial tipping point. Based on the size of your Bemisia whitefly population in mid-late September, your populations could end up being too high by November to effectively bring under control. Ultimately, this could affect sales.
There might be a weevil trapped on your yellow sticky card, but whether it’s the dreaded pepper weevil calls for a closer look.
Tip burn in greenhouse lettuce might not be as simple as it sounds.
For plants, sulphur (S) is essential for growth and development. Many forms of S exist in plants. These include: sulphate, the main source of S extracted from soil; amino acids important to plant health; and, other compounds needed for plant defence.
Already established in her retail and wholesale ornamental business, Nadine Stielow, owner of Thiel’s Greenhouses in Bruderheim, Alta., considered a number of crops, examined consumer demand and local supply, then reached out to industry consultants before settling on hydroponic lettuce.
Every IPM strategy emphasizes prevention. This includes starting clean and maintaining a resilient pest management program thereafter. The basic principles to achieve this are minimizing pest entry, maximizing plant resistance and using biocontrol to manage the residual pest populations.
The countdown to Grower Day 2019 is on! Last year, Dr. Rose Buitenhuis of Vineland Research and Innovation Centre talked ornamental cutting dips. What are some key steps to a successful dip?
Biofungicide Regalia Maxx has received label approval from Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency, for the suppression of powdery mildew and gray mold in indoor cannabis crops.
Basil downy mildew is a relatively new disease of both field and greenhouse basil in Ontario. The disease requires diligent management in the greenhouse. Diseased plants that enter from the field or garden can contribute to epidemics if weather conditions permit. The incidence of diseased plants in retail locations has decreased in the past few years due to better management in greenhouses.
Introduced earlier this year, new rules for agricultural environmental management were put in place for all agricultural operators in British Columbia, including greenhouse growers.
As a new and more ethnically diverse wave of Canadian consumers set up households, their plant purchasing habits are causing shifts in the floriculture sector.
Halfway through another strong growing season in Ontario, a seasonal labour program created more than half a century ago continues to prove its worth and puts fresh, local food on dinner tables across the province.
Whether it’s fashion, food products, gardening or other aspects of life, consumer tastes change. To find out what’s hot this year, what will be in demand for the next, and most importantly, how to best sell it, we checked in with some leading experts from coast to coast.
“I started working part-time for Harster Greenhouses when I was about 15 years old,” says Adrian Kemper. His first summer was spent painting heating pipes. From there, he went on to tackle numerous different roles, ranging from order processing to greenhouse building.
Although skilled tax lawyers may dispute the second half of Mark Twain’s famous claim that “the only two certainties in life are death and taxes,” the death part is hard to avoid. The urgency of succession planning for business owners is particularly acute, as declining health might require others to run the business long before the passing of the founder.
As summer sets in, the entire horticulture industry pivots. Greenhouses prepare for next year, garden centres are in full swing, and horticulture students across Canada take off their graduation caps and head into the workforce.
For the Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN) in northern Manitoba, new smart farming technology is improving their access to fresh, healthy food in a big way.
Food fraud is a growing problem, costing the global food trade an estimated $30-$40 billion USD in annual losses, and it can put public health at risk. While the term is typically defined as ‘intentional deception using food for economic gain’ there are seven different types of food fraud, as laid out in the chart below.
The business planning process is a critical tool for the creation, expansion or diversification of any business, and it needs to be updated regularly. A business plan is essentially a game plan – a written record of goals and how to reach them. It should describe the product or service offered, customers and market competition, management and financial arrangements, as well as a marketing plan.
Industry expansion south of the border seems to have slowed for some Canadian greenhouse operators, but others are still building both domestically and internationally.
The longer someone interacts with plant material, the more likely they are to spend money, says Dr. Bridget Behe, professor of horticulture at Michigan State University. But she’s not talking hours or minutes – they’re mere seconds.
University of Windsor researchers have teamed with local produce growers to improve greenhouse energy efficiency and decrease operating costs.
Canadian greenhouses are expecting a harsh winter in terms of energy. Rates have been steadily rising for years, but the explosion of the Enbridge natural gas pipeline in British Columbia may be the final straw, as B.C. growers are now facing a shortage of up to 50 per cent during the coming winter months.
Is cogeneration the latest innovation for greenhouse growers or just a passing fad? It’s understandable why growers are assessing the potential.
With dark, short days in winter months, growing in Canada isn’t easy – even in controlled environments like greenhouses. To keep providing markets with high-quality produce, supplemental lighting is top of mind for many greenhouse vegetable producers.
It’s been over a decade since the first ‘Inside View’. So I thought I’d look back to the first heating and energy article. The sixth ‘View’ (Dec. 2007), noted that “Canada is the 3rd largest energy consumer on the planet – demand is up 21% since 1990”.
When it comes to adding energy curtains (sometimes referred to as thermal blankets) to a greenhouse everyone focuses on energy savings. And certainly energy savings should be a major factor in any greenhouse grower’s decision to purchase energy curtains.
June 17, 2017, Mona, UT – In recognition of leading energy saving efforts, Houweling’s Group was among four companies honored recently as part of Utah’s Energy Efficiency Challenge.
March 16, 2017, Simcoe, Ont. – With the Ontario government’s cap and trade program now in effect, many greenhouse growers in the province are quickly discovering the high cost of fighting climate change. To some, that cost appears unsustainably high.
March April 2017 – Spring is a time of hope and renewed energy with longer days of sunshine and warmer weather. It is also a great time to reflect on how energy costs in the past months have impacted your bottom line, and to work with your team to make your greenhouse more cost-effective for the year to come.
March 10, 2017, Guelph, Ont. – Ontario farmers can finally expect some relief with lower electricity bills on the way.
Nov. 25, 2016, Guelph, Ont. – Affordable energy is a serious issue in Ontario. Rural Ontario is the hardest hit by energy inflation with most businesses, residents and farms relying on electricity, propane or heating oil to support their way of life.
Nov. 7, 2016, Guelph, Ont. – The need for natural gas across rural Ontario is a top priority for the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) and rural municipalities.
Arable soil scarcity, climate change and higher recurrence of extreme weather events are prompting a shift from outdoor to indoor farming, which has eco-sustainable methods and a lower environmental impact.
Crop LED lighting provider, Fluence Bioengineering (Fluence), has announced its partnership with Ontario-based organic licensed cannabis producer The Green Organic Dutchman (TGOD).
Cloudy and rainy weather during the past months has resulted in many serious outbreaks of Botrytis grey mold in lettuce and in many other crops. This ubiquitous fungus readily attacks lettuce because of the moist, enclosed microclimate created in the lettuce head. If remedial measures are not taken at the first sign of infection, serious crop losses can occur.
Canadian licensed producer Zenabis has received a cultivation licence from Health Canada for the first portion of their operation in Langley, B.C., growing their annual cultivation capacity by more than 30 per cent.This is expected to increase their operation’s capacity from 32,900 kg to 42,800 kg of dried cannabis.
The Ohio State University cultivar trials were on display once again, coinciding with annual conference and tradeshow Cultivate'19.
Poinsettia don't have many problems, note OMAFRA floriculture specialists Dr. Sarah Jandricic and Dr. Chevonne Dayboll, but when issues arise, they can hit a crop fast and hard.
The 2019 collection of Exceptionnelles highlights vivid plants that will appeal to all generations of consumers. Some attract pollinators and hummingbirds, while others boast spectacular flowers or foliage. Some will add colour to shaded areas and others will brighten flower boxes or add volume to municipal flower beds.
In March of this year I had the opportunity to travel from LA to San Francisco on a Ball-sponsored bus that was inhabited primarily by Canadian sales staff and buyers.
From growing indoor or outdoor to key pitfalls in cannabis propagation, Bill MacDonald of Niagara College talks cannabis production. How similar is it to growing other horticultural crops?
Tulips are a sure sign of spring, and for the Dutch people and their descendants, this could not be more true.
When you think of ornamental grasses, you may think of lush landscapes or creative containers. But today’s newer cultivars, and even some of the species, make a great addition to cut bouquets and arrangements. With a bit of planning and production scheduling, ornamental grasses can be a productive addition to cut flower greenhouses.
Imagine popping a tiny green seedling into your mouth. You’re pretty sure you know what it’s going to taste like. But then your taste buds are hit with a completely unexpected flavour that reminds you of spicy horseradish.

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