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Energy efficiency advice for horticulture

Hints and tips on saving energy in glasshouse production, focussing on heating and ventilation.

Horticulture and Field Grown Vegetables:

There is significant embodied energy in artificial fertilisers, as with glasshouse and polytunnel crop production. Research has shown that fuel use in the growth of glasshouse crops can be reduced by 10-30% by sealing any air leakages and draughts. For example ensure all openings are properly flush when closed and that there are no cracked or broken panes, with sealant still in place around all panes in glasshouses.

Thermal screens which retain heat can be installed to cut down on energy loss and this can be highly effective. For smaller operations, plastic sheeting can be used as a cheaper alternative, though less effective.

For larger greenhouses, low power fans can be installed which circulate air effectively, ensuring a better balanced temperature through the space, which will ensure your heating systems do not overheat the space and waste energy.