Combining ReduSystems products
Since the launch of ReduHeat in 2005 users often ask us if it is possible to combine different ReduSystems coatings with one another. Just to make it clear, when we talk about combining we mean ‘layering’ one coating over another, not mixing the products because that can definitely cause problems. We get the same question from users of the new diffuse coatings, such as ReduFuse and ReduFuse IR. So what is possible and what is the advantage?
By combining the ReduSystems coatings it’s possible to shade according to the light intensity throughout the year. Crops that emerge from a dark winter period are often directly exposed to the sun’s strong radiation in February. Usually it is still too early to apply a product such as ReduSol because on cloudy days this shades out too much light.
A few years ago we carried out some trials that combined ReduHeat and ReduSol within a single shading season. ReduHeat was applied to the greenhouse roof in February and provided the crops with initial protection against the bright sun, yet sufficient light entered the greenhouse. Several months later a thin layer of ReduSol was sprayed over the ReduHeat to protect the crop during warm, sunny summer days.
ReduHeat has the positive feature that it allows large amounts of PAR light to enter while reflecting heat (IR) radiation. Applying a layer of ReduSol over the ReduHeat doesn’t alter this property but increases the total amount of shading (see figure below). UV light and rain will wear away the thin layer of ReduSol but have little effect on the ReduHeat coating underneath. The consequence is that in the late summer months of August and September there is still a layer of protection, just in case some warm days still occur.
This method has a positive effect on the crop. As the summer approaches the plant receives more and more protection and still sufficient light during the season to develop. Another advantage is that you don’t have to provide so much artificial light during the spring on cloudy days because sufficient light enters the greenhouse.
All of Mardenkro’s ReduSystems coatings can be combined, but ReduSol should always be the second layer. Applying ReduSol first and then the other coating on top is not effective because the properties of the last applied product won’t be exhibited.
At the end of the shading season, or when desired, both layers can be removed in one go with the cleaning agent ReduClean. We strongly advise not to combine products from different manufacturers because cleaning principles and substances differ. This can lead to problems with removal.
Coatings and high-pressure misting keep crops growing
More and more growers are using high-pressure misting systems. In combination with coatings, this is an excellent way of keeping crops active and productive in hot summers.
Delaying crop growth in anticipation of better times
The market for ornamental products has declined drastically due to the coronavirus. Many growers have questions about slowing down their crop growth in order to lower or postpone production.