"We are the southernmost nursery in all of Europe that has grown kiwi in the driest conditions to date," stated Didier Diaz, the director of Diego Díaz Viveros. Facing the challenge of cultivating this species for the first time and in extreme latitudes required a positive attitude.
The nursery, located in Murcia, specializes in stone fruit trees, almond trees, and olive trees for agricultural producers. It has customers throughout the country, as well as in foreign countries within and outside the EU. They have more than 30 years of experience in the sector, which helped them embark on the adventure of kiwi cultivation. Is it possible to produce kiwi in one of the driest areas in Europe?
Despite being used to working with another type of crop and, even though kiwi is not suitable for production in the Region of Murcia, they decided to start their cultivation in 2020.
Kiwi is a plant that does not withstand dry heat, cannot be cultivated in calcareous soils, does not withstand salt water or very low relative humidity, and all these conditions were present in Murcia. This has required the nursery to be very attentive and to invest in climate control in its facilities. To do this, they requested the services of the Novagric company.
Climatec: extra aid for the cultivation of kiwi
"We had to install the Climatec equipment to control the temperature and humidity parameters inside the greenhouse because the kiwi is a very delicate crop in these latitudes," stated Manuel, a Novagric commercial technician that was in charge of installing the project's equipment.
The climate controller designed by Novagric is a piece of equipment that, in addition to controlling temperature and humidity, is able to regulate structural elements, such as ventilation, heating, thermal or shading screens, humidification, etc.
"In this type of crop, it's very important that the temperature does not exceed 35º max. and that the relative humidity is above 35%. We chose to work with Novagric because they are at the forefront in this type of system," stated Francisco, the crop control technician.
In addition, Novagric makes it easy for them to control all the elements of the greenhouse from their mobile using its app, kit vigia.
The nursery also had to adapt its facilities to the plant. Didier said they had to add nebulizations below the cultivation tables to increase relative humidity and air destratification systems so that the kiwi plants achieved their optimal growth possible and to save the quality of the crop.
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