According to data provided by Rosstat, there is a large-scale drop of prices for vegetables in Russia and for tomatoes in particular. Most of the year the domestic market sells products grown in greenhouses. And though local tomatoes have been gradually replacing imported ones recently, not all of the consumers are satisfied with their flavoring quality. Luckily, this does not apply to tomatoes and other vegetables produced by APH ECO-Culture. And that is due to a qualitatively different approach to agriculture and to the use of natural cultivation methods only.
The AiF’s reporters have interviewed the chief agronomist of the APH, Svetlana Zudilova and found out how they get to grow tasty and healthy tomatoes in a greenhouse.
The first rule of making a quality product is to build high-tech greenhouses and equip those with automated computer control. Only using this kind of constructions one can create the most favorable microclimate for tomatoes and all other conditions necessary to reap not only a rich, but also a delicious harvest. The next thing is an organic substrate fortified with macro- and microelements. The greenhouse workers are constantly monitoring the condition of a soil mixture, taking regular samples, watching the way plants look like, and spreading fertilizers of well-balanced composition and amount. Thus, nitrogen, potassium, iron, manganese and many other elements are introduced to the plants at the right time and in the right quantities.
Apart from the above, greenhouse plants also need natural pollination – this is the only way for the fruits to get enough sugar and have a solid structure with no voids. And this can’t be done easily. For example, ECO-Culture has addressed the problem successfully with the help of bumblebees, bred specially for such purposes.
There are other little helpers, too – entomophagous insects, which completely exterminate greenhouse pests (whiteflies, thrips and others). In the ECO-Culture complexes no pesticides or other chemical pest management practices are used.
Proper illumination inside the greenhouses is provided by climate control systems, along with air conditioning and optimal humidity conditions. Only by combining all of these factors in the exactly right proportion, one can be sure that the tomatoes grown will not taste like plastic and the flesh will be firm, and not too watery. The time it takes for ripe tomatoes to get to the shelves can be crucial, too. Logistics Department of APH ECO-culture provides fast and well-organized transportation of vegetables preventing them from spoiling and changing their nutritional value.
See details in the AiF article.