The company Fruit Gardens d.o.o. is a trade and service company based in Velika Ludina, Ulica Moslavačkih vinograda 9, Katoličko Selišće. The subject of business is agricultural activity, production of agricultural products, and it was established with the aim of growing nuts and nuts.
Based on the fact of market demand for quality apple, the company Vrtovi voća d.o.o. joined the group of entrepreneurs who see their business opportunity in intensive fruit production of apples and in 2011 began a project to raise orchards in the area of Velika Ludina in areas where there were once apple orchards within the PPK Zagreb. The company Fruit Gardens d.o.o. was officially entered in the Register of Agricultural Holdings in 2011. The project of raising and equipping 14.5 ha of intensive orchard was applied for a tender from the IPARD program at the beginning of 2012 and was successfully implemented during 2012 and 2013. The apple orchard is becoming more and more fruitful and should have reached its maximum. yield of 60 t / ha. Unfortunately, due to the appearance of frost in 2016 and 2017, the yield in those years was not realized and it was planned to invest in a system of protection against frost (anti frost). Apple production in the Fruit Gardens company is in accordance with the principles of integrated production and since 2014 it has been entered in the register of integrated producers, since 2014 it has been certified by GLOBALG.A.P. standard.
Apple orchards were planted in the municipality of Velika Ludina, k.o. Katoličko Selišće, cp no. 4805/12 and 4805/8. The distribution of varieties by areas produced is as follows:
- Golden Delicious (clone Reinders) - 6.5 ha (cp no. 4805/8)
- Jonagold (clones Morrens Jonagored Supra and Wiltons Red Jonaprince) - 5.5 ha (cp no. 4805/12)
- Idared - 2.5 ha (cat. No. 4805/12)
Anti frost system
Analysis of climate parameters and monitoring of the production cycle in the period from 2012 to 2015 shows a pronounced occurrence of extreme situations of long and dry periods, periods with high intensity of precipitation, as well as the occurrence of late spring frosts. Particularly increased frequency of frost, which directly affects the loss of complete gender for the upcoming season, where gender insurance does not cover all costs, all this requires the application of active protection measures and reducing production risks.
Since the existing apple production in the project area had a drip irrigation system, water storage and the necessary equipment for regular operation of the system, the restructuring planned to use all elements of the system that are within the set parameters for frost protection system.
Late spring frost protection system is based on the phenomenon of water anomaly when when changing the physical state 1 gram of water from liquid to solid state releases 80 Cal of energy. This energy is used to maintain the temperature of the flower and young fruit at a temperature of 0 to -2ºC. At the same time, an icy crust of moist ice is made over the flower and the fruit, whose temperature is 0ºC, and a needle effect is used to protect the genus.
We start the frost protection system at + 2 ° C measured on a humid thermometer, or when we are sure that there will be frost, but always an hour before the announced risk of frost. When we protect the space (atmosphere and soil with moisture), then reduced evaporation occurs, thus achieving a microclimate with 100% relative humidity and prevents heat loss by radiation, while retaining the energy obtained by freezing water.
We stop the system after all the ice has melted, especially if there is a light wind in the morning.
The Fruit Gardens project included the construction of a suction pipeline with a pump unit, a filter plant, protective equipment in the pumping station, a primary supply pipeline, a field control unit, a secondary pipeline, an orchard distribution network and emitters installed on a pre-defined frost protection grid. restructuring existing perennial apple orchards.
The system in Velika Ludina protected the apple at -5 ° C with a rainfall intensity of 1.2 mm / m2 / h of water. The maximum flow of the system was 203 m3 / h. The accumulation required for one day of protection was 3000 m3 / h of water and the whole system was provided with an accumulation of 30,000 m3 sufficient for 10 days of plantation protection. Energy consumption was 120 kW / h which was spent on diesel pump unit and filter plant.
Within the microlocation of the system, three agrometeorological stations have been installed with equipment for meteorological monitoring and systemic monitoring of pressure within the water supply system (antifrost system and drip irrigation system). Three agrometeorological stations cover the microclimate within 40 hectares of plantations.
FPS is a complete microclimatic solution for agriculture. Current applications are in fruit systems, with a primary focus on protection against early spring frosts. Future system implementations will include (i) pamento irrigation (risk of possible soil dehydration), (ii) smart fertilization (iii) fire and gust warnings, and (iv) models to predict the development of plant diseases and pests.