Climate control is an essential part of greenhouse management. A greenhouse is a means to create a perfect microclimate adapted to the needs of specific crops, regardless of the weather outside. Centralized management of equipment facilitates precise control of heating, lighting, irrigation and other components of greenhouse management.
There are three (3) major categories of climate controls, from the most simple to the more sophisticated:
- Simple thermostats.
- Entry-line climate controls.
- Integrated, computer-controlled climate controls.
All make life easier for greenhouse growers by freeing them from monitoring certain parameters and automatically correcting any deficiencies detected in the desired climate.
It is important to choose a climate controller that matches the level of control needed. What distinguishes different models across the variety offered is the number of parameters that can be measured and the number of devices controlled to influence the climate.
In addition, some climate controllers can measure and collect photoperiod, rainfall, humidity as well as a variety of other data that influence growth and productivity of plants. This intensive data collection allows for very precise management of the climate.
More than just temperature control
Today, computer assisted climate control does much more than simply control the temperature of the greenhouse. It is an essential tool for sound financial and energy management of any horticultural production facility. Using the collected data, the controller can draw a bilateral energy balance in real time and make the adjustments necessary to achieve significant savings. The producer is then able to make informed decisions about the conduct of his/her production in order to obtain maximum performance and return on investment.
All modern climate controls allow for the transfer of data to a computer via USB key, for models of low to mid-range, or through the software provided with the more upscale models.