May 13, 2020 10:11 am Published by LauraE

Boosting Soft Fruit Production

When growing soft fruit, plant health is key and nutrition is vital

With more sophisticated horticultural growing practices being adopted, the use of foliar nutrition and biostimulant products is rising.

Foliar nutrition is becoming the cornerstone of a good IPM system, helping to mitigate the withdrawal of approved plant protection products. This enables Class 1 fruit to be grown at a sustainable cost level.

Nutrition is not only about feeding crops, it’s also about shelf life and quality – producing a healthy plant with both excellent finish and increased yield. OMEX independent labs, FACTs trained nutritionists and national distribution chain can assist in achieving this goal. OMEX tailor each crop nutrition programme to the specific crop.

 

Boost soft fruit production with OMEX

When boosting plant health, CalMax Ultra and Kelpak, offer a number of benefits:

CalMax Ultra:

  • Improved calcium levels
  • Improved fruit firmness
  • Improved shelf life
  • Protects against calcium related disorders

The increased leaf and fruit calcium, allows for longer storage life and less risk of physical damage as well as a greater resilience to physiological breakdown

 

Kelpak

  • Kelpak on soft fruit promotes a strong healthy root mass to support the plants through early establishment
  • Sequential sprays of Kelpak during flowering and early fruit set improves pollination resulting in better fruit shape and a more consistent size accross the crop
  • When used alongside CalMax Ultra it improves the fruit quality as well as encouraging better fruit set

 

Trials and Testimonials

CalMax Ultra:

Kelpak:

Kelpak applied 5 times with 4 week intervals increased the marketable fruit number and yield by 12% compared to the control without compromising fruit size and quality. This increase in production was mainly achieved between the two production peaks from week 23 up to and including week 30. A flower mapping assessment one month before the end of the cultivation period, showed that Kelpak trated plants had more potential flower clusters, more side crowns and more vegetative positions per truss and therefore the best potential for further development.

Kelpak Trial Summary:

The control treatment produced a total yield of 6.65kg/metre, the Kelpak treated produced a total yield of 7.45kg/metre. Of this increase 0.63kg where class 1 stawberries, which is worth about £1.75/metre in extra income.

In a commercial situation, even f a crop achieved a yield increase of half the amount measured in this trial, the extra income would be in the region of £6,000/ha and a return investment of 45:1 (based on a cropping density of 30,000 plants/ha and a price of £2.80/kg)


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