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P.L. Light Projects

Greenbelt Organic Greens

Thanks to the consistently exceptional quality of their product, Greenbelt Organic Greens has fast become a top local producer of packaged salad greens—all grown organically, without the use of pesticides and herbicides.

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Project Details

Location: Lynden, ON

Crop: Organic Salad Greens

Luminaire: HortiLED Top 2.0

Spectrum: RWMB

Project Results

With its close proximity to the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), Greenbelt’s 3.5-acre greenhouse is perfectly positioned to provide the major grocery chains with a consistent supply of locally grown greens. Their proximity to the end customer not only aligns with ever-increasing consumer demand for hyper-local produce, but also allows for minimal transportation time between the greenhouse and the grocery store—ensuring optimal freshness, peak flavour and a longer shelf-life for the product.

With a wealth of experience between them, master growers Ian Adamson and Alice Farris are the unassuming power houses behind Greenbelt’s success.

Greenbelt_Ian AdamsonMaster Grower, Ian Adamson

Greenbelt’s focus on sustainability and achieving optimal efficiencies, is evident in all aspects of their operation—from their “grow-to-order” crop production schedule, to their environmental control system, their circular irrigation system, their robotics and their lighting system.

Lettuce, along with other leafy green crops, is a long day plant. So, low ambient light levels in the winter months and on cloudy days, makes supplemental lighting essential for producing high-quality, uniform greens year-round.

Since both Alice and Ian are extremely knowledgeable about horticultural lighting, they were very particular about the requirements for a new LED lighting system when they were looking to retrofit the existing LED lighting, installed by the previous owner of the greenhouse.

They ultimately selected P.L. Light Systems’ HortiLED Top 2.0 luminaires, in the Red White Medium Blue (RWMB) spectrum. One feature of the HortiLED 2.0 that they particularly liked, was the linear profile that allowed for easy mounting beneath the greenhouse truss and doesn’t create any shadowing on the crop. The high-efficiency RWMB spectrum (which is optimized for supplementary lighting applications) has also proved ideal for Greenbelt. They have found that the RWMB spectrum, in combination with the complementary natural sunlight in the greenhouse, has enhanced the pigmentation of their red leaf lettuce cultivars. They have also found that the proportion of white light in this spectral recipe is enough to allow for their employees to work comfortably in the greenhouse, without causing any strain on their eyes.

GreenbeltBaby kale being grown under the HortiLED Top 2.0 luminaires.

Since installing the HortiLED Top 2.0’s, Greenbelt has experience increased yields and faster crop turnovers. Aside from the performance of the luminaires, Greenbelt has also been very pleased with the local service and support from P.L. Light Systems.

When asked what advice she would pass on to other growers considering a new lighting system, Alice recommended they educate themselves as much as possible on horticultural lighting. They should know what data to look for in any given manufacturer’s light plan, how to interpret that data and understand how it relates to their particular situation. It’s also important to check the actual performance of the lighting system once installed vs. the anticipated performance from the light plan. In Greenbelt’s case, they were happy to find that the actual performance of their HortiLED Top 2.0 installation matched exactly what was presented in P.L. Light Systems’ light plan.

Greenbelt is eagerly anticipating the final phase of their lighting retrofit, scheduled to be complete before the start of the 2023/24 lighting season.

Greenbelt Greenbelt Product
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