Nutrient Management in Protected Cropping in the Middle East and in European Mediterranean Countries.
Keywords: Protected crops, Greenhouses, Detached beds, Fertigation, Recirculation, Salination.
The Mediterranean basin and the Middle East are regarded as the birthplace of the human civilization. The mild winter climate, the low annual rainfall, the long and dry summer and the large percentage of desert area, required the development of irrigated agriculture to guarantee an adequate food supply for the inhabitants, from the early days of land cultivation. Technological innovations in the second half of the 20th century triggered the regional introduction of growing cash crops under protected conditions. On the eve of the 21st century, the estimated area of protected crops in that region was 500,000 ha. Protected cropping may increase from two to ten-fold the yield per unit area, compared with open field cropping. This technology makes possible the production of off-season high-value vegetables for local consumption and for export. The substantial increase in profitability from protected cropping not only raised the standard of living of the farmers but of the whole neighbouring population. Adequate crop nutrition is a prerequisite for full exploitation of the high yield and top quality potential of protected cropping. Fertigation technologies and optimal fertilisation schedules were developed and adjusted to the variety of crops, growing substrates and protection technologies. Integrated monitoring, control and automation systems enable the efficient use of land, water and fertilisers and minimise damage to the environment.
Moshe Sne, Consultant, Kfar Saba, Israel.
18 Pages, 1 Figure, 28 References.
Nutrient Management in Protected Cropping in Turkey.
Keywords: Turkish horticulture, Protected Cropping, Nutrient management, Environmental problems.
At present, protected cultivation has a special significance in the agriculture of Turkey occupying approximately 42,000 ha, of which plastic and glass greenhouses account for 50% of the total covered land. Vegetables are produced in 95% of the greenhouses, ornamentals in 4% and in the remainder fruits and seedling are cultivated. In the majority of the conventional greenhouses, there is no regular heating system and short season crop production is preferred. Cultivation is almost entirely soil based, and with this type of protected system, fertilisation in accordance with soil analysis is very rare. A base fertilisation programme is used during soil preparation and is followed by fertigation. In modern commercial greenhouses, fertigation is the main nutrition system. Excess fertiliser use is a very common problem, in particularly with the conventional greenhouses, but for the time being there is no threat to water quality.
Dilek AnaÃƒÂ§ and Nevin EryÃƒÂ¼ce, Ege University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Soil Sciences, 35100 Bornova, Izmir, Turkey.
17 Pages, 8 Figures, 6 Tables, 11 References.