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High-tech greenhouses yield bountiful blueberry harvests

By Li Jiaying | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2024-04-03 13:46

[Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

At the Shangshantang substrate blueberry base of Shangshantang in Weihai, Shandong province, the plump and round blueberries are covered with a layer of misty white fruit frost, resembling large indigo pearls.

"We use a nutrient solution instead of nutrients in the soil, and a mixture of peat, coconut husk and perlite as the growth medium for blueberries. By breaking away from the limitations of soil, we can precisely control the intake of substances needed for plant growth," said Gao Yong, production manager of the blueberry base, adding that the growth rate is two to three times faster than in soil, effectively improving yield and quality.

The entire greenhouse is equipped with intelligent drip irrigation, spray irrigation and temperature and humidity control systems. Through precise control, every blueberry can receive sufficient water and nutrients, nurturing the blueberries throughout their growth process, Gao said.

Cutting-edge high-tech is also applied at the base. With a few taps on the phone, real-time data on the pH value, water content and environmental temperature of the blueberry substrate soil can be received.

"During the maturation period, the optimal temperature for blueberry growth is between 23 and 28 C. After setting standard data in advance, when the actual temperature is slightly higher or lower, the 5G IoT 'smart brain' will issue instructions for automatic temperature control to ensure normal growth of the blueberries," he said. "With the intelligent equipment, one worker can supervise five greenhouses."

The "smart brain" was first used in more than ten blueberry greenhouses and achieved fruiting in the same year. Now, it is the picking period for the first batch of blueberries at Shangshantang. Each greenhouse has more than 400 seedlings, with an expected yield of over 5,000 kilograms.


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