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International Horticulture and Management Programme

Bachelor for International Horticulture and Management Programme
Markos, Octavian

University of Applied Sciences, CAH Dronten


The importance of irrigation

and fertilizers for the strawberry
variety Sweet Eve

Markos Octavian
Dronten, 28/08/2014
International Horticultural Management
University of Applied Sciences, CAH Dronten

The doctrines presented in this document are the exclusive

responsibility of the author

I Abstract
The present paper was conducted on behalf of Hall Hunter Partnership and presents the
use of irrigation on a variety of strawberry plants (Sweet Eve), created and developed by Edward
Vinson. Sweet Eve is an important variety for Hall Hunter Partnership, being grown on many
fields for its great quality, high yield and shelf life.
This study had as purpose to track, monitor and evaluate the dynamics of nutrient uptake
by strawberry plants grown under field conditions, storage and remobilization by soilless and soil
grown plants. The portioning and uptake of nutrients were determined by successive analysis sets
of water, substrate material, soil samples and parts of plant organs of the grown variety. The
analysis samples were taken at different developing stages, following the evolution of the main
nutrients and elements used for the present strawberry plant. The content and uptake of minerals
in the samples were monitored to have a better understanding about the feeding requirements of
this variety (Sweet Eve).
It was very important to follow and maintain the EC and pH levels within target limits, be
aware of the deficiencies or lack of uptake by the plants, adjusting the fertilizers used so there
would be efficient use of the resources. The quality of the water used is also very important,
monitoring the drip-in and out sum to be in the proper limits required for growing the crop, using
the water resources in an efficient way.
Seeking the optimum requirements and characteristics necessary to obtain the best
results, the influence of the irrigation method, nutrients and local conditions, it is important to
see which method of growing is more efficient growing on soil or growing on substrate.
Before being enrolled at the International Horticulture and Management Course I was
aware of plant sciences in a broad sense, but my previous studies do not overlap completely with
the ones from CAH Vilentum.
It was a chance for me, by taking part in this course, to find out more about this important
domain for our society.
Plant nutrition is a new topic and field of activity for me, having the placement at Hall
Hunter Partnership represents a very good opportunity to see how activities take place in soft
fruit production. I consider it is an important domain for The United Kingdom and also because
it is a growing market.
It was a challenge for me, I tried my best to make everything understandable as easy as
possible to read through, even for the ones who do not know much about this field to understand
the essence about the important factors for growing soft fruit.
Maybe something new is yet to be discovered, future research having the potential of
leading to a conclusion.

II Acknowledgments
This paper is the result of a collaboration with Hall Hunter Partnership, having access directly to
data and also contributing to gathering information in hopes to find relevant results for the
benefit of the company.
Staff members also guided the procedures and process that made this report be what it is right
now, answering questions and giving information of great importance whenever needed.
Gratitude towards to Irrigation Department members of the farm for their time and patience, also
to all department members of this farm and members of higher departments within the company.
Being a recently introduced variety and not a great amount of information is available when it
comes to Sweet Eve, but on a short term the results can offer an answer to an important question,
in order to obtain better yields and therefore better margins.
Having for the first time access to this new to this domain, it was tried to find the best results
possible with all the availabilities, giving it a coherent form and trying to achieve a positive
outcome. Working first with the Irrigation Department in a big farm has changed the views and
perspectives of soft fruit production.
Kind regards to CAH Vilentum Dronten for the opportunity to be part of their program, reaching
new boundaries and going beyond any perceivable expectations.
Last but not least, I would like to thank my family for their continuous and unconditional moral
support. I wouldnt be anywhere without you.

III Table of Contents


Table of Contents
Index of table
Index of table
Index of graphics
Introduction ...
Description of the soft fruit production at Hull Hunter
The Strawberry Plant: Anatomy and Morphology ..
Frost Protection
Research Questions and Approach
Research methodology and setting
Drip irrigation..
The Essential Elements in Plant Nutrition.
Leaf analysis .
Soil pH...
Irrigation availability.
Sweet eve ..
Implementation of the research.
Coir compost substrate..
Drip ..
Growing degree hours GDH..
Electrical conductivity EC.
Run off
Hydrogen ion level - pH...

IV Index of table

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Table 1
Table 2
Table 3
Table 4
Table 5
Table 6
Table 7
Table 8
Table 9
Table 10
Table 11
Table 12
Table 13
Table 14
Table 15

Critical temperatures (Celsius degrees) for cold damage of flower

buds depending on development stage..
Provide information about the names
Major nutrients and role
Secondary nutrients and role .
Micronutrients and role..
Leaf analysis standard ...
Positive and negative niches on Sweet Eve....
The characteristics of source water .
B-compost summary analysis.
A- Fresh compost summary analysis
Soil analisys ..
Drip comparison between field A and B
Set of guiding ....
Suitable run-off percentrages depending on the development stage.
Efficiency of water use between March 25 and June 6..

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V Index of figures
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Location of West Sussex

Geology of West Sussex marking the area of interest
Location of the farm
The strawberry plant
Arrangement of strawberry blossoms on fruit truss
Sweet Eve berry
Studied areas within the farm
Nutrient sufficiency for strawberries
Proper range for soil pH and nutrient availability
Light blue position of the two water reservoirs within the farm
Green irrigation working area
Irrigation of the soil beds
Sweet Eve (a)
Sweet Eve (b)
Typical bag for coir compost or soil sample
Typical bag for keeping the leaf sample

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VI. Index of chaters

Chater 2
Chater 3
Chater 4
Chater 5
Chater 6
Chater 7
Chater 8
Chater 9
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Chater 11
Chater 12
Chater 13
Chater 14
Chater 15
Chater 16
Chater 17

B Compost analisys
A Compost analisys
Compost analisys comparison
Soil-Compost analisys
Comparison between macroelement content of the drip in and drip
out for field B
Comparison between macroelement content of the drip in and drip
out for field A
pH value comparison for fields A / B
EC value comparison for fields A and B
GDH growth
Leaf analisys B
Leaf analisys A
Leaf analisys C
Leaf analisys E
Drip and runoff interpretation for filed B
Average water
Percentage of total plants per field

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