As a grower, or owner / manager of a nursery or garden centre, you face new challenges to your market position every day. Pressures from higher energy and labour costs coupled with lower prices for your crop continue to squeeze your margins.
Cheap imports have made matters worse, too, and there’s no sign of that changing any time soon. If you want to remain competitive, then you know that you’ll have to find ways to make better use of the resources that are available to you.
Glasshouses that maximize production and minimize the need for energy are a best choice.
We recommend the Venlo design, which has proved to be optimum for crops grown in the UK.
Automatic sensors can easily balance light, heat and ventilation. Thermal screens can protect plants from excessive temperatures during the day and then insulate them from cold at night. Netting protects healthy plants from the hungriest insects.
Challenges to become more efficient
You face challenges to become more efficient, too.
One way to meet them is by installing growing systems. This technology enables you to regulate water and nutrients, and to harvest crops faster.
Quality and yields are higher, too.
"The rainwater harvesting project we installed . . . has made a big difference to our strawberry growing business. We are not so reliant on our ground source water supply which is full of unwanted salts and has been detrimental to our crop.
"The use of rain water enables us to give our crop exactly the nutrients they require with a stable pH thus enhancing crop quality and yield.
"As a matter of course we contacted several companies for advice and prices for the job and ultimately concluded that a joint venture with New Leaf and GVZ Glasshouse[s] Ltd was the way forward. . .
"From my experience, the GVZ team are [a] very professional and reliable company to work with and would have no hesitation in recommending them to fellow growers".
Challenges to keep it all working
Your challenges do not end with a glasshouse with efficient technology. Regular maintenance is necessary to minimize downtime and lower replacement costs.
"I have used GVZ for all our grading and shrink wrapping machine maintenance requirements for many years now. I have used other companies in the past, but nobody provides the level of skill, commitment and attention to detail that they have shown.
"I also know that if I need something done as an emergency they will bend over backwards to get it done immediately and have no concerns about working unsociable hours to get things done at a time that suits us and not just them".
Marc Cannatella, Head of Operations
Glinwell Marketing Ltd
Challenges to find more space
Sandwich panels are an inexpensive and reliable way to put an insulated and leak-proof roof on an extension to your premises. You can even use them to line the walls of a new structure.
You can use this additional space for anything you want. Some customers use it for complementary products, such as decorative items, products for their pets, or conservatories, while others convert it into a tea shop or cafe.
"We visited another garden centre to get ideas on how we could improve our own site.
"Whilst out visiting we came across a centre that had their whole shop re-roofed. It was exactly what we were looking for, particularly as their frame structure was like ours (greenhouse).
"We asked the owners who they used and GVZ was recommended. We swiftly visited GVZ and met a very pleasant and accommodating team. They came to visit our visit site not long after and gave us some ideas on how we could tackle a monumental task of taking the whole roof off and fit a new one.
"Once we agreed the price (of which we were surprised and happy with) we gave them the go ahead. We initially did get a quote in from another company but they were at least 50% dearer!
"We arranged to have the roof fitted in two stages because of the busy season that was approaching, but we were still eager to get the job underway.
"The fitters were really nice chaps and also very accommodating to suit our business, and make everything easier as we still had the public coming in. They worked from bay to bay and progressed really well day to day. They were punctual and put in a hard day’s work.
"We decided to let them carry on and not wait for stage two to continue later in the year, whilst we were in turmoil we thought we should carry on and get the job finished in one go, of which we did.
"Communications was also very good from head office and site visits were often made to make sure everything was going to plan.
"Now the roof is all finished we cannot believe the difference in temperature within the shop. Not only is it cool in the summer, we are hoping that we will be able to maintain the heat in the winter. And what is paramount WE DO NOT GET ANY MORE LEAKS 🙂 so arranging stock in the shop is now far easier and we are not dodging the drips!
"I would highly recommend GVZ as a company, their work to detail is very good and finished off areas that we didn’t take into account, especially being able to clean the roof.
"Fighting to clean our gutters out is a thing of the past, and made it effortless 🙂 "