Firmer fruits and extended shelf life with Greenstim

Promoting firmer fruits and prolonged shelf life, our powerful new osmoregulator, Greenstim, is generating plenty of interest among berry growers in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Containing 97% glycine betaine, a natural extract from sugar beet, Greenstim (produced by Lallemand Plant Care) helps crops deal with a wide range of stresses. Treated plants benefit from improved protection from extreme conditions, such as draught and temperature changes as well as salt and water stresses.  

How does it work?

Easy to apply, through a single foliar spray, Greenstim accumulates in plant cells and ensures better water and nutrient management - including calcium mobilization. This osmoregulator improves photosynthesis and fortifies cell walls during osmotic stress, resulting in greater fruit weight and longer shelf life. Within 24 hours of application, Greenstim penetrates through the plant surface and is distributed through the plant and makes it able to cope with stress conditions for 3-4 weeks.  

Outcome of grower trial

Fruit producer André Hennissen took part in Biobest trials last autumn in his raspberry crop - grown in tunnels at his Limburg nursery, in the Netherlands.

"Raspberries can soften and deteriorate rapidly after storage, with shelf life limited due to fungal decay caused by grey mould and Rhizopus rot," explains Marlies Vleugels, Biobest Researcher.  

The trial began late season with the first spray treatment (2kg/ha), at the beginning of October and the second three weeks later.  The berries were harvested at the beginning of November. Subsequent shelf life trials were carried out at Biobest’s Greenlab, with fruits stored at 4°C and high humidity.
"The results showed berries from plants treated with Greenstim had a longer shelf life with less fruit infected by fungal diseases," says Marlies.

According to André Hennissen, who took part in the harvesting, treated fruits were noticeably firmer.

Lemmen Aardbeien, at Molenheg in the Netherlands applied Greenstim in their greenhouse grown strawberry crop in autumn.

"During dark periods, from the end of October, strawberries are prone to cracking," explains Peter Lemmen. "In the past I’ve tried adapting the calcium fertilization in dark periods to minimise the problem." 

Greenstim was applied to half the crop in both greenhouses at the beginning of September, and repeated three weeks later.  Applications were made at the same time as powdery mildew controls.

Commenting on the outcome, Peter said: "In 2015 we experienced dark periods in autumn. Although we did not collect quantitative data as to the differences in cracking levels, pickers working in the crop spontaneously noticed the difference between the treated and non-treated areas. I’m impressed by the results and shall be using Greenstim across the whole crop this autumn."

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