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Shade nets and why they are important in today’s farming

Shade nets are made from lightweight knitted polythene fabric that provides people and plants with protection from the sun. Shade cloth fabric is available in densities ranging from 50% to 90% to suit the unique needs of different types of plants, flowers and crops. It can be used with greenhouses, hoop structures and in field applications. Additional uses include fences, windscreens and privacy barriers. Shade material is rot and mildew resistant, does not become brittle and is water permeable. It offers superior ventilation, improves light diffusion and keeps greenhouses cooler. As a result, shade cloth can help to lower energy costs by reducing the need to run fans as often in the warmer months. Installing shade net is quick and easy as is taking it down during the off-peak season.

Read: Reasons Why You Should Start an Agribusiness in Kenya Today

Reflective shade and how is it beneficial in a greenhouse

Reflective shade is beneficial since it helps to create an optimum growing climate because it reflects the sun’s radiation rather than absorbing it. It assists in controlling the light, temperature and humidity balance. Reflective shade screens are also energy-saving. Excellent climate characteristics include low daytime temperature due to maximum reflection and high energy savings at night, which keeps crop temperature close to ambient.

Difference between standard shade net and reflective shade nets

Standard shade net is an affordable, extremely durable means of protecting plants and crops from direct sunlight. Shade net is placed on the exterior roof of a greenhouse, cold frame or high tunnel where it blocks a percentage of light from penetrating the building, hence keeping plants more comfortable. This type of shade material is appropriate for general gardening, farming and greenhouse applications and is widely used in the commercial farming and gardening industry.

Read: How Many Years Will It Take To Get Returns On Invested Capital Under Hass Avocado Farming

Recommended shade Net Material to use

Shade nets are of various materials and what to use depends on the type of your crop. The shade materials help in protecting plants, pets, livestock and people from direct sunlight and also works as a windscreen. Depending on the climatic conditions also, growers use 50% and 60% density in colder areas while in hotter areas, they use 70% to 80%. Many farmers find that using a high-density shade on roofs and a lower density shade on walls is a good method for creating ideal shade conditions. Farmers should check with their local Agricultural Extension office to determine the shade cloth density that is appropriate for both the climate and plant variety.

Why shade percentage is important

The density of the shade is determined by the amount of the light blocked by the shade. For instance, the definition of 80% shade is that only 20% of light passes through it. Vegetables require a shade percentage of between 30 and 50 %.

Read: How to write a business plan for your agribusiness venture/dairy farming/horticultural farming

Advantages of shade net:

  • It is easy to wash
  • Do not get Decay
  • Nets are easy to carry and easy to install
  • Easy to relocate
  • A shade percentage of 30-50% is ideal for vegetables and flowers.
  • They are ideal for gardens, plant nurseries, home terrace gardening.
  • Minimizes plant hassle and wind pressures to avoid damage to plants, enhances photosynthesis to stimulate plant growth.
  • Conserves water
  • Protects plants from pests and diseases

If you can afford green houses, think shade nets and you will save yourself a fortune.

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As A Farmer You Can Control Pests Through Shade Nets

Just like human beings control spread of Malaria through usage of nets, the same protection mechanism applies to plants, which, like human beings are not only exposed to diseases transmitted by insects, but also to direct damages as many pests feed on them. Farmers know the seriousness of this which can lead to total losses.

What is Shade Net?

A shade Net is a family of clear netting products developed for use in horticulture (vegetables, fruit and ornamentals). Shade Net was developed to control pests with the aim to significantly reduce quantities of pesticides. Shade Net products provide farmers with affordable alternatives to generally expensive conventional protected cultivation in greenhouses or tunnels.

Shade nets is a framed structure that partially control atmosphere and environments by reducing light intensity and effective heat during day time to crop grown under it. Hence round the year seasonal and off-season cultivation is possible.

Shade net is a crucial equipment for farming out here who want to venture into tin cultivation of flower plants, foliage plants, medicinal and aromatic plant, vegetables and spices as well as raising nurseries of fruits and vegetables. Shade nets also protect against pest attack and natural weather disturbances such as wind, rain, hail, frost, snow, bird and insect.

Read: What you require while establishing successful pig farming

Shade Nets are a cost-effective and safe way to protect crops from caterpillars and leaf miners in particular as well as birds and heavy rain. Shade Net act as physical barriers that deny pests (Lepidoptera and leaf miners) access to the crop, delay other pest infestation (white flies, aphids) and offer protection against cold, wind, hailstones and heavy rains. Shade Net is not only recommended for cabbage and French beans. Shade Nets are also having a good effect on tomato crops and on the production of vegetable/fruit seedlings in the nursery.

Read: Best Practices And What To Consider Before Farming Tomatoes

Shade nets help in creating favorable micro environment for production of vermin compost which plays a major role in improving growth and yield of different field crops, vegetables and fruit crops.