We’re all looking for technologies that can help us do things smarter, and that includes growing crops in controlled environment agriculture (CEA) systems. Whether cultivated in a greenhouse or an indoor farm, different plants need different conditions at various growth stages for optimal growth and development. Managing the variations in lighting, temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide (CO2), and fertilizer needed for each species or cultivar can be daunting. Fortunately, artificial intelligence (AI) is helping growers to monitor conditions for different plant zones and to provide more precise control of inputs.

The use of dynamic lighting illustrates the potential for this technology. With dynamic lighting, the light intensity can be modulated based on crop needs as well as changing environmental conditions, such as day length and fluctuations in natural light levels. In addition, the light spectrum can be adjusted to fine-tune growth, nutritional quality, and taste. For example, a high red-to-blue ratio will improve leaf growth and stem elongation, while a low red-to-blue ratio will promote thicker leaves. The ideal light spectrum will vary depending on the plants’ growth stage and desired outcomes.

On January 25 and 26, 2024, CEA growers will have the opportunity to learn strategies for using dynamic growing practices to improve the quality and yield of their ornamental and food crops. The Ohio State University’s Greenhouse Management Workshop, which is held annually, brings together experts in industry and academia to provide practical, science-based information. This year’s workshop will be held at the Wooster Campus, with a virtual option, and will focus on the theme “Dynamic Growing.”

Read more at ocj.com