Greenhouse farming involves the cultivation of crops in conditions that are manually controlled and not subject to the erratic changes of weather. The technology helps to develop crops and enhance productivity under ideal conditions. This type of farming helps to grow out-of-season crops as well as crops that are not seasonal. Some of these superior quality products include vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, sweetcorn, lettuce, root vegetables, fruits like strawberries as well as flowers like Dutch rose and carnations.
Did you know?
Greenhouse technology was started in the 1980s in India, but it was used only for activities related to research?
What is Greenhouse Farming?
The technology used in greenhouse farming creates conditions that are feasible for the healthy growth of plants. This enables a flourishing growth of floricultural crops across the twelve months of the year. The technology also makes use of the required amount of pesticides or chemicals in the most practical and efficient manner. This helps to protect the crops and keep them free of pests as well as ailments and maintain their healthy growth at all times. One of the most striking features of this type of farming is that it requires very small amounts of water.
How to Start a Greenhouse Farming Business in India?
Greenhouse farming involves the growing of crops and fruits under human-controlled conditions. It involves setting up boundaries for the growth of healthy plants which are not dependent on Nature. A greenhouse, also known as a glasshouse, consists of a structure that is covered with a material that could be translucent or transparent. The warm sunlight passes through the glasshouse and the warmth is retained inside such a closure. This enables the crops to grow well. The structure of a greenhouse depends on the requirements of the individuals as well as the latitude of that area. There are different types of structures and these are dependent upon the scale of the business. Greenhouse farming assures you of a quality and increased yield of crops throughout the year. You can enjoy immense growth across the crops you cultivate.
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How to Set Up a Greenhouse Farm?
Greenhouse farming assures you of healthy products and maximum productivity. One of the key essentials is to understand the various aspects of this house farming. From the technical aspects that involve the technology and its working to the marketing as well as the economic returns, you need to be thoroughly familiarised with it all. There are many individuals who get confused between polyhouse and greenhouse farming. The only difference is that polyhouse farming uses polyethylene to construct the greenhouse. This makes the construction highly durable. Greenhouses are classified on the basis of structure, construction, materials, and ventilation.
- Sawtooth structure
- Ground to ground structure
- Sawtooth structure
- Quonset structure
- Interlocking structure
- Uneven structure
- Furrow and Ridge structure
- Wood-based construction frames
- Pipe-based construction frames
Overhead Protective Cover
- Glass covering
- Plastic covering
- Natural – dependent on natural conditions like sunlight
- Climate control – this is a totally controlled process
Key Factors for the Selection of the Premises
- The area should be free of insects and other pests
- Drainage should be unobstructed
- Quality supply of water
- The pH range of the soil should be between 6 and 7. This measures the number of hydrogen ions in the soil. Anything below this lacks phosphorus, calcium as well as magnesium. When the pH range is between 6 and 7, it indicates the soil is nutrient-rich and this assures a healthy and productive yield.
- Your greenhouse should be easily accessible.
- The vicinity should have good constructed roads and ease of connectivity for you to be able to make the requisite deliveries on time.
- A focused selection of the type of crops – vegetables and fruits that you wish to cultivate
To start a greenhouse farming business, you need to create a practical feasibility report which should detail:
- Details about yourself
- The reason behind your requirement to set up a house farm
- The technical feasibility
- Analysis based on economies of scale
Loan for Investments
To obtain a loan, you will have to furnish accurate details of documents to complete the formalities. Some of these include:
- Your project details – a complete blueprint
- The premises on which you plan to set up – clearance report of the same
- The total investments you require – an approximate amount
- Details of the plants you plan to cultivate and the costs involved
- Irrigation details
- Detailed aspects on the water supply and quality of soil that you will use
- Agreement of purchase or rent
The government of India provides subsidies for greenhouse farming. This can be obtained from the department of horticulture. The subsidy amount varies between 50-60% of the entire cost of your house farming. To obtain the said subsidy amount, you will have to provide documentation details which include, the detailed report of your project, land clearance, whether purchased or rented as well as the letter that states details of the loan sanctioned by the bank.
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Details of Construction
Once you complete the documentation formalities successfully, your immediate concern will be that of constructing the greenhouse. A little research into the various construction companies will help you make the right choice after you check the quality of some of their projects. You can always ask for discounts on the costs.
Placing an Order for the Plants You Plan to Cultivate
First, you will have to be sure about which crops are in demand in the surrounding markets. You will have to study the productivity of these plants, and understand their growth in the climatic conditions in that area. You will have to be sure that they are free of all pests and unwelcome ailments. You will have to research the various plant nurseries, get an insight into the soil quality and various other details. Once you are sure they will give you a high yield, you can place an order based on your research. Most owners of plant nurseries are very accommodating and will be happy to furnish you with all the important details for taking care of the plants and maintaining a healthy growth of all the crops.
Promotion and Brand Building
This involves packing your produce well and marketing them to the targeted audiences. You can form alliances with established vendors or hire the services of a mediating agent who will help market your brand in other cities as well. There are many genuine mediating agents, and it is easy to connect with them by accessing their details online.
This article outlines the various requirements and formalities which need to be completed to start greenhouse farming in India. This type of farming does require investments but once you prove your ability in providing healthy produce at all times, it can reap optimal revenues for you.