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High-tech indoor horticulture

To date, control measures to mitigate broccolini root and leaf diseases (such as club root and white blister, respectively) are largely ineffective or offer only partial resistance, resulting in considerable wastage and a major problem for growers. The effectiveness of different substrates in supporting clean plant growth, mitigating disease and improving profitability are not well understood. Moreover, alternate production systems to extend the growing season in broccolini have not yet been investigated. This project supports Perfection Fresh in seeking solutions that address pathogen-related broccolini wastage and decreased yield as well as the limited growing season of a highly sought-after, high-value crop. The project team is testing different applications’ capacity to simultaneously reduce infection rates and maintain plant nutrient flow into the development of inflorescences and the main broccolini product. In particular, the team is focused on adapting these technologies to broccolini production as alternative means to improving soil health and managing plant pathogens.