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Leyva R.,Institute of Research and Training in Agriculture and Fisheries | Leyva R.,University of Granada | Constan-Aguilar C.,University of Granada | Sanchez-Rodriguez E.,University of Granada | And 2 more authors.
Biosystems Engineering | Year: 2015

Mediterranean climates are characterised by summer temperatures that exceed 35°C, high solar radiation~30MJm-2, relative humidity<20% at around midday, and limited water resources generating yield loss in crops. For this reason, new climate strategy for greenhouses used in Mediterranean climates has been developed to avoid plant injury. Cherry tomato plants were assessed during 2010 and 2011 under different environmental conditions, namely in a screenhouse (S), in a screenhouse equipped with a fogging system (SF) and in a screenhouse with a plastic sheeting to maintain the microclimate created by the fogging system (SFS). SFS improved microclimatic conditions during the 2010 and 2011 growing seasons by, reducing incident radiation 37% and 30%, respectively while increasing relative humidity by 20% and 16%, respectively and respect to S lowering the vapour pressure deficit. These adjustments in microclimate could moderate the extremes of microclimate during the summer, avoiding episodes of physiological stress that affect yield and final quality. The dry mass vegetables plants parts grown under SFS increased while the marketable mass per plant was not significantly different. This was due to 45% increased in mean tomato fruit mass in 2010 and by 20% in 2011. Although tomato leaves grown under SFS registered the lowest values in foliar temperature, they showed the highest values for LAI, SLA, and LAR. It was concluded that a fogging could improve the climatic conditions under screenhouse and extend the growing season during adverse environmental conditions. © 2014 IAgrE.


Leyva R.,Institute of Research and Training in Agriculture and Fisheries | Leyva R.,University of Granada | Constan-Aguilar C.,University of Granada | Blasco B.,University of Granada | And 4 more authors.
Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture | Year: 2014

BACKGROUND: The quality of vegetables for fresh consumption is a complex issue. In this study the yield and quality of cherry tomato fruits were assessed under different environmental control conditions, namely in a screenhouse (S), in a screenhouse equipped with a fogging system (SF) and in a screenhouse with complements such as plastic sheeting to maintain the microclimate created by the fogging system (SFS), as well as under open field (OF) cultivation. Levels of vitamin C, carotenoids (lycopene, β-carotene and lutein), phenolic compounds (flavonoids and phenolic acids), sugars (fructose, glucose and sucrose), organic acids (citric acid and malic acid) and flavour indices were measured. The aim of the study was to determine how different environmental control technologies could influence production and quality traits in tomato cherry fruits cultivated in a Mediterranean area. RESULTS: The results showed that the fogging system treatment's decline in maximum vapour pressure deficit (by 0.7 kPa compared with OF cultivation), increase in mean fruit weight (by about 4 g per fruit) and low radiation and temperature values may exert a positive effect on lycopene accumulation. CONCLUSION: For the production and nutritional parameters measured, it is postulated that the fogging system treatment offers a better balance between production and nutritional quality. This treatment proved to be best in terms of productivity, vitamin C and lycopene contents and antioxidant capacity. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.

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