Better fruit colouring and more nutritional compounds

9 October 2020
Apple and pomegranate are two of the most common crops globally. The high consumption and the competition on the market require a massive production, aware of all the risks that could affect quality. Sunburns, uneven colouring, and invasive species are the dangers that producers face in the cultivation of these two crops. On the other hand, consumers are increasingly demanding products with high qualitative, nutritional and sensory properties. 

Mulching of the soil generally offers several obvious advantages. Specifically, the white reflective groundcovers are specially designed to help colour the fruits and give the plants more light. The reflected light also interferes with insect sight and reduces the presence of invasive species. Finally, it affects the physical characteristics of fruits and stimulates the synthesis of important compounds such as antioxidants."At Arrigoni, the search for innovative solutions for crops such as apple and pomegranate is a priority and, today, we are able to guarantee a particularly wide range, capable of meeting the needs of different areas and climatic zones" explains Milena Poledica, agronomist from Arrigoni.Thanks to its experience as a leader in the design and production of agrotextiles, Arrigoni offers Agritela Lux©, a reflective mulching fabric designed to improve colouring of fruits, making it more homogeneous.

Agritela Lux© by Arrigoni provides the best results with clones and varieties that have difficulty in developing colour, such as apple and pomegranate, because they are grown under anti-hail nets or in areas with a low temperature range between day and night.The secret is in the special additives that make up these groundcovers, stabilized to UV rays, and able to reflect over 70% of the photosynthetically active sunlight providing more light in the lower and inner parts of the plant's canopy. As for apples, this translates into better colouring of varieties such as Galaxy, Kanzi, Pink Lady©, Pinova, Gala Schniga and 25% more marketable fruit, as evidenced by field tests conducted by Arrigoni. The fabric is UV stabilized, easy to install and can be used season after season.Strong lateral reinforcements and the high-quality material that makes up Agritela Lux© allow the installation of the fabric with hooks and clips for perfect laying on the ground. In addition, this groundcover withstands the passage of machines. Pomegranate can also benefit from the use of Agritela Lux©.

To obtain a double advantage – greater protection from weeds, keeping the benefits given by the reflection of sunlight – Arrigoni proposes "Agritela Black and White", that is a two-tone mulching fabric, white on the surface and black on the side in contact with the ground. The main effect of the black-white combination is in fact to make it possible, at the same time, a higher protection from weeds (black side) and maintain the supply of additional light to the plants (white side), for a better colouring of fruits and a higher content of nutritional compounds.
In addition to the action of Agritela Lux©, Arrigoni also offers an effective defence against hail for the apple trees thanks to Fructus©, range of monofilament nets.Colour is a very important parameter when choosing nets. Depending on the variety and the geographical area of cultivation, it is necessary to use the right percentage of shading. In regions where there is not enough sun and for crops that require a high percentage of sun, transparent nets are recommended; on the contrary, in sunny places and on less vigorous orchards, the black net is more suitable, to ensure a better shading factor and reduce the damage caused by burns.

For pomegranate, on the other hand, after a detailed research on nets of different colours and different shading factors in relation to how they modify the environment (humidity, temperature, quality of light), the Arrigoni research department suggests Robuxta LDF White© thermo-reflective screen: the ideal solution between the shade required and the conditions necessary for colouring and the ripening process.There are several advantages that this choice can produce: the white colour of the screen reflects part of the sun's rays, responsible for sunburns; the additive in the screen diffuses the light evenly and stimulates the ripening and colouring process; the temperature under the screen is reduced, to the full benefit of the plant.

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