165S64L: Ellepot Lettuce Air Tray®
This Air Tray® holds lettuce transplants grown in Ellepots for transplanting with the TTS automatic field transplanter. This new system is designed to replace peat block lettuce transplants that have dominated lettuce propagation in Northern Europe for many years.
The main features and benefits are:
- The automatic field transplanter reduces field labour by up to 80%, which is a huge cost saving.
- Ellepot lettuce plants have been scientifically proven to grow as well as in a peat block, unlike any other alternative propagation system.
- Proptek’s new 165 injection moulded Air Tray® is designed to fit into current
peat block nursery set ups with minimal changes.
- Ellepots can use non peat materials such as coir, helping to meet the drive
away from peat usage in horticulture.
- Excellent drainage so the Ellepots will not waterlog like a peat block.
- Raised legs to enable air root pruning.
- Air vent holes encourage strong leaf development and reduce humidity.
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- How much labour can the farm save?
Transplanting labour should reduce by up to 80%.
- How fast will the transplanter go?
There are many options but the basic unit speed is up to 8,000 plants per row / hour. See www.transplantingservices.com for more information.
- Are you sure the Ellepot will perform as well as a peat block?
Yes, unlike module trays or plant tape, plant nutrition and development is very similar. We even got this proven by Stockbridge Technology Centre (Click here to see report).
- What changes are required to my peat block propagation setup?
The tray is the same outer dimension as a peat block tray and its handle is in a very similar position so should be compatible with existing peat block tray machinery. Internal transport can also be done using the same system as peat blocks.
- What about my other crops such as celery or leeks?
These will work very well in this system with similar labour reductions. Compared to plant tape a major benefit is automatic gapping up on the transplanter, which gives 100% stand even with lower germination crops.
- How flexible is the transplanter?
TTS have many format options to suit different farms’ tracked units, such as self propelled, tractor drawn, etc.
- Can we stop using peat?
Yes, Ellepots are often used with peat substitutes such as coir.
- Is this similar to plant tape?
No, for the following reasons:
- Much lower plant density used in propagation (similar to blocks).
- Planted at the same age as blocks (Plant Tape older).
- Gapping up possible in the field transplanter.
- Ellepots establish faster in the field i.e the same as peat blocks.
- The crop develops the same as in peat blocks, with similar
harvest and yield.
In short, this is the closest alternative propagation system to peat
blocks with all the additional labour saving benefits.
The Ellepot Lettuce Air Tray® system is a collaboration between Proptek, Ellepot, TTS and Crystal Heart Salad Company.
Plants will be produced and planted in the UK in the 2021 season, to demonstrate all aspects of this unique proposition.
For further information please contact Paul Greenley at Proptek: email@example.com