Navsari Agricultural University
Introduction Of Green –House

After the advent of green revolution, more emphasis is laid on the quality of the product along with the quantity of production to meet the ever- growing food requirements. Both these demands can be met when the environment for the plant growth is suitably controlled. The need to protect the crops against unfavourable environmental conditions led to the development of protected agriculture. Greenhouse is the most practical method of achieving the objectives of protected agriculture, where the natural environment is modified by using sound engineering principles to achieve optimum plant growth and yields.

Green House

1.1 History

A greenhouse is a framed or an inflated structure covered with a transparent or translucent material in which crops could be grown under the conditions of at least partially controlled environment and which is large enough to permit persons to work within it to carry out cultural operations. The growing of off - season cucumbers under transparent stone for Emperor Tiberius in the 1st century, is the earliest reported protected agriculture. The technology was rarely employed during the next 1500 years. In the 16th century, glass lanterns, bell jars and hot beds covered with glass were used to protect horticultural crops against cold. In the 17th century, low portable wooden frames covered with an oiled translucent paper were used to warm the plant environment. In Japan, primitive methods using oil -paper and straw mats to protect crops from the severe natural environment were used as long ago the early 1960s. Greenhouses in France and England during the same century were heated by manure and covered with glass panes. The first greenhouse in the 1700s used glass on one side only as a sloping roof. Later in the century, glass was used on both sides. Glasshouses were used for fruit crops such as melons,
grapes, peaches and strawberries, and rarely for vegetable production. Protected agriculture was fully established with the introduction of polyethylene after the World War II. The first use of polyethylene as a greenhouse cover was in 1948, when professor Emery Myers Emmert, at the University of Kentucky, used the less expensive material in place of more expensive glass.

The total area of glasshouses in the world (1987) was estimated to be 30,000 ha and most of these were found in North- Western Europe. In contrast to glasshouses, more than half of the world area of plastic greenhouses is in Asia, in which China has the largest area. According to 1999 estimates, an area of 6,82,050 ha were under plastic greenhouses . In most of the countries, greenhouses are made of plastic and glass; the majority is plastic. Glasshouses and rigid plastic houses are longer-life structures, and therefore are most located in cold regions where these structures can be used throughout the year. In Japan, year-round use of greenhouses is becoming predominant, but in moderate and warm climate regions, they are still provisional and are only used in winter.

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