First clean, then disinfect

A good, healthy and productive crop begins with a clean and hygienic greenhouse. Never underestimate the importance of a strict hygiene protocol. Cleaning and disinfecting a greenhouse must be done absolutely perfectly to ensure you have a good crop with the maximum yield. 

Avoid premature inactivation

The general rule in all cases is first to clean and deal with any algae present, and then start disinfecting. Without cleaning first, most disinfectants will be broken down almost immediately by contact with organic material, leading to premature inactivation. It also means that the surface under the contamination will not be effectively disinfected, leading to a greater risk of infections in the next crop.

What type of contamination?

Start with identifying what type of contamination is present and which organisms have to be dealt with, and then choose the most appropriate agent. When selecting a cleaning agent, it is best to check whether the contamination is mineral or organic. Lime scale and rust are examples of mineral contamination and are most easily cleaned with an acidic agent. Proteins and fats are organic contamination that are best cleaned with alkali soaps.

What needs to be disinfected?

After everything has been properly cleaned, the next choice of the most suitable disinfectant is very important. If only preventing or dealing with bacteria is needed, then there is a wide range of agents available. Viruses or resting spores of fungi are more difficult to treat, and only a few agents can do that. When choosing the right cleaning agent and disinfectant, take into account the presence of plants and personnel, light, acidity, temperature, humidity, etc. The method of applying the available agents ensures the effectiveness of the cleaning and disinfecting.

Houweling Horticulture specialises in cleaning and disinfecting

Houweling Horticulture has specialised in cleaning and disinfecting greenhouses for many years. We are happy to help you by answering all your questions about cleaning and disinfecting inside your company, which agents would be best to use and how to apply them best. Please contact us.