The Research Station for Vegetable Production has more than 50 years of experience (°1963) in research on the cultivation of greenhouse and field vegetables. It is located at Sint-Katelijne- Waver, in the center of one of the most important production regions of fresh vegetables in Flanders (Belgium). It is a non-governmental and a non-profit organization.
Through its applied research, PSKW creates a link between the fundamental scientific research carried out at universities and the growers. The experience in field and semi-field trials and dissemination activities, combined with the close contact with growers guarantees innovation: the implementation of (best) practices and new technologies at the farms.
Growers are informed through open days, the website (www.proefstation.be), its own magazine “Proeftuinnieuws” and that of the growers association “Management&Techniek”, study events organized by the study clubs of the growers association, nine crop-specific technical advisory committees and the close collaboration with the sector.
The research facilities consist of a greenhouse (°2006) of 1,3 ha with 23 independent compartments where among others tomatoes, lettuce, sweet pepper, cucumber and zucchini are grown.
More than 10 ha of fields are available for field vegetable trials on among others leek, cauliflower, leafy vegetables, asparagus, cabbages, zucchini, etc.
The research topics are:
- IPM – crop protection
- Energy and climate steering
- Cultural techniques
- Quality and storage
- Innovative growing systems
- Waste management
- Food safety
- Mechanization, automation and ergonomics
The Research Station for Vegetable Production is involved in several national and international projects, aiming to bring useful knowledge and research results to the Flemish growers. It participates in H2020-projects like “SWEEPER”, “FERTINNOWA” and “C-RootControl”. The research station is founding member of EUVRIN, the European Vegetable Research Institute Network.
Beside research activities, the research station offers technical consultancy to growers of lettuce, zucchini, endive, celery, mâche, leek and small greenhouse crops.
The laboratory performs analyses of NO3–, NH4+, pH and EC on samples of soil, water and leafy vegetables. The analyses on soil samples are used for advice on fertilization in soil bound greenhouse and field vegetable crops, which is also a service of the research station.
Through its membership of the CVBB, the research station also offers technical support on sustainable fertilization and water use.
The warning system for diseases and plagues helps growers of open field vegetables to implement IPM strategies into their growing system.
Visit the PSKW website to learn more about their activities!
During the tour we will visit the trials in the greenhouses and in the field. In the greenhouses: tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and lettuce; outdoor: asparagus, cauliflower, leek, all other cabbage crops, leaf crops, etc. We will focus on crop protection but other topics such as variety research, lighting, energy saving, cultivation techniques, cultivation systems, automation (GPS technology in field vegetables) etc. will also be discussed during the tour. More information is given in the leaflet attached.
Visit tour of the greenhouses and in the field
Departure @ PSKW
Visit and Dinner in the city of Mechelen