“I have been using the PolyFilm-Plus cover in a Pricia (apricot) orchard since 2018. For 4 years now, I’ve been able to arrive on the market more than 10 days earlier than the uncovered crops and with an extraordinary fruit quality, color and brix degree. All these results were obtained in a season marked by difficult thermal shocks, just like this year,” said Antonio Di Bari, a farmer from the province of Foggia, Apulia, who wanted to test Retilplast solutions, the Campania-based company that produces nets, films and tarpaulins ideal to defend and improve fruit and vegetable production.
Pricia variety – Di Bari farm
“The advantages of this particular film are many, but the one I value the most is the potential to save production when unpleasant weather events occur at the most delicate stages for the plant. The central ventilation corridor included in the cover allowed me to regulate the temperature and humidity inside the plant. Harvesting is already complete, and the thermoplastic film has been rolled up while waiting to reposition it before the plants germinate and before the next 2022 campaign.”
Polyfilm-Plus, (now called Polyfilm-Ultra) is a sheet that has high transparency and almost total diffused light, capable of providing a better microclimate and thermal comfort, as well as blocking plant thermal stresses.
“I still remember when the entrepreneur Di Bari trusted me both in the choice of the thermoplastic film and in the installation. We equipped the sheet both with the so-called POD Long lasting sheet (photo on the right), conceived to be folded at the end of the campaign by opening or closing manually the central corridor, to guarantee protection from sun and frost, and also regulate the temperature and the humidity of the plant. We also chose a 2-Z type of installation (photo below), since it could withstand whirlwinds and strong gusts of wind,” said Walter Ruggia of Retilplast.
2-Z installation prototype
The thermoplastic film is characterized by two sheets joined at the center by the anchoring hook (the rigid part of the system) and by an elastic material at the bottom (flexible part) of the latest technology, essential to keep the sheet always in tension and prevent it from tearing.