In the centre of the Flora and the Fauna of the Delta de L’Ebre in Spain, Deltacactus cultivates unique species of cactuses and succulents. There are many varieties of cactuses; they grow in all shapes and sizes from round and short through to thin and tall. The smallest are just a few centimetres high, the tallest cactus can reach heights up to 20m and close to 1 meter thick.
Deltacactus was established in 1982, and since then the company experienced that the optimum growing conditions of cactuses depend on a well-tailored combination between high knowledge, high technology and planning. In order to cultivate these unique plants, the family company invests time and energy in teamwork, knowledge sharing and production planning. As opposed to their former way of growing based on green fingers, they nowadays focus on “Data Driven Growing”, cultivation on the basis of data. Moreover, it is really important for the organisation to focus on the things that makes their employees happy in order to achieve new success in the future.
Deltacactus wants to create a happy living environment for international consumers as well. Therefore, to satisfy the needs and wishes and to create value for money for their customers, Deltacactus set up an important breeding program. Especially young people are excited about these plants, because of the minimum amount of water required. They feel at ease traveling worldwide, not worrying about the water balance of their plants at home. On top of that, these wonderful plants are more sustainable thanks to their low CO2 footprint.
Knowhow about the cactus species is rare, therefore exploring the natural environment of the cactus is essential. That’s why a trip to South Africa was made to learn from botanical knowledge of the plants, nature and to create new varieties. Together with breeders and growers in South Africa, the company carried out research relating to the nature of the plants, because some succulents are only growing in one place under specific conditions. This forms an important challenge for the breeding of new varieties; How to realize the specific conditions for the uncommon varieties?
Realising an optimal greenhouse temperature in Spain is challenging because of the limited control of the temperature. By opening the windows, the temperature will barely drop, therefore as a grower you need to adjust the other plant balances. Together, we changed the greenhouse automation concept in order to have more influence on the optimum balance between temperature and light. “Thanks to the advice of Hoogendoorn, we learned together a lot about the light balance, the iSii+ PAR Control and other specific growing conditions. Resulting in less errors, less work and customization for more parameters and influences for the future”.
A tip for cactuses and succulents lovers:
Deltacactus has one tip for cactuses and succulents lovers. Maintaining the water balance is crucial. “When you really love succulents, stop to give water. In the evolution of the succulents it was an important aspect to survive, therefore the plants do have a chemical closing of the stomata in order to survive for months in nature. In nature it only rains two weeks per year, and only then the plants open their stomata. Only when you do not take a lot of care for the plants, the plants will be happy and healthy.