Carbon Dioxide or C02 enrichment is one of the most talked about factors of modern horticulture. During the past century, C02 levels in the atmosphere have risen steadily, due mostly to combustion of fossil fuels. Atmospheric C02 levels have climbed from an average of 280 ppm in 1860, to 340 ppm by 1981, a general increase of about 11 percent. Current estimates predict C02 levels to double in the next 70 years.
Carbon Dioxide will increase growth in green plants. Green plants use carbon dioxide and water in the presence of light energy to synthesize organic compounds. The green plant then converts the organic compounds into sugars or food, through a process called photosynthesis. Carbon Dioxide can also be a limiting factor as well, if the conditions to which the plant is growing in are not adequate the added C02 will be of no use.
Physiological evidence strongly indicates that most plants have the potential for increased production, but the extent of plant response is also dependent on such factors as temperature, light, nutrition, water, and carbon dioxide levels. Blackman's law states that the rate of any process which is governed by two or more factors is limited by the factor of least supply.
Elevated levels of C02 will of little benefit at low light levels or temperature. If your light intensity is raised or temperature for that matter, higher levels of C02 can stimulate new growth. Elevated C02 levels will also call for increased fertilizer and water requirements.
If you are considering C02 enrichment, there are a few things to keep in in mind. Enrichment of C02 should commence at sunrise or when your articial lighting comes on and cease during dark period. The average C02 level recommended is between 1000 and 2000 ppm. the objective is to keep a constant level in the atmosphere. A small unit can be operated continuously or a larger unit can be used and put on a timed sequence. In a situation where exhausting is frequent you may want to run the latter. After the exhaust function the unit can be cycled to replenish the C02 levels quickly to maintain excellerated growth. We have enclosed operating charts which show you how to calculate how much C02 you need, how long your unit will have to run for, and what unit you require. I hope this helps.
There are various equipment to supplement C02, if you have a smaller area or heat buildup may be a consideration then we suggest using bottled C02, it is more expensive that using other forms. There are also emitter systems for the dispersement of C02 and all the controlling devices that you require are also available. If you have a larger area or heat is not a consideration then we suggest using C02 generators which work by burning either liquid propane or natural gas, the major drawback to using generators is that the byproducts of combustion are heat, water vapour, and C02. We want the C02 but not necessarily the the other components.
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