Valente Solutions: the plant cover system for the Lemon grove at Rocca Imperiale


Today we would like to speak about a very special lemon that has been cultivated for centuries in the Rocca Imperiale (Cosenza) area in Italy and is known by its name “Antico di Rocca Imperiale”.

This fruit is oblong in shape, medium in size, usually seedless, with an intense perfume.

The lemon plant produces three different types of fruit after three blooming phases: Primofiore (ready from May to July), Maiolino (harvested from May to July) and Verdello (harvested from August to October).

The change in climate caused by the progressive warming trend of the Mediterranean Sea and consequently of the Ionian Sea has unfortunately generated – over the past years – a series of extreme weather events that have jeopardized the harvest of this unique product. Wind and hail have brought serious damage, especially in the spring and autumn. Hence this has also caused a loss of income for lemon farmers and problems to the plants that can even dry up.

Therefore, considering the problems mentioned above, the Valente Research & Development department has introduced some adjustments in the system (see picture) thanks to the experience gained in the field.

First of all, we have decided to use a mesh that not only works as a protection against hail and wind, but also provides for about a 15% shade that in the summer produces a slight decrease in temperatures.
Originally we had considered using a 30% shade mesh, but this would have caused a late harvesting, thus we discarded this option.

The system was adjusted based on the plants that had already been planted.

Spacing between rows is 5 metres and between intermediate poles is 9 metres.
For the perimeter we have used CAP KLASSIC 8×12 poles, for the rows CAP KLASSIC 8×8 poles, all with the same 5 mt. height. Since the netting is left open all the year round, the system is equipped with double side anchoring. The whole structure is strengthened by means of a transverse steel wires system.

Our client has chosen our company for a turnkey project. Besides the project carried out by our technicians, we have appointed the company Irrigarden – since many years, our certified installer for Calabria and the Metaponto area – to install the cover system.
Selecting the installer is an extremely important choice to guarantee the best quality since a Valente certified installer attends training course organized at our premises, acquires product knowledge and tests both the solutions and the materials at our in-house test areas.

Moreover, our staff is all trained and regularly employed. Another extremely important aspect concerns the equipment that is compliant with work safety requirements and guarantees the best stability to the system. Our clients can therefore follow with peace of mind all the different phases of system installation.

To conclude we can certainly affirm that companies investing on this type of plant cover system can rest assured they will harvest their product, which will be the best and most in demand, thus also ensuring them profit.