White papers

This is a reference section that you can use as a way to help you understand your business better. It will also introduce and explain the terms livingshade uses on the rest of the site.

Hardening-Off Houses

Large spans using "C" sectionsScreens openScreens closing

Hardening-off houses that will increase your output by up to 20%

Shade Protection

Moveable aluminium screens from Svensson reduce plant temperature by up to 12°C and reduce pot and water temperatures.

Regular shade houses “kill an ant with a shot gun”. If you want to shade your plants for four (4) hours (l0am- 2pm) daily, the answer is not to cover them for all of the other 20 hours. If you do, photosynthesis is down by at least 50% and growth slows by up to 20%. The results with Svensson screens are hardier, healthier plants.

Frost Protection

At night, the aluminium reflects radiation back to your crop protecting it from light frost by up to 6°C.

All Svensson screens are guaranteed for 5 years against UV and tried and tested all over the world. Growers can expect to get up to 8 years of benefits and many growers get an investment payback within 2 years.

Moveable screens

The moveable screens, shown left in the closed and opened position, can be installed on simple pipe frames or with spans of 8.0 x 4.0m on ‘C’ sections. The drive systems are either by cable or rack and pinion.

Click the image to enlarge

Hardening diagram

On-Growing Houses

Crop without screen protectionCrop with Svensson screen

On-growing houses that combine light, ventilation, temperature, and rH for an optimal climate.

The photos on the right show identical crops in two different houses. The upper image shows the crop without screen protection. The lower image shows a crop with the Svensson screen and the crop is 0.5m larger and 20% ahead of the other.

With Svensson screens your crop will:

  • Grow faster
  • Be of better quality
  • Increase output
  • Have less disease
  • Hence less spraying

This leads to lower costs, particularly labour costs. If you’re heating you can reduce costs by up to 50%.

All around the world the most profitable growers achieve these results with Svensson Screens and it is one of the few investments you can make and usually get your money back within 2 years!

The internal screens come with a 5 year pro-rata guarantee and are resistant to greenhouse chemicals. They are knitted, so they don’t fray. The structure allows the screens to fold into a very small bundle, maximising light transmission when the screen is open.


The easiest rule in optimising light is to let the light from the morning in, provide shade during the hottest part of the day, then open up the screens to let the sun in during the afternoon. By closing the screens at night you increase the night temperature and the plant temperature.


During the day Svensson screens reflect the sun’s radiation upwards, cooling the plants by up to 12°C. At night the films and foils block outgoing radiation, keeping the heat in the houses and keeping the plants warmer by up to 6°C. The more aluminium, the greater the effect. With heating costs, the savings can be 50%.



Ventilation also means CO2. On-growing houses should never be more than 1°C or 2°C above ambient air temperature.


70% to 80% rH is the ideal target. Low humidity means high transpiration and low growth and quality. Watering increases the rH but if too high, can also help spread disease. High humidity creates condensation and disease and also nutrient deficiencies.

Svensson screens help balance the rH, increasing it on hot days and reducing dew drop on the crop on cold nights.

Propagate Plants With A Stable Climate

Small tunnels with screensAutomated production on rolling benchesFodder shedsHeat mats

Control Your Own Climate

The aim is to produce quality hardened plants in the shortest time at the lowest cost. The control of relative humidity and temperature lets you…

  • Use optimum light to open the stomata
  • Control transpiration rate
  • Have dryer foliage
  • Control diseases

A more balanced climate produces better structured, healthier plants and reduces plant stress. When they are moved to on-growing areas there is less shock and faster growth.

  • Ventilation
  • Svensson Solar Screens
  • Lights
  • Fog System
  • Boom Sprayers
  • Mist
  • Watering
  • Capillary
  • Bottom Heating

Plant Factory

This is your “money making factory”

Plants require all kinds of raw materials in order to manufacture leaves, roots, buds and fruit.

They require:

  • Light
  • Temperature
  • Humidity
  • CO2
  • Water

For 3 main processes:

1. Photosynthesis

The plant absorbs carbon dioxide from the air, and together with water and heat, creates carbohydrates and oxygen. Photosynthesis is dependent on the correct level of light, carbon dioxide and temperature.

2. Respiration

The plant transforms some of the carbohydrates from photosynthesis into energy for maintenance processes. The remaining carbohydrates are transformed into plant tissue. The respiration process is highly dependent on and regulates the plant’s temperature.

3. Transpiration

Leaf transpiration controls the water and nutrition uptake in addition to the cooling of the plant. Leaf transpiration must be sufficient to enable the leaf to maintain the desired temperature and develop a strong metabolism. The transpiration process depends on light intensity, temperature and humidity.

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