Sjef van den Berg

sjef van den berg

Sjef van den Berg

He moved from Milton to Beamsville two months ago. A brand new complex, just around 700 meters from Lake Ontario. A lovely nursery with ErfGoed cultivation floors inside and out. “I’ve got a vertically-drained cultivation floor under 19 roof panels and the ebb-and-flow system under another 3 roof panels.” The total surface area is around 7,500 square meters. His crop is primarily azaleas and gardenias. “They are long-term crops. It takes two years before they can be sold.” Although he irrigates the whole surface area from above, he has reserved the area under three roof panels for a set-up with an ebb-and-flow floor. “If I want to supply plants in the winter, I have to keep the azaleas warm, so that they will flower. In those circumstances, you have to water from below, because of the flowers.

In Milton he hired a nursery and, as the rental term was coming to an end, he decided to buy some land himself two years ago. He chose Beamsville, on the south side of the lake. In Milton, he was used to working with a concrete floor. “The down side of concrete is that the bottom of the pot stays wet a long time after watering. So individual plants are left standing in their own mess for hours, and that’s not good for them. I wanted to break with that system, because I was getting more and more root problems.”

He now has two months’ experience of his ErfGoedFloor. Although the root structure of the new plants appears to be robust, the batch that he brought from Milton is yet to show a marked improvement. “I really need more time to see whether this floor is the actual solution to my problem. Of course, it might have something to do with the history of the plant inside the pot, because I can see that everything is really thriving on this surface. Generally speaking, the plants look healthy. They grow so well here. But that doesn’t surprise me one bit. In the Netherlands we also had a number of those moments when you could see production suddenly undergoing a spurt. That always went hand-in-hand with new techniques in the field of irrigation systems.”


He knew ErfGoed from his time in the Netherlands. “I wanted a cultivation floor, so it’s natural to choose a company that has lots of experience and expertise in that area. And that is ErfGoed. There’s no company here in Canada that can boast that sort of profile. Sjef was happy with the installation process. Completed in the time that had been allocated. And if he wants to expand in future, he would choose the ErfGoedFloor again.