Greenhouses in Hveragerði
Greenhouses in Hveragerði Reviews
Greenhouses and Nurseries in Hveragerði Oct 25, 2010
Hveragerði, was our second last stop on the Golden Circle tour. It was one of those unexpected stops after what I thought would have been a better stop in Kerid. We had left the crater area of Kerid where we had spent less than 20 minutes in order to stop at the Green House. It did not look like much coming in to the drive way from the main highway. This was such a surprise, who would have thought Iceland capable of having green houses? Growing tropical plants with tropical temperatures. The green houses in Hveragerði, use geothermal energy to support agriculture. Plants and vegetables like peppers, tomatoes, tropical flowers, green bananas etc.
Hveragerði, is located in the southern part of Iceland and is considered the country's greenhouse capital. It is interesting to find a greenhouse in an environment like Iceland. The Icelandic climate is not exactly a hospitable one when it comes to agriculture. The first green-house was built in Hveragerði in 1930, and due to all the geothermal water in this area Hveragerði is one of the main green-house towns in Iceland. Having the greenhouse speaks much for the Icelandic people's ability to tame their environment. In a country well known for it's phenomenal volcanic eruptions, it is a wonder that their country can trade at all with the international community. But the same forces of nature that destroys, also creates lifelines: the volcanic eruptions and hot springs give resource to geothermal energy used to power food production and sustainable heat for household use and generation of electricity. The same electricity used to heat up the greenhouses in the south.
Heating greenhouse using geothermal energy began in 1924, the greenhouses are enclosed in glass. One wonders what the magnitude is of what can be produces in these green houses; the production is substantial enough for export.
In recent years however the total surface area of greenhouses has decreased despite an increase in total production. This is due to increased use of artificial lighting and caborndioxide in the greenhouses. Much of the outdoor growing at several locations has been enhanced by soil heating though geothermal water, especially during early spring. Soil heating enables growers to thaw the soil so vegetables can be brought to market sooner. It is estimated that about 120,000 cubic meters of fields are heated this way. Soil heating is not a growing application, partly because similar results are commonly obtained at a lower cost by covering the plants with plastic sheets. The total geothermal energy used in Iceland's greenhouse sector is huge, making this an important industry to invest in for the Icelandic government.
Unfortunately we did not stay long enough to tour the inside of more than one green house. The one we stopped at had some green bananas, tropical trees, flowers and some aloe. There was a grocery store attached to it called the Viking. The viking has souvenirs and postcards and some of Iceland's best woolen mitts, hats, sweaters. Made of wool is what they are called.
Price: I'm not sure how much a standalone tour would cost, I did the tour as part of the Golden Circle. I highly recommend doin git as part of the tour as it is not much to spend money on unless you are an agricultural or hoticultural research person.
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