Online course

Save energy in an integrated way

The Plant Empowerment principles have been proven to enable growers to cultivate crops in high-tech greenhouses more profitably and more sustainably, not least thanks to helping them to reduce their energy consumption. Due to the current situation in the energy market, a multidisciplinary team of Plant Empowerment implementation partners organized a series of online training sessions to share the energy-saving knowledge they have gained during real-life projects. You can follow the four-part online Plant Empowerment course “Tips and tricks for surviving the energy crisis” online at your own convenience. 

Register for the course


During the course several Plant Empowerment specialists teach all about how to save energy when growing healthy and resilient crops in an integrated way. The course is divided into four sessions, of which each session focuses on how an integrated approach can reduce energy consumption, while also contributing to healthier and more resilient crops. Register here for the full course.

All four parts of the course can be followed by participants online at their own convenience.

Reduce energy consumption

while improving crop quality

The current record-breaking energy prices are having a major impact on high-tech horticulture. Many growers will need to make considerable energy savings in order for their business to survive the coming winter. This cost pressure is causing companies to look for creative solutions. Some growers have decided to leave their greenhouses empty this season, while others are reducing the amount of artificial lighting they provide to their crops, or leaving the lights off altogether.

The Plant Empowerment principles have been helping growers to take an integrated approach to cultivation for several years now. This data-driven growing method, which focuses on aligning all the crop balances, lead to higher yields and better quality while also ensuring that inputs such as water, nutrients and – especially important in the current times – energy are used more efficiently.

The success of this integrated approach has been demonstrated in various real-life projects worldwide by a multidisciplinary team of Plant Empowerment implementation partners. They have gained valuable insights into how screening and air movement can help to optimize the climate, for example, and how artificial lighting can contribute to a healthier root zone. In some cases, energy savings of up to 30% have been achieved.

About the program

  • 1. How energy affects climate and plants

    Energy is currently a very important topic in greenhouse horticulture. During this course, trainers Rene Beerkens and Mark van der Werf discuss what effect energy (input) has on both climate and plants. Rene will talk about the effect of less energy input on light, temperature and humidity. And with the data from the Autonomous Greenhouse Challenge he will show we can actually do more with less. In the second part of the webinar, Mark will discuss the energy level of the plant. What determines this energy level and how is it affected by less input. So a must see for every greenhouse grower!

    Trainers: Mark van der Werf, Plant Health Specialist and Rene Beerkens, Climate Specialist.
  • 2. How to reduce your energy inputs using screening and air movement

    During this course, a team of specialists focuses on screens and air movement. How can you optimally insulate your greenhouse while maintaining a good and healthy climate for your plants? In the past, energy was abundant for a grower. This provided a certain margin for error. Now that the price of energy is high, fewer mistakes can be made. Balancing is key. Insulation is extra important now, growers need to insulate more while making sure there is air movement in the greenhouse. Follow this course if you want to learn more on this.

    Trainers: Ton Habraken, Screening Specialist and Peter van Weel, co-author of the book Plant Empowerment. Co-trainers: Paul van Gils, Lighting Specialist
  • 3. How to get the most out of your artificial lighting

    This educational program fully focuses on artificial lighting and teaches growers how lighting can optimize efficiency. The program kicks off with an online course about artificial light, given by main trainers Stéphane André and Evripidis Papadopoulos. They focus on the various options currently available for using artificial light during the winter period, in combination with adaptive strategies and goals for this “new growing era”. How much “energy” does each system bring into the greenhouse, how efficient is each system and what is the effect on the plant both short and long term. Some side topics such as intelligent lighting will also be discussed during this course.

    You can follow this program separately. Find more information here.

    Trainers: Stéphane André, Lighting Specialist and Evripidis Papadopoulos, Researcher and Data analyst. Co-trainers: Rene Beerkens, Climate Specialist
  • 4. How reduced energy inputs affect your irrigation strategy

    During this course, a team of specialists cover various topics, mainly focused on creating a healthy and resilient plant and the importance of the right irrigation strategy. For example, now that energy is scarce and growers decide to give less energy, this also means that less evaporation takes place and subsequently less watering should take place. The trainers will cover irrigation strategies, substrate properties, plant genetics, nutrition, and of course which data to monitor closely.

    Trainers: Remy Maat, Substrate Specialist & Rob van Dijk, Data Driven Growing Specialist Co-trainer: Richard Bremmer, Organic Substrate Specialist
  • Webinar: Optimizing radiation at crop level (Oct 18)

    Join us for the webinar, "Optimizing Radiation at Crop Level," where we'll shed light on innovative strategies to maximize natural light usage in your greenhouse while minimizing energy consumption. Discover how advanced techniques like better screens, specialized coatings, and dynamic lighting can help you achieve the perfect balance for your plants, all while saving on energy costs.

    Trainers: Stéphane André, Lighting Specialist, Paul van Gils, Coating Specialist & Bart Bakker, Screening Specialist
  • Webinar: How (crop) data influences energy demand (Oct 25)

    Join us for the webinar, "How crop data influences energy demand" where we'll delve into using crop data for informed decision-making. Explore essential crop registration items and their growth relevance. Learn to leverage local conditions for optimizing energy use and translate data analysis into actionable strategies. Join us to master efficient energy management through data-driven insights.

    Trainers: Hans de Vries, Crop Specialist, Teddy Payoga, Data Specialist and Paul de Koning, Climate Specialist

Ticket sales

Participants will receive a recorded version to watch online at their own convenience.

* All revenue generated by this online training course will be reinvested in the further development of the Plant Empowerment philosophy.

Do you have any additional questions about the course?

Project Manager

Jeannette den Boer