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Long English cucumber grower switches to different variety

In the summer of 2018, Rijk Zwaan representative, Max Saad, introduced Rijk Zwaan’s new summer variety Bluesbrother RZ to Abe Friesen, owner and grower of Hope Lane Farms. The resulting 2-acre test gave more cucumbers overall and an overall higher percentage of medium/large compared to medium/small.
Friesen values yield and size in his crops. He also believes high fruit quality is equally important to maintain his 10-year relationship with his marketing partner. To ensure the best results, Friesen’s crop shows what Bluesbrother RZ likes – early buildup of a good plant factory and sufficient stem fruit pruning. He believes with these two factors, you will be rewarded with plentiful laterals producing a stable fruit length that requires less labor to keep them open. Bluesbrother RZ generally makes a smaller leaf and the fruits have straight, strong ribbing- setting it apart from other varieties.
This year, all of Hope Lane Farm’s summer plantings have been with Bluesbrother RZ and with 2 ½ weeks left in this crop cycle, Friesen has already matched last year’s production. “I didn’t have to change my growing strategy when I switched from Verdon RZ to Bluesbrother RZ. I just look to the crop and see if I need to make adjustments in the temperatures”, says Friesen. With a darker year, Friesen says he has “gone a bit lower with the temperatures, but still [I] haven’t gone under 18°C at night.”
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