Frostbuster is a new system, engine and technology, developed to protect fruit plantations from the frost damage. In order to raise domestic experiences and measurements, experimental approach has been initiated to prove the utility of the system under excessively low temperature in the plantation of the Siófoki Gyümölcstermesztési Zrt (Fru...it Growing Co. Siófok). The first opportunity ensued in the night of February 23-24, 2011, when the temperature sank to 12°C below zero. The question was to see whether we could prevent the drop of temperature by the frostbuster technique. The margin of an anticyclone staying on East Europe secured a stable condition to make tests. The only difference from the imaginable conditions of dangerous frosts was the heat keeping capacity of trees was weak, much inferior than compared with trees in full boom. As a consequence, the tree rows represented much lower heat-capacity and cooled down much quicker than blooming trees in springtime, i.e. their temperature was more variable. The other difference was, compared with an episode in spring that the hard frost lasted much longer than usually in spring. For testing the system, those conditions had even more advantage. Six meteorological stations helped us in measurement. Data-collectors were timed to 1 minute distances and the bulk of data proved to be beneficial for testing the Frostbuster. The results prove that the system is adequate to keep the temperature continuously higher than the surrounding field under excessively low temperatures. Further measurements are still needed to find the optimal solutions fitting to the growing site and its microclimate. Results presented offer a basis of further proofs.
The aim of the study was to fi nd out which of the methods used to avoid damages of late frosts would be the most effective for the fruit growing practice. Three technologies have been tested in the regions of Siófok and Debrecen-Pallag. The antifrost irrigation proved to be the most advantageous. For that purpose microjet sprayers are used, w...hich are thrifty and do not need for that purpose large containers. With the aim to secure an even distribution of water, the sprayers are distributed on three levels: above and inside of the crown as well as on the level of trunks. On a large scale, a single microjet above the crown level would be suffi cient. By means of a detailed analysis served to set the optimum intervals between spraying phases: with each 15, 10, 5 and 3 minutes during half a minute. The synchronous presence of water and ice below the freezing point, the released freezing heat plus the water used much above the freezing point (9–10 °C) altogether maintains the temperature above around 0°C near the fl owers or growing fruitlets, meanwhile, the surrounding air cools down to –8 °C. The effectiveness of the generally used anti-frost would be increased substantially by the former application of cooling irrigation, which delays the blooming date. The Frostbuster represents a new technology developed for the same purpose of frost defence. It uses butane burning and produces high (80-90°C) temperature with a strong blast of air. On the protected area sensors have been distributed for measuring temperature and relative humidity. The means of the measurements proved a rise of temperature, which was suffi cient to save the fruit trees until the difference is less than –3–3.5 °C. Our analyses stated that paraffi n candles avert the frost until –4 °C. Its success depends largely on the intensity of air movements. A small wind would be enough to frustrate the effect. The results show clearly the utility of Frostbuster and paraffi n candle combined is approved.