The experimental field of University of Thessaly is used for the training of students as well as for the field experiments of Faculty Staff of the Department of Agriculture Crop Production and Rural Environment, of the School of Agricultural Sciences of University of Thessaly.
The experimental field is located in Velestino which is near the national road from Athens to Thessaloniki, Magnesia, Greece (Latitude 39o 23′ North, Longitude 22o 45′ East, elevation 70m above the sea level). It covers an area of 15ha and it is used for the experimental needs of School of Agricultural Sciences.
The Soil belongs to a single geological form, which has small differences in terms of geological origin. It is located, almost, in a single topographic relief, accepting the influence of the same climatic factors and therefore in such soils the flora and fauna are uniform. The soil divided into three different groups depending on the origin of parent materials. The farm land is classified as sandy clay loam while pH is alkaline and organic matter values are moderate to low. In general, the fertility of this soil is acceptable.
Part of the experimental field’s area is covered by the farm buildings. These include greenhouse facilities, students’ residences, laboratory facilities and storage and maintenance buildings of agricultural machinery. Some old buildings are also used to house the farm staff during their daily work. The greenhouses cover an area equal to a quarter of a hectare, approximately.
The remaining part of the experimental field is covered by orchards and other crops. The orchards occupy a hectare, approximately. This area contains, mainly, apple, pear, peach and olive trees and some coniferous trees. The remaining area is covered by annual crops, vegetables and ornamental plants.
Irrigation is carried out by a pump system which is University’s property. In parallel, to accommodate the various research projects, two tanks of approximately 50m3 and a smaller one, are used. Apart from these main tanks, there is a small reservoir of 5m3, which is used in research projects such as the application of Treated Municipal Wastewater in Agriculture.
The equipment includes two modern farm weather stations, tractors and all the needed tools for the soil cultivation. The equipment includes a small combine for harvesting the experimental plots.
The research which is carried out on the experimental field of the University of Thessaly is multidimensional. It contains:
Research about the productivity of energy plants,
- The study of the effects of using each cultivating tool in the soil properties,
- The impact of different amounts of water and different irrigation methods in productivity of the crops,
- The study of new varieties and hybrids of different species of crops,
- The application of new technologies in all the cultivation practices,
- The application of innovative methods and techniques in crop production and
- The study of economical results of all the previous applications.