East Malling researchers kelp Kenyan rose-growers

Workers at factory On the farms, the plants are expected to be given about 40% less water

Related Stories

Scientists have developed a new way of growing roses using 80% less water.

The research is to help growers in Kenya meet demand for Valentine's Day flowers in Europe and America.

Scientists at East Malling Research in Kent said they were perfecting giving the plants as little water as possible, but enough to keep them healthy.

Ross Newham, from East Malling Research, said it currently took took eight litres of water to produce one stem of rose.

"That's difficult enough in the UK, it's even more challenging in Kenya where 70% of our roses come from," he said.

"There are times when they don't have as much water as they need for people and the environment as well as horticultural production which is so important to them.

"We want to use the science we have developed here to help them produce wonderful roses for Valentine's Day, but in a more sustainable manner."

On the farms in Kenya, the plants are expected to be given about 40% less water.

Field trials are due to begin later this year.

The method was originally tested on strawberries.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Kent



Min. Night 15 °C


  • John CurticeScotland decides

    Referendum race 'may have got tighter'

  • RihannaCloud caution

    After celebrity leaks, what can you do to safeguard your photos?

  • Cesc FabregasFair price?

    Have some football clubs overpaid for their new players?

  • Woman and hairdryerBlow back

    Would banning high-power appliances actually save energy?

  • Rack of lambFavourite feast

    Is the UK unusually fond of lamb and potatoes?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.