[Market-farming] Hi Tunnel innovations

Sue Wells farmersue at myfairpoint.net
Mon Jan 18 15:51:16 EST 2016

I have a rimols greenhouse/high tunnel. It is great for heavy snowfalls,
which I know you don't have. We get some terrible winds here, and have held
up very well. I think Rimal is more expensive than others, but are very

Good Luck.  you will find farming is just as rewarding as Nursing!!


Sue Wells

Farmer Sue  Retired RN and live in Vermont, but from NW Arkansas


From: Market-farming [mailto:market-farming-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On
Behalf Of carla puller
Sent: Monday, January 18, 2016 1:31 PM
To: Market Farming
Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Hi Tunnel innovations



 I have plans to semi retire in 2 years from 40 years of nursing and am
going to be more involved in our local famers market. I've tried all kinds
and sizes of green houses only to watch them get clobbered by some of the
straight line winds we get in mi-Missouri. I'd like to get into a mid size
high tunnel but am worried as to how they stand up to nasty wind. What kind
of high tunnel would be good to start with?  Cost always a factor. 



From: Market-farming <market-farming-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org> on behalf of
Shoemaker, William H <wshoemak at illinois.edu>
Sent: Monday, January 18, 2016 5:21 AM
To: Market Farming
Subject: [Market-farming] Hi Tunnel innovations 


Thought I'd share this to stimulate the list a bit. Seems like its been
pretty dormant this winter.


I first learned about tunnels for growing crops about 20 years ago, through
the academic community I was part of, especially New Hampshire. I built my
first one in 1998 and it changed my perspective on market farming
enormously. Since then, tunnels have become well-established on market farms
all over the world. I suspect almost all subscribers to this list who
actually run or work on a market farm have at least one tunnel for growing
crops. One of the great things that seemed to happen after growers began to
use them was innovation. Growers had great ideas for how to adjust
management of tunnels, or even make changes to the tunnel itself to better
position themselves for success in the market. Keeping in mind that everyone
has a unique market, I'm curious if anyone would like to share an innovation
they adopted, or created, that gave them an advantage in their market. 


While I'm not growing commercially, yet, I expect to. I'm selling my house
and will look for a property where we can set ourselves up for sustainable
living and a market farming operation. I'll be 64 in a few months but I'm in
very good physical condition and will be looking to benefit from the work
involved. However, at least one of my sons wants to be involved as well, so
I'll be able to pace myself. But I want to be able to have product in the
marketplace 12 months/year. I think that will have a great benefit to the
business. So I intend to use row covers inside the tunnels to keep the crops
thriving during the colder times of the year. I really like the design John
Berbaum at Michigan State was advocating a few years ago, where he had the
cover suspended above the crops and drawn from one side of the tunnel across
a pipe framework that held it up. He could use twine to pull the whole piece
of row cover uniformly across the crop, or back into the side. This reduced
effort and time to use the cover, and improved the crop at the same time.


That's my contribution. Anyone have other ideas that improved their tunnel



William H. Shoemaker 

Retired fruit and vegetable horticulturist

University of Illinois

wshoemak at illinois.edu

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