[Market-farming] Hi Tunnel innovations

Beth Spaugh lists at rhomestead.com
Mon Jan 18 19:14:05 EST 2016

First, check with your USDA-NRCS office.  You may get one almost free 
with the high tunnel grants.  They have a list of approved 
manufacturers.  I am drawing a blank at the moment, but there is a very 
well regarded company in your area.

Ah - Morgan County Seeds.  It is on this list: 

On 1/18/2016 1:30 PM, carla puller wrote:
> Hello,
>  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 operation?
> Bill
> *William H. Shoemaker *
> /Retired fruit and vegetable horticulturist/
> /University of Illinois/
> wshoemak at illinois.edu <mailto:wshoemak at illinois.edu>
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Beth Spaugh
Rehoboth Homestead, Peru NY
http://rhomestead.com      http://www.facebook.com/rhomestead

"How we eat determines, to a considerable extent, how the world is used." -
Wendell Berry

"Without power over our food, any notion of democracy is empty." - Frances
Moore Lappe

It's not that nice guys finish last. They have a whole different notion
where the finish line is. - unknown

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