Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Polytunnel  (Read 11610 times)

Bert

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Isle of Mull
Polytunnel
« on: July 09, 2013, 07:14:34 am »
My new polytunnel arrived yesterday  :excited:
 Just got to put it up now  :roflanim: . It shouldn't be to difficult it's not a massive one.
My tomatoes can have some space now 8) .

Ina

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • South Aberdeenshire
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2013, 07:19:49 am »
Great! Space for tomatoes, now that would be something...
I bought one of those mini plastic greenhouses last year that you get cheap everywhere. Put two tomatoes in last year - one hanging, one upright - but that was too much! So this year I only bought one plant. But I was given a "spare" cucumber plant not long ago - so now space is at a premium again!  ;D

I'll never learn.  ::)

Don't forget to post pictures once it's up and running!

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2013, 04:33:24 pm »
 :excited: :excited:
I wanted a polytunnel but it't not going to happen now.

Mammyshaz

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Durham
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2013, 09:31:31 pm »
I got one for my birthday last year. We built it up end June so missed the main  seed season but what a difference it has made for seedlings this year.

 :fc: I'm sure you will find the extending of the season with it sooo good and early use a big bonus. Don't forget a little stool to sit and admire what you have been potting up while the rain comes down outside, such a good feeling  :sunshine:

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2013, 09:36:43 pm »
its on my wish list. are they not tricky to put up?

Bert

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Isle of Mull
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2013, 07:52:14 am »
its on my wish list. are they not tricky to put up?


As I'm still digging holes for the anchor plates. (Only 3 left to do  ::) )
I couldn't tell you if they are tricky to put up, but I'm going to take a stab in the dark and say yes they are a compleat arse to put up  :-J  .
 But definitely worth it  :excited: :excited:


Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2013, 11:55:29 am »
Oh you'll love it Bert  :thumbsup:
 
Yes they are a complete @3$e to put up, but the trick is total accuracy with placing the ground tubes.  If you don't get them totally square (ie at 90 deg) and vertical, then your cover will always be skew-wiff and won't tighten properly. 
 
I decided to grow just about everything in my tunnel this year because for the last couple of years my outdoor crops have failed due to rain, cold and lack of sun.  So this year of course we have a heatwave and no rain, so we are fast running out of water  ::)   The broad beans are amazing though  ;D  - I know, broad beans inside a tunnel  ???
 
Have fun  :garden:
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2013, 11:55:09 pm »
Ah Bert...... Fantastic. One polytunnel is never big enough. I am now planning for a second one. They are so great. I love going into mine when it rains nd it's still warm and dry. A very consoling place. I cn just it in there and deem  :thumbsup: :wave: :)
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

Bert

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Isle of Mull
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2013, 09:18:39 am »
Polytunnel update  :excited:
It's looking a lot more like a tunnel now  :excited:  we had some friends come round yesterday to help put the cover on, but they ended up helping finish off the main structure ( they take a lot longer to build than you think  :innocent: ) . By time it came to putting the cover on the wind had picked up a bit to much  :rant: . Hopefully Wednesday  :fc: :fc: :fc: :fc:  for the cover .


Can I ask  what you find grows well in your tunnels  :thumbsup: and what you have thought would do well but really hasn't   ??? and the obvious don't put that in your tunnel  :o

HelenVF

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2013, 10:49:19 am »
Yay!  OH was moaning yesterday about his veg patch, which he has completely abandoned this year as we have had 2 truly awful season, so just has a few bits in pots.  Would love to buy him a polytunnel one day!

Helen

NormandyMary

  • Joined Apr 2011
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2013, 12:25:01 pm »
What size is your tunnel Bert? We are thinking of getting a 4 metre one this year to put up at the start of next year. We've already got a little plastic greenhouse thingy for this year which is great. My tomatoes are really doing well in it, Im well chuffed so far.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2013, 12:25:48 pm »
That's great Bert.   :fc: for a calm day on Wed.
 
Sometimes I have grown brassicas in a tunnel and they have been wonderful - too wonderful sometimes as this year my brassicas are HUGE and shading out everything else, but in other years they have died off. 
 
I grow my climbing beans - actually all my beans - in the tunnel as it's just too windy outside for them, which makes the plants and the beans twisted, gnarled and scarred.  You need to pay attention to ventilation and pollination inside the tunnel with beans, so choose good setters and spray the flowers with water regularly.
 
I have had varying results with growing peas inside.  Most years they hate it, but this year I have a good crop.
 
I find that lettuce need very good spacing and shade to do well indoors or they rot, even with watering them only from the bottom.  They don't tend to get slugs though.  Other salad greens do well.
 
Pumpkins and squashes love being grown in a tunnel if you can provide the water they need.  Few slugs, lovely and warm, and crop bars to run along, which means they can grow as big as they want but be out of your way.  I've never had such big squashes as when I grow them inside.
 
This year I have grown my onions and garlic inside.  I haven't cropped them yet so the jury's still out, but the onions are looking promising.  I don't know about the garlic yet.
 
One crop which simply doesn't grow outdoors here is sweetcorn, so for years I grew it in the tunnel.  Initially I had a fair but not bountiful crop, but then the mice discovered them and hollowed out the cobs before I could pick them.  The other main problem with sweetcorn inside that I've found is that the pollen coats absolutely everything, then grows that black mould, so not only does the sweetcorn itself suffer, but so does everything else.  I didn't grow any last year or this year.
 
Of course I also grow the obvious stuff such as tomatoes, cucumbers, chillies, peppers, sometimes aubergines, inside, but I have never tried a grape vine.  The aubergines are in the greenhouse (which is inside my tunnel) and sometimes so are the chillies and peppers, but sometimes I plant them out in the soil. Tomatoes and cucs go in the soil too.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 12:30:54 pm by Fleecewife »
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Bert

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Isle of Mull
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2013, 01:38:27 pm »
What size is your tunnel Bert? We are thinking of getting a 4 metre one this year to put up at the start of next year. We've already got a little plastic greenhouse thingy for this year which is great. My tomatoes are really doing well in it, Im well chuffed so far.


I've got a 12, 20ft  sorry not got the brains to covert into meters  :dunce:  I think it 3, 6m maybe
 
Fleecewife  your tunnel must be huge with all that growing in it  ;D  or are you just very organised.
Thank you for all the advice. I now know why my runner beans are always odd shapes  :dunce:   :roflanim:  .
I'm trying the pack'm in tight approach this year 24 plants round 6 canes. We will see  :fc: . Will try them in the tunnel next year  :thumbsup:

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2013, 03:18:53 pm »
Mine is 7 x 14 metres which is about 21' x 42', and I think it's 10' or maybe 12' tall - nice and high anyway. The greenhouse inside is 6' x 8' so takes up half of one bay, and casts a bit of a shadow on the other half.
 
I do squash quite a lot in but I'm not growing as much of each thing as usual this year, because I have previously ended up giving it away or selling it, which after all that effort seems silly.
 
I don't use beds so I can fit plants in either in rows or dotted about individually, and rotation is easier. For some of the things I usually grow outside such as beetroot, I am using short rows and planting in succession - can't do that outside as the growing season is just too short.
 
I put in plenty of ventilation when I ordered my tunnel donkey's years ago, so I have double doors at one end, a single door at the other, and double width top and bottom louvres at each end.  Even so it can still get too hot in there.  Actually the bottom louvres aren't great as soil builds up in front of them, and grass outside, so opening them after a while can mean a lot of clearing  ::)   Also you have to plan your planting so you leave space for the louvres to open.
But good ventilation is essential if you are planting close.
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Bert

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Isle of Mull
Re: Polytunnel
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2013, 07:12:14 am »

I do squash quite a lot in but I'm not growing as much of each thing as usual this year, because I have previously ended up giving it away or selling it, which after all that effort seems silly.
 
I don't use beds so I can fit plants in either in rows or dotted about individually, and rotation is easier. For some of the things I usually grow outside such as beetroot, I am using short rows and planting in succession - can't do that outside as the growing season is just too short.
 


I am going to try my very best not to over do the planting :fc:  but I'm not holding my breath .
I do have a bed running down one side of the tunnel . I'm going to split it into 3, so i can rotate my crops properly each year. Well the tunnel has been built over one of the raised beds, only way it would fit. Also compost bags to fill all that space would workout expensive ( my home made stuff isn't ready and I don't have enough yet). Will still need compost to fill all the fish boxes that will be running down the centre of the tunnel and under the bench.
I've already drawn a plan and worked out were everything is going ( how sad is that  :-J ) for next year.


. Hopefully Wednesday  :fc: :fc: :fc: :fc:  for the cover .



I'm getting very very  :excited: :excited: :excited: . I want my tunnel finished so I can start playing in it.

 

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