How to Build a Low Tunnel Part 2: Installing greenhouse poly plastic

How to Build a Low Tunnel Part 2: Installing greenhouse poly plastic


Well it’s been about three weeks since
we put the low tunnel hoops in and we got the row cover and the greenhouse
plastic over on top of them however we did not get a chance to actually secure
the hoops down the way that I wanted to that night that we put it in pretty
much the bottom dropped out on the temperatures has been cold. We had this
cold snap in the middle of November. But then on the warm days when it would warm
up above freezing it’d be really windy. And I didn’t feel like wrestling around
with like 20 feet of plastic on days like that. On the warm days though we
would open up and vent the low tunnel and we would allow the excess heat
to drain out. We’ve been harvesting we’ve been using the low tunnel and
we’ve gotten some some really good results and successes. But today it’s
warmed up the wind is pretty moderate and light. I want to take the plastic off
the row cover off and I want to show you what I wanted to originally do with
the hoops and securing them down with rope and some stakes. And then also how
we fastened the plastic onto the hoops and then keep the sides weighed down. So
let’s check that out. The first thing after uncovering the low
tunnel, what I’m gonna do is I have my stakes which I have these are just
wooden stakes I’ve drilled a nice little hole through them about 3/4 inch hole
and I am going to put one stake at this end and one at the other end. This is
what’s gonna anchor our rope that’s gonna secure the low tunnel frame or the
hoops. There’s folks I’ve seen use rebar and I think that works fine the one
thing I’ve heard though is that when the soil gets wet in the winter and early
spring rebar tends to be pulled through the soil because it moves much easier than
say a flat piece of wood like this so I’d say use whatever you have that’s
available we have a bunch of wooden stakes that’s why I’m using that. But you
want to drive it in at an angle because there’s going to be a lot of pulling
happening when the wind is hitting the plastic on this high tunnel and or when
there’s a snow load on top so it’s gonna be pulling on these stakes and so this
is going to be the thing that’s going to keep this
tunnel up hopefully fingers crossed you know when the snows arrive and the
cold winter winds start whipping down through here. Next what we’re gonna do is
we’re gonna take our rope and we are going to tie one end at the stake on
one side of the low tunnel and then we will wrap the rope around the center of
the low tunnel frames or the hoops and we will just pretty much create
a spine all along the the center and we’ll tie it off at the other end of the
low tunnel. Next we’re gonna put the row cover back on and then the poly plastic
we’re gonna secure it with these plastic clips. The way that I like to do this is
especially helpful even on like a windy day or really any time is to pretty much
a secure one side of the plastic one end of the plastic and then come to the
opposite end and then pull it really tight and then secure that end. I
actually don’t clip the hoops in the middle unless the plastic is
really loose or something like that. But I just I fastened it to the
hoop on one end stretch the row cover and plastic to the opposite end and then
pull as hard as I can and then clip the the ends the end hoops the plastic the
end hoops so let me show you how I do that. When it comes to the row cover and even
the the poly plastic they do have cues of where the middle of the the material
is and so here it’s actually the name of the product they have it running right
down the middle and so that’s what you want to line up in the center. So this is
one end I put the row cover over and then a fasten this end and then go to
the opposite end, pull real hard fasten that end. And then that’s row cover next
will be the plastic. A nd now we have the plastic so what I’m going to do got the
row cover nice and tight over here Plastics just going right over tops
going to give us that dual layer of insulation that’s going to be really
helpful in keeping a lot of heat trapped in here on those cold days. With the
plastic you’re going to look for where the folds are in the material and
there’s different folds but you can find the center fold here and you want to
make sure you keep that on line right down the middle of the your low tunnel
frames right here so these white real cover or plastic
clips they really only work best if you put them on like a straight run a pipe
don’t put them on the curved part because you’re not gonna get a very
secure grip so once you get your ends clip together of your your row cover or
your plastic you can pretty much you can go from end and undo the clips tighten
things up if you need to but after you get the plastic secured to the frame
next is securing the edges where I’m located we get a lot of wind 30
mile-per-hour gusts are pretty much business as usual where I’m located so
we do have to take a bit of extra effort to secure down the edges just because I
don’t want to be driving down the highway one day and see a sale of
plastic from my low tunnel blowing across the road what we’re using to
secure our edges as concrete block really heavy block and that’s not the
ideal material to use mostly because of these sharp corners here as the plastic
moves in the wind that the corners of the blocks do rip and tear holes in the
the fabrics and the plastic so I really do recommend you know if you can this is
material we have but if you can use some type of like bags that are built for
this you fill the bags with rock don’t fill them with soil or anything what
folks have found out is if you fill the the bags of weighted bags with soil is
they’ll dry out over the winter and they get really light and then you know the
heavy bags that you started off with the fall by springtime they kid they’re not
heavy enough to hold down the plastic so I recommend something that without sharp
corners or edges that would be poking holes in your plastic because the goal
is to keep your low tunnel plastic going for for years and years you know the
life expectancy for a lot of greenhouse or high tunnel low tunnel plastic is
about seven years and you want to make sure that it survives that long to make
meet that life expectancy what I do for the ends of the low tunnel I actually
will gather them up and I will them like I’m rolling up like the ends
of a tootsie roll a piece of candy and then I’ll just lay that on the ground
put a big old heavy concrete block on top of that I’ll do that for either in
very useful very easy to take that off unroll it look underneath the plastic
make sure everything’s doing all right underneath so that is a building a low
tunnel took a little bit longer than I had hoped but hopefully you enjoyed this
video please like our channel subscribe and as always thank you all for watching

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