polytunnel advice ?

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shamie
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polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 170748Post shamie
Fri Oct 02, 2009 7:37 pm

hi, am considering buying a polytunnel, wil have to spend about a thousand euro to get a decent one,supposing that it is used to full potential, how long wud it take to pay itself off ?

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MKG
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 170750Post MKG
Fri Oct 02, 2009 7:41 pm

Have a look at this before you commit yourself to buying one, Shamie.

http://www.overthegardengate.net/UserPa ... nel&Page=1

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 170755Post ShaunP
Fri Oct 02, 2009 7:52 pm

I put a tunnel up in April and have been chasing to get it set up completley. We have been amazed at how mmuch more we have had compared to spending a simular amount on a greenhouse.

I just looked at the above link. One think that I would recommend is to try to prepare the soil and paths before putting the cover on.

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 170970Post homegrown
Mon Oct 05, 2009 4:01 am

I built my first tunnel out of plumbing pipe and then brought the film separate, worked well saw a photo of door done with plastic and velcro zips
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171014Post healer
Mon Oct 05, 2009 10:21 am

If you are not selling your produce how could you ever get a return of 1000 pounds?

Is the price you are looking at that high because its really big or because it has sides that you can lift? The latter means the whole thing is not held down just because the plastic is dug in the ground for 2 feet! Its a good design but expensive, and the reason why I don't have one in France. Its usually too hot in the summer and if you can't lift the sides you will be having cooked food straight off the plant! But not the same problem in your neck of the woods. Ventilation is always the biggest problem with greenhouses and poly tunnels - you might have a natural advantage there. Aligning the tunnel into the wind may be work well (if the wind is not too strong!!) then you don't need to lift the sides and have a cheaper one.

Have you looked at alternatives - such as why have plastic on all sides. Increasing the termal mass is a good thing and reducing the "wind chill" is good. Can you dig out a bank or make a cob wall? You need the east and south to be exposed but not the north so it would give you something to bulid off - a simple shelter type thing out of plastic or uPVC.

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171037Post MuddyWitch
Mon Oct 05, 2009 2:50 pm

A 12ft wide by 25ft long tunnel, from First Tunnels would be about £450 +£90 p&p to Co Galway or about €600

I have one of their tunnels and would recommend them to every-one. Not only do they sell an excellant product, their after sales is also brilliant. :icon_smile:

I hope this link works http://www.firsttunnels.co.uk/home.asp

MW
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171044Post Odsox
Mon Oct 05, 2009 5:19 pm

I got mine from Polydome in County Offaly - http://www.polydome.ie/, but whatever you get I don't think it will pay for itself in actual money.
Mine is now 3 years old and I honestly couldn't live without it now, at least not and still produce 100% of our vegetables.
Regarding siting and assuming your site is similar to mine, I would definitely NOT follow the advice about pointing it into the wind. Mine is north/south and even when the storm force winds are from the south west I have had the doors blow in, so into the wind would be even worse.
Plus for ventilation I would recommend double doors, that way you can angle them to act as wind scoops or as baffles when the wind is strong, a single door would not allow that.
If you can afford it, get one, you won't regret it especially during the winter months.

Muddywitch, where are you off to in Ireland ?
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171324Post Thurston Garden
Wed Oct 07, 2009 12:36 pm

healer wrote:because it has sides that you can lift? The latter means the whole thing is not held down just because the plastic is dug in the ground for 2 feet!
I would not advocate trenching the plastic on any tunnel. The timber base rail methos is far superior. I have ranted on about it on various polytunnel threads on here lol. In my experience, tunnel sides roll down rather than up to provide ventilation. Fruit tunnels do have very loose polythene which will roll up - only because the plastic is temporarily fixed on to the frame so it is easy to remove in the winter so the plants can get properly chilled. (in the UK anyway).
healer wrote: Aligning the tunnel into the wind may be work well (if the wind is not too strong!!) then you don't need to lift the sides and have a cheaper one.
This is a good alternative. Siting the tunnel on a very slight slope (end to end) allows hot air to escape through the higher end, and colder air to come in the lower end. That said, a tunnel which is not level is quite difficult to water!
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171352Post Colin
Wed Oct 07, 2009 2:35 pm

I find it strange why you have to employ these fixes to acheive what should have been addressed at the design stage. Admittedly siting it on a slope isnt a big problem but you shouldnt have to do it just to get the ventilation upto par. I guess the alternative for those without sloping gardens is to fit an exhaust fan. First tunnels advocate using bubblewrap to insulate too :wink:

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171358Post shell
Wed Oct 07, 2009 2:50 pm

I hope to get a polytunnel soon,just trying to find the right one,but i never thought i could get a return on it?to me growing your own is brilliant but cost wise not that much of a saving,am i wrong? :dontknow:

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171362Post Thurston Garden
Wed Oct 07, 2009 3:17 pm

You will never look back after buying a tunnel. With the correct choice of plants, you can be growing stuff in one all year round. It's unlikely that you will ever get your investment back - the polythene will need replacing every 5 or so years - but can you put a price on the satisfaction of producing the vast proportion of your annual veg?
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171369Post Green Aura
Wed Oct 07, 2009 3:39 pm

Ours is only small - 10'x15' and cost just over £500, because we had to get the thicker frame and crop bars etc. to withstand the gales.

I'm not sure what you have to account for in terms of getting your money back. We've only been here a couple of years and had loads of work to do in the house as well as trying to start a veg garden, so we're not even totally self-sufficient in compost yet (although we get as much seaweed as you like for free :lol: ). But if you factor in the petrol to get to Inverness to buy veg (we can get a very limited amount locally, but it's often limp and past it's best) I reckon ours has already paid for itself.

But even if it never pays for itself, one taste of our tomatoes and who cares :love10: :toothy10: :lol:
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171439Post MuddyWitch
Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:17 pm

I hadn't thought about the pay-back bit;

mine is my potting shed,
somewhere to drink my tea in drizzly weather,
somewhere to hang washing on wet days,
somewhere for the hounds to shelter if the back door slams shut,
somewhere to start my hanging baskets bedding plants etc,
a bike shed for my daughter's friends when they visit,
somewhere to make papier mache logs,
somewhere to overWinter the guinea pigs,
somewhere to dry logs,
somewhere to chop logs in really bad weather,
somewhere to store the garden funiture,
somewhere I can go where my daughter won't follow (too many spiders)

Oh yes, & I grow stuff in it too :lol:

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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171485Post Thurston Garden
Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:06 am

Mine was also a grat place for tinkering on my old land rover on wet days!
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Re: polytunnel advice ?

Post: # 171569Post healer
Thu Oct 08, 2009 2:07 pm

Muddywitch should you be renamed to Muddyleprechaun if you can swing an axe in your polytunnel...or perhaps your polytunnel is tardis like so the witch part would be more appropriate!! :iconbiggrin:

I'm only jealous I don't have 500euros to buy one, although we are making something interesting and hopefully warmer out of cob, scavenged windows and triple UPVC sheets. I'm calling it my potting shed but others are lining up as a conservatory - not too sure I like that - need more then spiders to keep "them" out .....like an ironing board or pink girly things...

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