Foil tunnels – foil frames

foil inspectorCostly frames are more and more often replaced with foil covers. There are small tunnels with a ready-made structure of various dimensions on the market. The cost of purchasing the tunnel will be recovered at the latest in the second year of use. Of course, it is cheaper to make a wire structure yourself. Diameter wire 5 mm is cut into lengths 150 cm and bends the arches with the spacing of the shoulders 50 cm. They are stuck into the ground at a distance of no more than 50 cm, because otherwise, under the pressure of rainwater, the foil could hang. The structure can be reinforced by connecting the poles with strings or a ridge made of wire or thin tube. A polyethylene foil of a thickness can be stretched over such a structure 0,1 mm, produced in the form of wide sleeves 1 m. The edges of the foil are covered with earth, lest the wind break it, at the ends of the tunnel it is fastened to the rails with clothespins. At the top of the tunnel, approx. 150 cm, which are tied to pegs driven into the ground – by lifting them, the tunnel is aired.

Specific climatic conditions arise in foil tunnels, as the water vapor condenses on the inside of the foil and falls onto the plants. This allows you to limit watering, but frequent airing is necessary. The cauliflowers and lettuce in the tunnel are ready to be harvested at 2pm…17 days earlier, and cucumbers and tomatoes ripen at 10…25 days earlier.

A simpler method is to cover the beds with a flat foil of thickness 0,05 mm. The edges of the foil are strengthened with stones and earth. This prevents airing, but you can that way, right after sowing, accelerate the germination itself. When the emergence is visible, the foil should be removed. Such a procedure allows you to speed up the harvest of radish by 10…12 days.

Flat foil can also be used to cover the seedling beds, but you need to make openings for air exchange with the environment. Film sleeve, after unrolling from the roll, folds repeatedly into a square with a side equal to the width of the sleeve, and then, using a punch or other device, holes are made in the film at intervals of 12…15 cm. The holes should be 10 in diameter…12 mm.

The soil mulching effect also has the effect of accelerating the cultivation, consisting in lining the rows with peat, straw, chaff, paper, black foil. Thanks to the mulch layer, the temperature and moisture content of the soil do not fluctuate much, the growth of weeds is inhibited, the plants are isolated from soil pathogens, and the fruit is protected against soiling.

Heated beds are used to grow cucumbers and melons, made of manure laid in a hollow, in the form of a shaft with a width of 30…40 and a height of 20…25 cm. The shaft is covered with a 15 cm thick layer of earth…20 cm, in which plants are planted. The year-round cultivation of vegetables is possible thanks to a small greenhouse connected to a central heating system or equipped with an independent heating device. Such greenhouses are made of lightweight materials, like aluminum tubes, viniculture, wood and covered with foil or glass. Foundations may be brick, concrete or metal, allowing the entire greenhouse to be moved or moved on rails. Building such a greenhouse, however, requires a lot of skill, you can also buy it ready-made.