Our First 30x96x6 Organic High Tunnel built 2016

Blue Mills Farm Spring 2017

High Tunnel Progress Report
Ron Lindell

Quick Cuts Greens Harvester 
may be needed soon!
(Dream Goal)

(Click on Pictures to make larger)
 I was thinking on how to place Trusses up onto the posts safely!  Forrest (16) and I tried to lift one end truss up to the posts and our mission failed due to being top heavy!  Whew!  We needed something safe.  I created a solution that worked and was safe! We made a jig for my tractor loader.

Our Organic High Tunnel

Above & Below Pictures taken on very cold frosty morning!
 Winter Crops were a success!
The crops survived through extreme cold due to Row Cover Pro 50.
This picture was taken December 29th, 2016
Yum! Salad!

SPRING 2017 Pictures

L3800 Kubota HST

30x96x6 High Tunnel,
East to West
Inside Rear Tire measurement is perfect for 30" beds for planting.
Earthway Seeder works better when walking fast!
Inside High Tunnel w/ Drip Irrigation

Small greenhouse built for less than $225.
Craigslist Free Windows from homes and Free Deck boards.
Cost was 2x6 roof and marine paint.

Home made hoe for small weeds

New screens made from separate pieces purchased from Home Depot.
Less than $16. for three windows.
Early Spring 2017 Pictures

High Tunnel Assembly Pictures 2016

 Our last W Truss.
 We did 15 Trusses in five hours!  The last few trusses were only taking 10-12 minutes each!
Breaks?  NO, I don't take breaks.  I allow my sons to have breaks and trust me, they did their share of messing around.  They are Teenagers!

 Notice the T-Posts on South side of High Tunnel:  Due to grade I had to support each post so that it would not move while installing trusses.  Worked really nice! Drilled hole in each end of boards and placed them between posts and t-posts. It worked!

Forrest mowing down on other end before placing posts.
I started on East end because I wanted to make sure we were over 30' from property line.
Rented Laser Level for week to assure everything was perfect before Truss assembly.

Forrest and Colton taking a break from pounding in posts by hand pounder.
Without a side brace on South side the post could not handle the flex on first truss.  Due to grade the South side posts are not in the ground enough to withstand pressure alone.  To bring post back to level I had to dig 3' hole and place a wood post in ground, then ratchet strap until post was level.
I had to the same thing to the North side. "Live and Learn"
 Above picture shows North side post made level by using a post in the ground.

We did the recommended Jig to assemble trusses, however, when removing trusses from Jig they expanded out past the 30'.  Before installing each truss on posts we used fence wire and ratchet to bring in each side to 30'.  Then we installed each truss before removing the wire & ratchet.
A little extra work, however, it looks really nice!  Well worth the little extra effort!

The next HT I assemble I already have a better solution with more safety.

 ONLY 32.5 Working Hours so far on HT at this stage, which includes good start on Purlins.
 This above picture shows the Purlin clamps pre-screwed. That Rigid 18volt Lithium Impact works really, really nice!! (picture below)  On this picture one may be able to see the pink string that goes the length of the HT marking each side purlin.

 Above picture shows a couple purlins installed at the peak. 

 By using claw on hammer, Punch each pipe as I feed them into side curtain.  Curtains are pre cut which makes things a little easier.
 Jena loves to help Daddy build.
 Ready for side curtains, Doors, End Plastic, then Top Plastic.
 Forrest cutting C Channel.  Then we filed ends to make smooth.
 Inside Rope installed.  Inside Rope keeps curtain from blowing into HT.
 Great place to play football! :-)
 C Channel installed on Truss.  Wiggle Wire holds plastic into place.

 Ran tight string as guide for top nails to install inside rope.
 View from our garden looking South. HT runs East -West.  Ran East-West for additional sun for winter crops.
 Angle Pulley for side curtain cable.  Winch is installed on inside.
 Winch on inside of HT.  One winch per side.
Video available via email which shows how side curtains work.

 Directions for drip lines in HT
 Drip Line pieces
 Drip Line Holes point up toward bottom of Plastic Mulch

Jena also loves hanging with Dad in the HT.  It is warmer in there!
e.g. Thankfully I don't have anything planted yet:  This morning the inside of the HT was 112 degrees. The temp outside was 70 degrees.
 NOTE: Next year, all of the HT will be weedless with Plastic Mulch.
This roll is a Winter Crop Test for us.

 My Dream finish product
 Chocolate Cake look on tilled dirt
 Son Hunter standing at East end of finished HT
 HT with side curtains down a little on south side

 C Channel installed
 Forrest cutting C Channel from Truss
 Below I tilled several layers deep to create water run off trench
Ground Cover creates no growth

 Yes. I had a slight grade.
Note: When tilled inside I cant notice the grade. Tilling fluffed the dirt.
 PLASTIC!!  Two 40'x100' sheets to pull over HT for dual plastic

 Forrest creating ropes to plastic

 Used 4 C Channels, Wiggle wires and rope to snap in both sheets of plastic.
Yes, we pulled both sheets at one time and took 11 great people to help!
Thank you to the Lindell Family, Mike & Wendy, Donnie & Cathy and Chet!
You are awesome people!!
 112lbs per sheet
 Placed out an extra 12' Ground cover to keep two layers of plastic clean.

Notice on 2nd Truss: Deflector from Blower creating air between layers of roof plastic. Two layers doubles cold weather protection, extends plastic life from wind and protects from most hail storms and high wind storms.

BLOWER operates 24/7 to provide air gap between two layers of plastic.
Expanded plastic extends plastic life from wind damage and other benefits.

 Rigid Impact with 5/16" Milwaukee Shock Proof Driver. A battery charge lasts a long time.
Nearly 72 Tex Screws per charge.

Other Farm Projects: 30x40 Pole Garage
Hay Loft
 Deer Stand

NEED Help building a High Tunnel?
Please call me!
I can be your Helper or we can Assemble your High Tunnel.

Need Helper building a pole garage?
Please call me!
I want to thank our son Forrest (16), Hunter (15), London (14), Colton (13), Jena (12) and Lorrie.
Each family member contributed by measuring, holding, pounding, drinks, lunches, dinners, humor and snacks!


Ron's Hobby