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High Tunnels: A Solution to Farmer's Crop Growth Challenges

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Sonia Heckler

on 6 April 2017

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Transcript of High Tunnels: A Solution to Farmer's Crop Growth Challenges

High Tunnels: One Solution to Small Farmers' Crop Growth Challenges
My Committee
Farmers
Stephanie McAfee
Doug Boyle
Kerri Jean Ormerod
Peter Weisberg
Custom Gardens: Ray and Virginia Johnson
Desert Farming Initiative: Ray Saliga and Jennifer Ott
Lattin Farms: Rick Lattin
Snyder Farms: Jim Snyder
River School: Tom Stille and Kait Crowley
Veggie for Kids: Staci Emm and Judy Halterman
Driscoll's, Spain
Italy
Canada
Why farmers invest
in high tunnels?
Advantages
Versatile
Season Extension
Other reasons:
Higher production and types of crops grown
Mitigate Nevada's harsh climate
Helped increase farms economic viability
Wind protection
Season extension
Pest protection
Climate modification
Other reasons:
Grow year around
Keeping snow off of crops
Cooling crops using shade cloth
Increased crop yield, variety and quality
Disadvantages
Cost
Wind damage
More labor intensive
Other reasons:
Timing when to open/close or add/remove cover
Higher insect pressure
Upkeep and maintenance especially at a large scale
Managing heat in the summer
Can not grow sprawling crops:
Cantaloupe and Squash
High tunnels help small farmers to...
Increased yields to sell
Able to sell in winter or for a longer period of time
Better quality crop to sell
Veggies for Kids
Federally funded school garden program
addressing food access
"I think it’s important for people and kids to know where their food comes from. It doesn't come from Safeway."
Relatively inexpensive
Simple
High Tunnels (Hoop Houses)
Small farmers in Nevada have been investing in high tunnels for decades.
Increasing in popularity,
even as research takes place.
Looking for applied research to help them manage their high tunnels.
Northern Nevada farmers are growing...
radishes
turnips
beets
various green varieties
bok choy
arugula
cucumbers
peppers
eggplant
tomatoes
spinach
chard
asparagus
beans
broccoli
cabbage
carrots
garlic
herbs
onion
peas
potatoes
sweet potatoes
ginger
turmeric
raspberries
blackberries
Local Food
Sonia Heckler, University of Nevada, Reno
Challenges in the High Desert
16 cm
1 m
Desert Farming Initiative
Used extensively around the world...
Lattin Farms Facebook
Lattin Farms Facebook
All farmers recommended high tunnels.
Operative Temperature
"Sometimes people ask me, why do you want to grow food year around, and I say because I like to eat year around."
On whether high tunnels play a role in surviving as a business...
"Amen! You wouldn't be in this business [without them]."
Images that are not my own:
Goole maps/Google images
Graphs: R Programming
Full transcript