Managing risks in a greenhouse

Commercial cultivation under cover in a professional polytunnel

Under cover cultivation in a professional polytunnel is an increasingly common view on farms. Growers opt for this kind of solution in relation with the profitability of such a venture. Greenhouses protect plants against frost, low temperatures and extend the growing season. The favorable microclimate under the foil leads to a first class, fully mature crop, well adapted to the demanding market. Although it is still winter at the time of writing this article, we are getting closer to spring every day. The sun will soon emerge from the clouds to heat up the greenhouses. For every polytunnel owner, it is a sign that the season is about to start. For new growers, this represents a year full of challenges.

Professional polytunnel

A polytunnel is a tool that is easier to use for experienced gardeners. During the whole cultivation process, there are many situations requiring quick reaction to avoid damage. There are many potential hazards related to energy supply, fertilizers, equipment maintenance and harvesting devices. When managing a structure, focus on several important issues:

  • Threats in a foil tunnel

A greenhouse, like any structure, must meet fire safety standards, as well as health and safety rules. While complying with the law, it is worth ensuring that the safety rules are carefully supervised. To do this, train employees, pay attention to the risks, and clarify what could trigger tricky situations. It is also worth having a back up plan, with steps to implement if a given crisis occurs.

  • Safe work under cover

Under the cover, humidity is constantly high and tend to accumulate on the foil, as well as on the sides. It is worth taking care of paths, making sure there are no obstacle, inequalities or impurities along the route. This will prevent any slips, trips and falls.

  • Equipment and accessories in the greenhouse

A significant part of the technology that supports growing crops relies on electricity. However, to prevent electrical installations from being exposed to moisture, they must be insulated. As far as all switches and power sources are concerned, it is worth organizing them with a straight access. In a situation where every second counts, visible and easily accessible switches facilitate safety operations.

  • Employees in polytunnels

These days, qualified employees have become extremely valuable, and their absence is quickly felt. It is worth ensuring optimal conditions for work. Storage of equipment should be organized in such a way to allow quick preparation of the necessary set of tools. Workers will have to clean them after use, and put them back onto their designated stand.
When delegating people, it is worth dividing them into groups, as well as assigning a superior. Often with professional foil tunnels, duties are performed with work outfits specially designed for horticultural work. This reduces chances of pathogens inside the tunnel, allows easier location of employees, and also protects them when using cleaning agents, fertilizers, etc.

  • Microclimate under cover

Crops, depending on the species and variety, benefit from perfect conditions for growth. The closer you get to this optimal environment, the better the results. To monitor temperature, watering, light intensity, etc., sensors are used to support growth during cultivation. With knowledge of the conditions required under cover, you can manage sprinklers, ventilation of the greenhouse and heating of the facility. When cultivating commercially, the owner’s goal is to reduce production costs while maintaining efficiency. In order to do this, one should invest in proven solutions, as well as undergo training.

  • Frame of agricultural tents

The structure of an agricultural polytunnel is of great importance in terms of durability.

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