Monday, 25 April 2016

Tunnel vision

The frame is up
Last week was the week of the polytunnel construction. Since there were 2.5 days without wind forecast (!) we were determined to get it erected. Just the week before we'd decided to locate the polytunnel (20ft by 8ft) in the veg garden rather than in the southwest corner of the top paddock. This had several advantages: the ground was already almost level, water access was easier, shelter probably better and it wouldn't spoil the view.

The bit that took the longest was getting the anchors correctly positioned and the right angles established at all corners. Very faffy, with a lot of tying of string, measuring, moving the string slightly, measuring again, moving rocks out of the way etc. Getting the cover on (which we'd been dreading) was easy by comparison.

Tucking in the cover
Securing the cover around the door
Of course, as so often happens with self-assembly stuff, there were several bits missing so we couldn't complete the sliding door on the last windless day. But the manufacturer (Northern Polytunnels) sent the missing parts immediately and the next day we'd finished the tunnel - just in time for 30 tomato plants to move in.

The finished product
The first residents
The grapevine has moved in, too
A thorough feline inspection came back with full marks.

Domino approves
Other animals were taking it easy in the meantime.

Cosy dust bath for three
The three days of focused polytunnel construction meant that we'd fallen behind with everything else and it's felt a bit as if we were training for the Good Life Iron Man to get caught up. Maybe we should run a Good Life Iron Man here. The disciplines could be: saw, split and stack a log; scythe 50 square metres; dig over 10 square metres; weed two vegetable beds; pot up 100 seedlings; mill 1kg of grain into flour.


  1. It looks really grand! What else will fit in? I know that at the beginning one says, "Everything!" but it usually doesn't work out that way... Will you have in any big containers?

    1. Not sure yet. Thinking of putting in four cucumbers in large pots as well, plus the peppers, and a lot of the bigger seedlings (tomatillos, achochas) until they can be planted out. That's it full for the summer and autumn, I should think. Then salads and overwintering brassica over the winter and early crops such as carrots and beetroot from late February on.