Using Garden Hoops to Make Shade

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by Finnie, Apr 4, 2015.

  1. Finnie

    Finnie Crowing

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    I thought I would ask in the gardening section, since these are essentially garden tools. But my idea is to try to connect two of the 10' fiberglass wires together to make 20 foot hoops that I could throw some shade cloth over, and have room for my little chicken coop underneath. So does anybody have any experience working with something like this:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RYGBMZA/ref=ox_sc_sfl_title_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A2F5ZTYO1060UD

    How easy would it be to join them together? Would a 20 foot length be too wobbly to make a good arch?

    My other idea for using these would be to make hoops that go over the top of my chain link dog kennel/chicken run. I have some bird netting to put over it, but I need some way to stop the netting from sagging down.

    I thought maybe other gardeners might have some hands on experience with these hoops and be able to advise me about them. Or maybe you know of something that makes better hoops than these.

    Thanks.

    Edit: It seems the link won't open? This is the name of the product- Durahoop, 6FtX25Ft Greenhouse, Frost Protection In Cold Winter, if anybody would be so kind as to look at it on Amazon.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2015
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    I have no experience. I'm guessing that even with the light weight shade cloth, a slight breeze would send your arches sailing. You may be able to save yourself a lot of money, if you're willing to risk it. You can buy flexible PVC tubing at a hardware store. A bit of PVC cement and some fittings, and you'll be in business for a fraction of the cost of the greenhouse stuff. Just be sure you buy the right stuff. Some PVC is quite flexible, and some is more brittle. Again, I think that you're risking collapse with a 20' arch. Maybe you could make it out of metal conduit, or heavier PVC.
     
  3. Finnie

    Finnie Crowing

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    You have a good point about wind. Maybe that's why those things are sized the way they are, low to the ground. I will check the big box stores to see if they have any flexible PVC tubing. At least with that, I could put my hands on it and see what I thought of its potential, instead of just ordering blind from photos.

    Thanks.
     
  4. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Crowing

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    The stuff you posted to is way too thin and flexible.

    One of my neighbors used PVC to make a hoop house on her raised beds. She had a bumper crop of veggies and gave a lot away. We were at almost 7500 feet in elevation and she had to use a machete to chop her way into the greenhouse when she got back from a 1 week vacation that summer. That was her first attempt at gardening and she planted way too many plants, way too close, but she had a ball with it. Her tomato plants maxed out at the height of the greenhouse, about 7 feet tall.
    It lasted all summer and into the winter, but the 60 mph winds one night in January tore the plastic and at below freezing temps, that caused the PVC to break. In retrospect, they said they should have taken it down for the winter, they weren't gardening anyway but just too lazy to take it down and put it back up in spring.
    If you use a T-connector to put two pieces together, then you can connect two arches together with a shorter piece (about 2' long) between for more stability. Plan on arches about 2 feet apart for a good, solid greenhouse.

    My hubby wanted to make one for me out of Aluminum Electrical Conduit - AKA Thin Wall - but we moved before he could.
     
  5. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida

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    Well, how about something like this?

    [​IMG]
    3 cattle panels wired to 8 steel fence posts driven into the ground. Chicken wire over that to keep out birds, then hardware cloth partway up and extending out at the bottom to deter digging predators. Add a couple of cattle panels more than we have here and you should be able to fit a coop inside rather than outside like mine is.

    [​IMG]
    The shade cloth is just landscape fabric tossed over it. On the east side the landscape fabric panels are rolled around metal lathes, so we can roll each panel up or down independently like a window shade, depending on what we need. It's permeable, so rather than a tarp acting like a sail the breezes go through it.

    [​IMG]
    For our cold Wyoming winters, we draped vinyl lattice over it and then greenhouse plastic over that. The lattice kept the plastic from coming in direct contact with the pokey-outy things left from wiring the chicken wire to the panels and prevented them from ripping. In this shot you can see the chick brooder pen set up just to the left.

    [​IMG]


    This design has withstood high winds (60 - 70 mph) and an 8 inch heavy snow load. To get the snow off, we just stood inside and hit the top with the business end of a push broom - snow slid right off. It's tall enough for me and hubby to walk upright for chores, as well. this summer we are going to expand it by one cattle panel - simply take the south end wire welded fence panel off by untwisting the wires, add another fence post on either side, arch the panel, then put the end back on.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. Finnie

    Finnie Crowing

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    It is sounding like pvc or elec conduit will be a better choice than the flimsy wires. It won't be out for the winter, I'm just trying to throw some shade on a small coop I already have, since I noticed the thermometer in there went up to 90, and it was only a nice spring day, not hot mid-summer!
     
  7. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida

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    Oops, then I retract my earlier post! I thought you were looking to build a more permanent run that you could put a coop into....that'll teach me to peruse the forums before my coffee! My apologies for misunderstanding. [​IMG]
     
  8. Finnie

    Finnie Crowing

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    You have some great ideas here I can steal. I love your technical term, "pokey-outey thing". I am familiar with those! [​IMG]

    I will have to price cattle panels at TSC. I'm starting to cook up another plan of making a temp baby coop out of a plastic dogloo, and that will call for a whole new run to go with...
     
  9. Finnie

    Finnie Crowing

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  10. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Crowing

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    Look at adding more ventilation to your coop also. It needs to be ventilated, but not drafty at the roosts. Maybe vents at the ceiling to let that hot air out.
     

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