2014 Starts Slow!! Passage of the new Farm Bill delayed contracts. However, we're now having orders come in for this season! As you folks probably already know all applications had to be redone after the Farm Bill passed. This delayed contracts from the normal Jan/ Feb start to the first week of June. It may seem this was a big crop disadvantage, but ordering and getting your HT up as soon as possible will still pay dividends on crop yield and an extension of the season into the fall. Just plant your crops as you would inside the footprint of the HT and build over them. It really is not as hard as it may seem.
2013 Still Going!! Some folks are still saying they didn't know about us! Not sure why, but I guess folks aren't looking far enough down the Vendor List to see that we are in Alaska and to call us before they order Outside. Please pass the word to anyone who is gardening, whether on NRCS grant or not. Thanks so much for your support!
2012 Is Here!! We've picked up steam on new prospects! Getting on most of the NRCS offices' example vendors list has really raised the awareness among farmers and market gardeners of our existence! We appreciate everyone passing the word that we have an Alaskan Made product for your needs. Those few NRCS offices that haven't gotten the word from Bob Jones that it is O.K. to let folks know we're here (not endorse, just inform), I will be contacting to give them the word.
We've Moved!! For those who may not have noticed, we moved on 11 Oct 11 to 301 E. Outer Springer Loop, Suite B4 Palmer, AK 99645. We are right next to Mt. McKinley Meats (slaughter house) diagonally across on the left from the back corner of the Alaska State fairgrounds parking lot. (out Springer from Spenard Builders). Same phones and e-mail.
NEW FOR 2011!! All end ribs now come with Welded Tabs!! Originally, I offered zippered curtains for our structures, but early on it was apparent that this did not work so well with the winds we have, especially here in the Mat-Su and up in Delta. Last year I had already stopped supplying curtains and even gave refunds for owners to fund framing the end walls. This year I supply the end poly, either 11 mil woven poly or 6 mil greenhouse poly, and the owner builds the frame end. Much better for everyone in the long run. Soooo .... to make that easier we are welding tabs on the end ribs to provide lag screws or bolts solid, positive connection to the framed end wall. That costs some money and I'm not aware of any other manufacturer that is doing this. The most I've seen are brackets that are bolted to a band clamp, but these interfere with the poly securing mechanism. I believe this will be a very good feature that will facilitate the removal of the end walls for driving through equipment and/ or ends removal for winter protection/ storage along with storing the cover poly.
LATE WINTER 2011. First high tunnel of the 2011 season! We've sold a 24' X 64' unit in the Settlers' Bay area out KGB Road in Wasilla. We've also already had several queries for 20 ft and 30 ft structure quotes. Steel and transportation prices for components are both up this year (three steel price increases since Fall 2010), but we're still competitively priced.
ALSO, New steel roller allows larger radius bends. Our partners at The Fence Emporium here in Palmer have acquired a new steel rolling mill that allows larger radius bends for the side wall to roof run corners. This will further strengthen the two/ three piece rib design of our structures and allow them to bend all of our "hoop" structures as well.
WINTER 2011. We've had our first casualty. Although our high tunnel structures are only intended for seasonal use, inevitably some will leave their poly covers on over the winter. One of our 30 ft. structures was left with the cover on while the owner was away for weeks Outside. As fortune would have it, a wet snow accumulated on the structure followed by freezing rain or sleet and - the "hat trick" - a 40-50 mph wind hit it. It went down. Seasonal high tunnel structures are not warranted for snow or wind loading hazard - mine or anyone else's. Whoever you buy from, please know the limitations and manage your units accordingly.
FALL OF 2010. Thank you for your support! Well, our first season has ended and I'm pretty happy with the results. We've sold nine units from Delta Junction down to Soldotna and out to Aniak. I have been surprised at the number of prospects for a 30 ft wide high tunnel - a result of the availability of NRCS grant monies. I was not aware of this program when I made the decision to go into production here in Alaska and the program has brought out opportunists that were not in the business before selling Outside products on commission to cash in. We have high hopes of reaching backyard hobbyists and market gardeners that fund their own structures as well as garnering a greater share of the NRCS assisted projects.