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Frost protection-our style


 
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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:07 am    Post subject: Frost protection-our style Reply with quote

As previously said on the edge of Phoenix out here in Laveen we get quite a bit colder than you guys down in the center of town get. We easily double the chill hours of central phoenix and see freezes on a very regular basis. So freeze protection is a must for our tropicals.

Thought a thread of different pictures of frost protection might be useful for others looking for ideas.
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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We build a pretty basic 1/2" PVC frame around the trees, trying to leave some extra height for growth. THe PVC in anchored in the ground with rebar stakes pounded in about a foot. Its the same method I use to build hoop greenhouses\shadehouses.

Placed on the ground inside the structure are 1-2 strands of C-9 christmas lights for heat generation. I know some people wrap the trunk but ive always worried about burning the trunk. The heat rises and does a good job of keeping the frost tents above freezing.



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Frost protection-our style


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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over the top of the frames we fit-sew-glue frost cloth. Half of the trees have 1.5 oz commercial frost cloth I got from Bakers and the other half have a breathable material I picked up at a upholstery shop that is meant for the underside of couches and box springs. Its slightly heavier and has been a great all around material for this application. The covers are removable but we leave them on 24/7 except on the hottest days of winter.


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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frost cloth alone even with extra heat is good only for about a degree or two under freezing. As we very regularly get in the 20's extra insulation is needed. Sometimes we just throw a blanket over top of the frost cloth to effectively hold more heat. The blankets add maybe 2 degrees of frost protection. But for those really chilly nights we tarp and then blanket. With these together we are good all the way down to the teens.


Another item that is key to our setup is the temperature controller. It is set at 40 degrees to turn the lights on. Automatic function is so important to piece of mind at a time of night that you are supposed to be sleeping. lol Its been 100% reliable.



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phoenixtropicals
Site Admin


Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 1207
Location: Mesa Arizona

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great information Amadio. Thanks! Probably I've shared this link with you before. I like to buy the 20 x 100 foot roll and cut it into 20x20's.

http://www.berryhilldrip.com/SPD/gg51---1-5-oz--row-cover--80000B6C-1297037245.jsp?submit=View+Sizes%2FOptions
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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 5:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic link! Thanks. I will likely do the same as you next year. Well actually that all depends. If these put on 4 ft of growth this summer....my normal methods of covering aint gonna work. I have some ideas but will cross that bridge when I come to it. Smile
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MKIVRYAN



Joined: 07 Dec 2010
Posts: 154
Location: Phoenix/Scottsdale

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can you take a picture of how the top of the structure is held together? I really like this idea for some of my small trees. Thanks
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myamberdog



Joined: 21 May 2011
Posts: 323
Location: palm springs, california

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the top of the frost structures Amadio builds are a cross shaped, PVC connector piece, into which the PVS pipe is glued in to, from which it then bends to the ground and over the embedded rebar....


myamberwoofie
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MKIVRYAN



Joined: 07 Dec 2010
Posts: 154
Location: Phoenix/Scottsdale

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, So there is a four way split in the top center then it goes into 45's to get the angle headed down to the ground. Easy enough.
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Amadioranch



Joined: 07 Jan 2012
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Exactly. 4 way that goes in to 45's. Easy peasy.
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