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Automatic sidewall opener

From Chris Wien, Department of Horticulture, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.

Here’s a video showing the sidewall of our new high tunnel in Freeville being opened by an automatic opener mechanism devised by our farm manager, Steve McKay. He is operating it manually in the video, but normally it is connected to a thermostat that has adjustable temperature settings for opening and closing.

The mechanism is battery-operated, and was invented by high tunnel grower Howard Hoover in Yates County. It is available for sale from him. Note that the sides of this tunnel are lowered to open, and therefore protect the plants from the outside temperature and wind when partially open. Another advantage of this system is that the opener mechanism is inside the high tunnel, protected from the weather.

Contact info for Howard Hoover:

Howard Hoover Family Farm
2849 Swartout Road
Penn Yan NY 14527
315-536-3192

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