Greenhouse Owners: Tips for Severe Winter Weather

With another foot of snow expected in the next few days in some parts of New York, it’s time to read up on some tips for dealing with severe winter weather on farms.

To Minimize Wind Damage to Greenhouses:

  • Remove loose objects from the area (including weak tree limbs)
  • Close all openings to the greenhouse
  • Open the blower’s intake valve on air inflated greenhouses to increase the inflation pressure
  • Consider planting windbreaks.

Click here for more info about preventing greenhouse damage.

If Your Greenhouse Has Minimal Damage:

  • Prop up greenhouse frame to prevent further collapse
  • Add additional bracing (diagonal at corners)
  • Check and tighten frame connections
  • Repair glazing
  • Close doors and vents
  • Open drain pipes
  • Provide temporary heat to keep plants from freezing
  • Check and repair heating/electrical/water systems.

If your greenhouse sustains major structural damage:

  • Support frame members for safe entry
  • Cut poly if necessary to reduce load on structure
  • Clear aisles
  • Remove plants to temporary structures or alternate location
  • Drain water system
  • Cover heating/cooling and materials handling equipment with tarps

With any greenhouse damage, start by shutting off power, gas, and water supplies and take lots of pictures.

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