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11 July 2023

How can I cover my headland-driveway?

How can I cover my headland-driveway?

As a grower of soft fruit as well as hard fruit, it is sometimes necessary to cover the headland-driveway as well. You want to protect your orchard against birds or insects, etc. A good solution for this is to completely cover the orchard with hail nets or insect nets.

But if you let the nets run or hang directly down at the beginning and end of the rows, it will bother you when you want to spray the trees with your tractor or mow the lawn. So one solution to that is to include the headland, or weed field, in the protecting system.

In this blog, I want to discuss further the different ways to roof the headland. And the options in doors, curtains and the like to be able to drive into the fruit protection system.

Different ways to cover your headland-driveway

Covering with insect net

Especially in the case of cherry growers, we see an increasing choice to cover the headlands with insect netting.

Ensure that you use the appropriate insect net for this purpose. Read our blog on the mesh size needed to stop the Suzuki fruit fly. Read here!

Covering with concrete posts

This option can be used well when headlands need to be roofed and where concrete posts are chosen and no space is available for anchoring.

The following photo illustrates how this kind of headland can be set up. Thus, minimal space is sacrificed and the headland turning space remains almost the same. When using concrete posts, we strongly recommend using compression tubes between the 2 concrete posts. As a concrete pile can mainly resist compressive forces, the pressure tube ensures that the concrete pile can also withstand lateral forces.

kersenkap

In the case of this project, as pictured, insect netting was used. But this application can also be built with hail nets. Hail nets can be applied when the orchard only needs to be protected from birds.

Covering with wooden posts

In the case of wooden posts, the pressure tube as shown in the above option can be omitted. However, very good quality wooden posts should be used because the forces will put pressure on the elasticity of the posts.

Of course, you can still choose to use a pressure tube even with wooden posts, or anchor the posts. This still adds an extra force, making the system even more resistant to wind and the like.

kopakker kersenkap

We have published a blog where we elaborate on the types of wooden posts suitable for canopies. Read all about wooden posts as the basis for fruit canopies here.

Covering with foil and insect net

When an orchard is newly planted, more headland options are often available. In this situation, many fruit growers choose to cover the headland with foil. This also protects the trees between the last post and the anchor from rain and other weather influences.

kopakker blauwe bessen

The photo below clearly shows how the foil continues over the windrow and that the outside is fitted with hail nets. Of course, the hail netting can also be replaced by insect nets.

Conclusion

The choice of 1 of these 3 options depends mainly on the layout of the current orchard.

Do you want to cover an existing orchard and is the headland not large enough to accommodate an anchor spacing of 3 metres? Then we recommend covering it with an insect net.

But if you want to plant a new orchard, we recommend covering with film. Especially with the installation of the system, you can save time, as you cover the entire length of the rows with film. This way, the work can continue until the end of the row.

So how do I enter my system?

Of course, it is necessary to be able to drive your tractor into the system. There are also various options for this. For example, prefab sliding doors, roller gates or a simple curtain or other ways can be used to enable tractor entry.

Option 1 a sliding door

The sliding door is an option that works well on cherry canopies built on a steel structure. Think of traditional cherry canopies. The cost of sliding doors is higher and careful attention must be paid to the 'level' mounting of the door during installation. But once the door is mounted, it gives a solid entrance to the system.

schuifdeur regenkap

Option 2 a rolling door

One common solution is the use of a roller gate. This allows the entire length of the net to be rolled up easily. With the roller gate, you can choose whether a covered turning area/headland is still necessary. Because the roller gate can open all rows at once.

Rolpoort kersenkap

Option 3 a simple curtain

In many cases, the system is delivered with a simple curtain. So that the net can easily be pushed aside when you want to enter the canopy. This can often be done simply with a piece of hail netting or insect net, with little extra material cost. Making a curtain does, of course, cost extra assembly hours.

There are several options in making a curtain. For example, one that rises when you pull a rope. Or a curtain that slides to the side when you pull the insect net.

regenkap

Conclusion

From all the choice of doors, gates and curtains, we see in practice that a curtain is the most common choice. It is often applied at 2 corners of the plot, making it possible to enter the system from different points.



Jared Zoutewelle - EN

Jared Zoutewelle

Export manager
My mission is to help as many fruit growers as possible get a good harvest.
So that fruit damage can be prevented, no delivery problems occur,
and that fruit growers can harvest successfully!


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