Examine the practicality of using high tunnels on a rotational basis to increase sustainability on a small acreage.

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2010: $5,200.78
Projected End Date: 12/31/2012
Region: North Central
State: Kansas
Project Coordinator:
Kay Neff
Neff Family Farm

Annual Reports

Information Products


  • Agronomic: potatoes
  • Fruits: berries (strawberries)
  • Vegetables: asparagus, cucurbits, eggplant, radishes (culinary), tomatoes
  • Additional Plants: herbs
  • Animals: poultry


  • Crop Production: conservation tillage
  • Education and Training: farmer to farmer, on-farm/ranch research
  • Energy: solar energy
  • Farm Business Management: marketing management, agritourism
  • Pest Management: biological control, mulches - living
  • Production Systems: integrated crop and livestock systems
  • Sustainable Communities: public participation, social networks

    Proposal summary:

    Problem: • High cost and use of propane in greenhouse used to grow herb and tomato transplants • Managing soil quality and fertility in a chemical free system • Controlling insects in a chemical free system Solution: • 6 plot rotational system (6 20 foot x 24 foot plots) with rotations of herbs, vegetables, chickens and fallow in various combinations of plastic-covered, insect fabric, row covered and uncovered high tunnels, and low tunnels. Chickens will also be introduced into the system at various points for benefits of heating, fertility and insect control. Rising costs of propane heat and the difficulty of transporting manure to the field leads to the probability of creating high tunnels to rotate with poultry, plantings and fallow land. This rotation schedule is designed to improve the land, use natural resources, and create new sustainability. The small farm is a unique place to be able to utilize a wide variety of production techniques on a rotational level, and to quickly adapt to a system that is economical, effective, and easily changed.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.