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Stock panels for plants

 
Mike Hamilton
Posts: 82
Location: north end of the Keweenaw Mi.
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I use to use concrete wire for tomato baskets for many years before I started the hugelbeds

I was thinking about stock panels for the plants to clime on

bent so they arch over the beds and also can be used with plastic for early season weather protection over the plants [grow tunnel]

the concern is all I have been able to find is galvanized coated panels and what about leaching

I know welding galvanize is dangerous, what about it leaching into the soil off the wire

staking the plants last year did not work because they got too big for the stakes and fell over [tomatoes did awesome for the first year hill]

any ideas will be help full

Mike
 
alex Keenan
Posts: 485
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I have used one panel for roses for over a decade. The roses seem to grow well on the panel. I do not know about the Zinc issue.
However, people use galvanized tomato hoops for many decades and no issues that I am aware of.
 
R Scott
Posts: 3304
Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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I don't think zinc is a leaching concern in a normal setting. An extreme pH may change that. I will take zinc over aluminum any day.
 
james Apodaca
Posts: 57
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I use zinc galvanized steel cattle panels to trellis malabar spinach, pole beans and sweet potato (although I wish I could keep the sweet potato off of it) without any noticeable detriment to the plants.

Being that Zinc is a required mineral in our bodies.. I'll take a pole bean from a zinc galvanized trellis over a supermarket pole bean any day.
 
Peter Ellis
Posts: 1268
Location: Central New Jersey
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The problem with welding galvanized steel is the zinc is put into the air. Breathe it in and you get a nasty pneumonia. Known as metal fume fever and can be fatal.
 
Kelly Smith
Posts: 693
Location: In a rain shadow - Fremont County, Southern CO
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i mounted a cattle panel to the west side of our milk parlor in hopes that i can grow some vine up it to help with shading.

as others have mentioned - i have seen these used for trellis and i have eaten the food that grew on them.
i also agree with R Scott - pH extremes would be the only reason to worry about leaching - at which point the plant in question is likely dead


cattle/stock panels are one of my favorite building materials around the farm - i say go for it!
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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There is nothing wrong or dangerous about using galvanized steel in gardening.
It would take a soil pH so Low that the ground would be barren for zinc to leech from the metal.

Since I doubt you would be welding two panels together you should have no problem using a cattle panel in the manner you described.

Where the zinc meets soil, some formation of zinc oxide could occur if all conditions were just right, that would simply become incorporated into the soil and increase the available zinc in that specific area.
 
Mike Hamilton
Posts: 82
Location: north end of the Keweenaw Mi.
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wen in doubt ,,ask,, before ya get in trouble

thank you every one for the postings and info

the main reason I asked was due to the poor quality of the coating on the panels, the bottom were they dipped the panels is gobbed with galvanize [3/8'' dia]

the plan is to bend the panel into a A frame and straddle the bed [using a 'hickey' to make the bend] then cover with 6 mill plastic to get an early start

our growing season is short here so the panels will be dual purpose

as of 2/25 we have had 226'' of snow fall [50'' behind last year] so permanent hoop house's get flattened as the norm also another green house is in the plans

Mike
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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chicken dog forest garden hugelkultur hunting toxin-ectomy
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Those will work really well for your situation. That clumping you mention is where the electrodes were clamped to the wire.

I like them for our hoop houses here in Arkansas, they hold the plastic covers really well in the winds we get on Buzzard's Roost (I use clips I made out of soft copper tubing to hold the plastic on).
 
Dan Grubbs
Posts: 495
Location: northwest Missouri, USA
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Can you post photos of your hoop houses, Bryant? And close up of your copper clamp, too?
 
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