As farmers and growers ourselves, we know that you do the best you can to provide the optimal growing environment for your plants.
But with so many factors to consider, simply keeping track of your greenhouse conditions—and making quick adjustments as needed—can be a daunting, if not impossible task.
Fortunately, there’s one major new development in greenhouse technology that can deliver serious results for your crops, all while reducing the burden on you and your staff: automated roll-up side curtains.
By automating your greenhouse’s roll-up curtains, you can significantly improve your ability to provide exactly the growing environment your plants need to thrive, while drastically reducing the hands-on labor required to do so. Here’s a closer look at some of the benefits, and how you can get your greenhouse outfitted with automated roll-up sides for the next growing season.
Save Time, Save Effort, & Boost Your Harvest
When it comes to environmental controls in your greenhouse, automation really can be the key to reducing manual labor, improving harvests, and truly providing the best environment for your plants to grow their best.
Save Yourself Some Mental (and Physical) Energy
Picture this: it’s a cool, breezy morning, but the sun is shining without a cloud in the sky. Outside your greenhouse, the temperature is going to stay fairly low; inside, however, things are going to heat up pretty quickly.
As a grower, with only so much time in the day, you may only visit your greenhouse to manually adjust your roll-up sides once or twice a day. While that may still be a lot of effort on your part, it might not produce the optimal environment for your plants during the entire course of the day.
By utilizing automated roll-up sides, however, an environmental control system can make small, gradual adjustments over the course of the day. Responding to a greenhouses’ internal temperature, automated roll-up sides can lift by just a few inches or so with each motion, allowing the system to maintain steady temperatures without requiring constant manual labor.
Providing The Best Possible Environment For Your Crops
It’s only natural for greenhouse growers to focus on harvest size, but one largely overlooked factor in many greenhouses is harvest quality—and automated roll-up sides can help achieve both.
Because an automated roll-up side curtain system can make such seamless adjustments to changing outdoor conditions, it can easily maintain the optimal temperature, humidity level, and light level for your crops inside the greenhouse through any conditions. That will not only help save you time, but will also improve the overall size and quality of your harvests.
Look at it this way: if your crops only have access to their ideal growing environment for a few hours a day, they’ll likely be relatively stunted compared to crop kept in the ideal environment, all day long. The result: bigger harvests and better quality, all with a lot less labor needed on a day-to-day basis.
This improvement in overall yield offers an ROI on automated roll-up sides that most gardeners and greenhouse growers can achieve in a single year.
A Quick ROI: Let’s Look At The Math
An investment in automated roll-up sides from Rimol—which includes the controller itself, as well as two low-voltage motors (which do not require a contractor to install)—comes in at just under $1,500 per greenhouse.
Say you’re using your greenhouse to grow tomatoes. Your greenhouse—a standard size high tunnel—fits around 300 tomato plants, with each plant producing somewhere around 20 lbs of tomatoes each season. You sell this harvest at a local farmer’s market for $5 per pound.
In order to make back the investment in your automated roll-up sides, all you need to add is around 1 lb of tomatoes per plant over the entire course of your growing season.
By utilizing the intelligent growing environment and seamless environmental controls offered by automated roll-up sides, many of our past customers have been able to quickly and efficiently increase their per-plant output—and meet this ROI—in one season or less.
How To Make Automated Roll-Up Sides Work For Your Greenhouse
We’ve helped a lot of greenhouse owners outfit their structures with automated roll-up sides in the past, and we’ve found that most fall into one of two groups:
- Installing roll-up sides for the first time, or
- Upgrading from manual roll-up sides to automated
Fortunately, we’ve seen it all—from brand-new growers looking to outfit their backyard greenhouse to large, multi-structure upgrades designed and delivered at scale. Here’s a look at how we make it happen.
New Installation of Automated Roll-Up Sides
Because our automated roll-up sides utilize a low-voltage DC motor, installing a new system on an existing greenhouse is easy, efficient, and does not require a contractor by utilizing a simple-to-install environmental control system provided by Rimol Greenhouse Systems..
In most cases, our sales team can help you clearly understand your environmental control requirements, and get your automated roll-up sides set up for easy remote operation for maximum positive impact on your greenhouse environment.
Upgrade From Manual To Automated
If you’ve already integrated roll-up sides into your greenhouse but have not made the leap to an automated system, our team can provide exactly the game plan you need to bring your greenhouse into the 21st century.
In most cases, installing the automated roll-up system is as easy as connecting your manual setup to a motor, and connecting the motor to your environmental controls system. Once this is in place, we can help you calibrate your system to achieve the perfect environment or whatever you’re growing.
Customer Story: Farmer Kev’s
As we’ve talked to our customers on the ground about how they use automated roll-up sides in their greenhouse, one thing became clear from the start: this tool has definitely become a “must-have” for many busy farmers.
Take, for example, Kevin Leavitt of Farmer Kev’s Organic Farm located in West Gardner, ME. We recently spoke to Farmer Kev about how he uses his automated roll-up sides to manage temperatures and conditions across multiple greenhouses, for multiple plants, across every season.
Farmer Kev is no stranger to the benefit of roll-up sides. When Farmer Kev’s Organic Farm was just getting started, Kevin’s team was working in just one greenhouse, which was outfitted with manual roll-up sides. But it wasn’t until they added two more greenhouses to the farm—each, this time, with electricity—that automated roll-up sides first entered their workflow. Since then, it’s become something of a prerequisite for their greenhouses.
“The biggest reason for the auto rolls is security, in the sense that it lets a busy farmer make sure the greenhouse is at the right temperature for the plants all day long,” said Farmer Kev.
“If you’re doing your roll-up sides manually, it can be tough to be in there multiple times a day adjusting to changing temps—and the biggest thing is to not forget, otherwise you could come back to an overheated greenhouse and a bunch of dead plants. With the auto rolls, you can set the ideal temperature and essentially let the greenhouses manage themselves.”
The result: more consistent temperatures throughout the day, leading to faster growth and crop production on the ground. For Farmer Kev, that’s helped him cut down the grow time on lettuce crops by about 5 days, further helping to support his year-round growing schedule.
When You’re Ready, We’re Here To Help
Our team members are no strangers to the immediate impacts of automated roll-up sides. In fact, most of us already use them at our home greenhouses, and we’ve certainly helped our fair share of customers find success with this simple (yet efficient) greenhouse improvement.
If you’re ready to outfit your greenhouse with automated roll-up sides—or if you’re just interested in learning more about the solutions we can offer—we’d love to chat. Get in touch with our sales team and get ready to save yourself time, save yourself effort, and boost your harvests all with one easy upgrade.