Polyhouse farming is a method in which a house or similar structure is made using something transparent like glass or polyethylene. The climatic conditions are controlled to grow plants with a varied size of the structure. It is possible to grow vegetables throughout the winters using this method.They are even easy to build, but people choose to get them constructed professionally. It is an age-old practice for self-sufficiency. The idea behind this technique is that plants protect each other when grown in close proximity. Polyhouse farming is much more economical than glasshouse or greenhouse farming.
Advantages of Polyhouse Farming
This method of farming protects the crops from external climatic factors like rain, wind, precipitation, and more. It helps to maximize the profit using a very limited area for cultivation making it efficient. It also gives quality crops with a very low cost involved and pests become a very insignificant problem. It reduces the dependency on labour and along with that reduces the labour cost. It yields significantly more than the open-air cultivation techniques and even has a less cropping period.
Some of the crops that can be grown using this method are fruits like Papaya and Strawberry. Vegetables including Coriander, Onion, Cabbage, Spinach, Radish etc. and flowers like Carnation, Rose, Marigold, Orchid etc.
The polyhouse technique essentially has three categories, namely, low tech system, medium tech system and hi-tech system. The low-tech system builds this polyhouse system with low-cost material and easy to operate and handle. The construction of polyhouse in this category takes place with some local materials like, wood and bamboo. Ultra Violet (UV) film, which is generally used as a cladding material, is used. This category is optimum in the cold climate set up.There is reasonable control over the shade networks, temperature and humidity.No other regulated devices are used in this category. It costs aroundRs.400 to Rs.500/square meter.
In the medium tech polyhousesystem,the polyhouse frame is attached to the ground to face any damage from the wind flowing in the direction, and screws are mounted to the housing structure of the canopy cover. Cooling pads, thermostats, mist sensors, and exhaust fans are used to control the temperature and humidity in this structure. dry and composite weather conditions are also suitable for this structure of polyhouse farming. In the plant life cycle, when they come to a phase where more care is required this system proves to be very useful. It costs Rs.900 to Rs.1200/square meter.
Hi-tech polyhouse creates a perfect set up at all times for growing crops for an automatic temperature, humidity, fertilizer, irrigation, and other full environmental parameters control system. It costs Rs.2500 to Rs.4000/square meter.
Polyhouse farming undoubtedly generates more returns with farmer receiving 8 times more than normal farming. These returns have high profit margins. It only requires some initial high investment which can easily be recovered. It is an excellent method that has increased the annual income of farmers and generates higher yields.