Wind damage!

Discussion in 'Grape Growing & Vineyard Forum' started by RonObvious, Oct 18, 2019.

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  1. Oct 18, 2019 #1

    RonObvious

    RonObvious

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    So during Wednesday night's bomb cyclone here in the Northeast, this happened:


    20191018_110037673_iOS.jpg

    Thankfully it was only 1 row and the vines bent without breaking. But it makes me wonder, what's the best way to prevent this from happening again in the future? Clearly those green metal stakes that I'm using for line posts aren't going to cut it. Heavier duty metal stakes? Circular metal poles, like they use for installing chain link fence? Wooden poles like I used for the end posts? (I really don't want to use wood because I know they're going to rot and have to be replaced some day). I'm even wondering if I should do something crazy like install earth anchors, similar to what I've got at the ends of the rows, in the middle of the rows to prevent lateral movement. What do you folks think? Any insight is appreciated!
     
  2. Oct 18, 2019 #2

    salcoco

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  3. Oct 18, 2019 #3

    bshef

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    Bamboo stakes rot faster than wood posts and won't withstand wind. I would go with wood posts (my preference) or heavier duty metal T posts. How far apart do you have the line posts? You may need the posts closer.
     
  4. Oct 18, 2019 #4

    RonObvious

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    Bshef, the line posts are 20' apart. I'm sure you're right, that adding more line posts would help, but I'm also wondering about specifically what kind of posts to use. These were standard green metal posts which I bought from Lowes. They were oriented with along the same plane as the wind, but it didn't seem to matter, as they twisted and then bent right over. Wondering if there's a sturdier type of stake that won't bend so easily. I take it you use wood posts? How long do you keep them in the ground before replacing?
     
  5. Oct 18, 2019 #5

    bshef

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    T posts are metal and sturdier; from the picture I don't think you have the heaviest duty posts. Check with a fencing company if you have one close by. Treated posts should last 15 to 20 years - probably as long as your vines. Replacing posts in the winter when the vines are dormant shouldn't be a major effort. Anyway, a whole row won't rot off all at the same time. If you can find some locust posts (local sawmill) they will last 50 years or longer. Was this wind storm a once in a lifetime or do you get this much wind on a regular basis? If a common occurrence, you may want to think about anchors at a few points along the row. If once in a lifetime, I'd say get sturdier metal (not galvanized for chain link) and roll with the punches.
     
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  6. Oct 18, 2019 #6

    RonObvious

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    Storms like that don't happen on a regular basis, but every few years they might. Guess I'll have to look around and see what's available locally. I've heard about locust posts before, but can't seem to find them locally. I'm pretty much limited to what I can find at Lowes, HD, or Tractor Supply. Thanks for the advice.
     
  7. Oct 18, 2019 #7

    salcoco

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    sometime the local power company is replacing poles and you can then use them cut to length as end posts. although organically with creosote the years leach it out and an older pole does not have any.
     
  8. Oct 18, 2019 #8

    Sage

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    Check with a well driller/pump installer. I got slightly rusty 1&1/2 and 2 in pipe, FREE. It's not going to bend.
     
  9. Oct 19, 2019 #9

    Dennis Griffith

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    Sorry about the damage. It can be discouraging to see such a thing after so much work. I suggest checking with a local farm supply retailer. You can use plastic fence post(s) made from recycled plastic if you want to avoid wood. They are the same size (4-5") as a standard fence post, but last much longer and are as strong, but can be hard to find. I use pressure treated 4x4 posts on the ends (with Sakrete/Quikrete in the bottoms of hole) with 8' heavy duty T post every 2 - 3 vines. Make sure you get a better grade of treated lumber as it will last longer. Not all PT lumber is the same and it should have a rating tag stapled to it. You want lumber rated for ground contact/burial with a long life rating. Also, I put dry Sakrete/Quikrete in the bottom of the hole for 2 reasons, one it helps protect the end from rot and second it gives the post a footing to set against (I set my posts at an angle). As for swapping out posts, I do it in late winter/early spring before bud break and after pruning. I have tractors and one with a front loader, so I just pull the old one out and push the new one into the same hole. When you buy the T posts, make sure they give you the heavy wire clips that go with them.
     
  10. Oct 23, 2019 #10

    Lando545

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    I would also add that when building your end Posts be sure and add a kicker or Build an H Brace style end post. This is to ensure that your end posts don't start to come out of the ground when tension is applied to your wire. Tractor supply usually sells 6' and 8' T-posts in bundles of five. The wire clips are usually sold separately but they are cheap. If you go with the rusty drilling pipe you can just spray some rust neutralizer on it and then give it a nice coat of paint if you want. Also in Texas at least, the drilling pipe is usually sold in 33' sections, so have a band saw(Keep your blade oiled while cutting) or a torch to cut the pipe. I usually set my pipes 2 1/2' to 3' in the ground. So if you cut an 8' section and set it 3' you'll have 5' above the ground. Sometimes re-sellers of the drilling pipe will cut it for you, but they may want a little extra in return. Alot of people also cap their pipes by welding a rounded cap onto the top. Your pipes will last a lot longer in wet conditions this way.
     
  11. Oct 23, 2019 #11

    Intheswamp

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    Er, aren't those "U" posts rather than "T" posts? The U-posts that I've seen are a lot lighter-duty than t-posts. ???
     

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