Zip Tie Domes

ClissAT

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https://www.ziptiedomes.com/

I like that they provide multiple calculations for various dome sizes.

This next link is to a youtube video made by the above company but you will find many other videos on this page also. I found that by watching many videos I got an idea of the 'secrets' these companies use so you think you have to buy everything from them! ;)
Of course you would have to be a very expert crafts person because this type of structure does demand precision.


Someone suggested building this dome from the top down which might also be doable particularly if you had already built some before.

I think this structure might make a good temporary accommodation or tiny house.

I made a few ball park cost calculations & realised it is not a cheap method of construction but it is light weight & easy to construct. But not easy to make the components yourself unless you are very precise with your workmanship. A very small error in strut length or hub hole position would throw the whole dome out of whack.

Here's another 2 videos where the bloke talks about the pros & cons & shows one construction method as well as the calculator.

 
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ClissAT

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So I realized I didn't update to say I purchased a 5m wide kit Zip Tie dome complete for $400. I can also get what is known as a Silo wall which raises the dome another 1-2m depending on your requirements. The silo wall is vertical rather than sloping like the dome sides. I will be getting a 2m silo wall extension for the domes I put over the mango trees & probably also for the ones I use as temporary accommodation for back packers who will be volunteering here later this year.

Luckily the lady who makes the kits for sale is part of the permaculture group I go to & she lives not too far away so I didn't even have to pay postage.

I haven't erected it yet due to wanting to prune a tree first then build the dome around the tree.

Amanda (who makes the kits) recommends planting lucerne under the tree & around the edges of the dome for several reasons.
1- fresh lucerne is fantastic fertilizer for fruit trees & excellent conditioner for the soil.
2- it will be easy to simply mow around the outer edge of the dome without need to whipper snip all that distance of edge. The mown lucerne will just compost into the soil for more fertilizer. The ground inside the dome is just left to grow how it wants. The lucerne wont get too tall due to the shade under the tree.
3- the lucerne flowers are great to eat in salads so it is serving multiple uses.
4- Bunches of leafy stems can be harvested for the chooks OR the chooks can be housed inside the dome if it is netted in! They will have permanent shade & protection along with good forage.
5- The flowers are excellent bee food & bring in extra bees to help with pollination.

Anything that reduces the amount of mowing I have to do is good for me!
 
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Kasalia

http://retired2006.blogspot.com.au/
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I like the idea of planting lucerne, keeping that in mind for the community garden.

How do you cope when tree starts growing again, when I net mine they always they grow through. I helped my sister build one of these from a permaculture book DIY for her movable chicken house. Worked well.
 

ClissAT

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How do you cope when tree starts growing again, when I net mine they always they grow through.

Yes well there's the catch! They just keep growing & grow even faster.
That's what I mentioned about in my post in the mango thread.
Once you prune them, you have to keep pruning them to keep them down to your height. So whatever structure you put over them has to allow enough headroom for 2yrs grow because you only want to prune them right down hard every second year or you'll never have a crop.

I gave up on my lychee tree for that very reason. And the fact that the king parrots got to the baby fruit way before they were even close to mature size let alone turning red.
But the tree would grow like crazy after pruning & push through the net even though I thought I made the hoop frame high enough.
By fruiting time there wouldn't even be enough space to move between the tree & the net so birds & bats got at the fruit through the net in anycase.
Since I haven't been pruning it, it has stopped growing so fast but its size is far bigger than I can handle for netting. So I never get any lychees. I haven't even fertilized or watered it for a couple years now. Its just wildlife habitat!
 
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