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SHUR FARMS FROST PROTECTION

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Address

1890 N. 8th St
Colton
CA, 92324
United States
Phone
(909) 825-2035
Fax
(909) 825-2611
Primary
Katie Braun


Shur Farms Frost Protection® has over 20 years of experience in frost protection science and cold air removal technology. Having been growers ourselves, we understand the challenges of designing an effective and affordable frost protect system. We designed and installed the first North American cold air drainage system in the late 1990s and began manufacturing and marketing the Cold Air Drain® in 2001.  Since then, we have installed thousands of units protecting trees and vines, making us the leader in cold air removal. Ongoing advancements to the powerful Cold Air Drain® have made it the most fuel efficient, quiet, and cost-effective method of active frost protection available.

Shur Farms Frost Protection Specialties


Cold Air Removal:  Designing customized and environmentally friendly systems that integrate single or multiple frost protection methods and address the needs of today's growers.

Orchard & Vineyard Optimization: Recommending passive frost protection measures (e.g., barriers, cover crop management) to optimize growing areas. 

Ongoing Design Support:  Offering ongoing frost protection system support and design modification to accommodate changing situations.

Research: Monitoring frost protection trends and issues to provide accurate information to growers and assist with local sustainability issues.

Education:  Address growers' questions and provide frost information via presentations, seminars, articles, and more.

Our team has extensive experience in frost protection science.  Our team members bring diverse experience and substantial education in the fields of agriculture, business, environmental policy, and research methods. Team members hold degrees from prestigious research universities, including University of California at Davis, University of California at Riverside, University of California at Los Angeles, University of Southern California, and Cal Poly, Pomona.

We use clean manufacturing practices, including recycling, paper reduction, and limiting packaging materials. Our environmentally friendly products use small, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-certified, fuel-efficient engines and fuel tanks, low wind resistance propellers, and green units to blend into the natural environment. We are fully committed to providing outstanding frost protection products and customer service to serve your needs.


The main Shur Farms® departments serving you are:

Parts & Service
Production
Research & Development
Sales
Customer Service

WIN Expo
WIN Expo
Shur Farms Frost Protection
Shur Farms Frost Protection
This video explains how radiation frost occurs and the effect that the Shur Farms Cold Air Drain® has on frost-prone areas

News Archive


The Problem with Noisy Frost Protection
07 April, 2017

Noise generated by the operation of agricultural frost protection equipment is a contentious issue in many communities. This is especially true with frost protection equipment (e.g., traditional wind machines) that is generally operated during the night when temperatures are lowest. During calm, quiet nights, the operation of such frost protection equipment may be extremely disruptive to nearby residential areas. Many regions, counties, districts, and cities have already implemented (or are in the process of developing) noise ordinances or best practices to limit noise from activities, such as operating traditional wind machines (e.g., Napa County, California; New Zealand). 

In this report, we measure the decibel levels for the Cold Air Drain® #1550 model with several available power options was conducted at the Shur Farms Frost Protection®manufacturing facility in Colton, California. Findings showed that as the distance from the Cold Air Drain® unit increased, the decibel level decreased. The decibel level for each power unit tested was highest at 5ft from the engine for both the engine side and the side opposite the engine. The decibel levels at 5ft from each power unit on the engine side were comparable to the level of city traffic from inside a car. The decibel levels at 5ft from each power unit on the side opposite of the engine were comparable to the levels of a telephone dial tone. At a distance of 100ft the decibel levels for both the engine side and opposite the engine approximated the level of normal conversation. The findings from this exploratory study suggested that the Cold Air Drain® #1550 with each power unit may be significantly quieter than traditional wind machines. 

 Read Full Report HERE


WIN Expo 2016
30 November, 2016

Come see the Shur Farms team at the WIN Expo 2016 on December 1st at Booth #728.  We look forward to answering all your frost protection questions.


Radiation Frost and The Shur Farms Cold Air Drain®
26 October, 2016


Physics of Frost
07 September, 2016

Growers know what frost is, but few may understand the physics behind how it develops. Such an understanding is useful when figuring out how to protect your vines from frost damage. 

 At Shur Farms, we specialize in agricultural frost prevention and work with growers throughout North America. We designed and installed the first North American cold air drainage system in the late 1990s and began manufacturing and marketing the Cold Air Drain in 2001. Our frost protection technology is most effective in undulating topography, but the basic principles around which we base our technology are relevant to protecting against frost damage in most areas. 

 First, it is important to understand two thermal processes: radiation and conduction. 

Radiation is how energy travels through space. Energy lost from the ground due to radiation will not warm the air, but will instead be lost to space. Different materials radiate heat at different rates and the faster a material radiates heat, the more quickly it cools. 

 For example, the ground will radiate heat faster than the air. Conduction is the process whereby heat transfers from molecule to molecule. An ice cube on one end of a steel rod will cause the rod to conduct heat all the way from the other end of that rod, eventually cooling the entire rod. 

Another important concept is unobstructed radiation loss. This is when there is no break up of radiation loses such as clouds moving in overhead or a wind. For example, say a valley basin fills with lethal cold air in four hours under unobstructed radiation loss conditions. This situation could lead to frost damage because when the basin is filled the plant tissues are submerged in a lethal cold air mass. However, if wind or clouds come every 2 hours and obstruct the filling process, the basin will never fill and there will be no frost threat. 

 Typical nighttime conditions for radiation frost are clear skies and no wind. On such a night the ground will start out being warmer than the air because during the day the ground is absorbing and storing heat that is coming from the sun. 

When the sun goes down the ground will start losing heat through radiation. Different soil types with different water densities will lose heat at different rates, e.g. loose sandy soil will cool more quickly than heavy dense clay soils and dry soil will cool faster than wet soil. 

 The soil will eventually become colder than the surrounding air temperature. There is a risk of radiation frost occurring only when the soil temperature dips lower than the air temperature. As long as the soil temperature remains warmer than the air, then there can be no cooling of the air around the plants and thus there is no possibility of radiation frost. 

When the soil becomes colder than the air layer in contact with the ground, the ground will start chilling the air from the ground up through conduction. This is when the inversion layer starts to develop as now the lower layers of the atmosphere are colder than the higher ones. 

The most dangerous nights for frost is when the ground has very little heat stored in it due to cold winds or cloud cover inhibiting the absorption of energy and heat into the soil during the preceding days. If the skies become clear during the night and the ground is at or near the air temperature, then the ground will quickly become colder than the air and the inversion layer will start to develop. 

Under these conditions, the risk of frost is greatly increased. The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses the deeper that cold air can accumulate causing increased temperature differentials within the growing, and the greater the risk of frost damage.

The air becomes stratified when the cooler air layer, which is heavier and denser, develops below the warmer layers above. The denser and heavier strati are affected by gravity and will flow downhill if there is a slope. 

This downhill flow, called katabatic flow, is along the ground and the depth of the flow will vary from a few inches to several feet depending on the amount of cold air being generated upstream and the angle of slope.  

The area upslope of the basin that is feeding cold air (airshed) into it determines the amount or mass of cold air, while the angle of slope determines the speed of the air moving downhill. The steeper the slope, the faster the downhill speed. If cold air does not submerge plant tissue, then there is no risk of frost damage. This is why steep hillsides and other well drained areas do not experience radiation frost damage, even though the ground temperature may be the same as the ground temps in the accumulation area. 

Under inversion conditions, the air is a stratified fluid, subject to the laws of fluid dynamics and behaving like all fluids do. Unlike some fluids that become more viscous (thicker and slower flow like motor oil and molasses) as they become colder, air becomes less viscous as it becomes colder and so can flow even more easily. 

Any area where more cold air flows into than can flow out is considered to have insufficient drainage. Such areas will start to accumulate cold air. When this cold air mass builds to a height that submerges plant tissue, there is risk of frost damage. These areas are called frost pockets. 

As long as there is sufficient drainage to allow this colder air to remove itself, or the plant tissue is at a height above the critical cold air layers, there will be no frost damage. As this colder air flows downhill and accumulates in the lower valleys and frost pockets where there is insufficient drainage, or as the flow deepens, it may submerge the plant tissue in a lethal cold air mass. 

Because the ground loses heat at a consistent rate during unobstructed radiation loss conditions, and the hours available for radiation loses are fairly consistent during the growing season, the amount of cold air generated and the damage patterns during a frost night are also fairly consistent. 

moisture), and it doesn’t matter if this is a January night or a July night. The difference is that in July there is much more heat stored in the ground and a much shorter night. There may not be enough time for ground to lose enough heat to cool below the air temperature, thus there would be no cooling of the air along the ground, no stratification, no katabatic flow, no accumulation of cold air, and no inversion developing. 

The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses, the deeper the cold air mass can become in the accumulation areas and the greater the temperature differential will be between the well-drained areas and the accumulation areas. For instance, if the regional temperature is 33F, then hillsides and other well drained-areas will be at or very near this temperature. 

Because the mass of cold air is determined by the heat loss from the air shed areas feeding into the accumulation basin, and the speed of flow is determined by the angle of slope, there is a specific amount of time required for cold air to accumulate and differentiate substantially from the regional temperature. 

For instance, it may take 2 hours for enough cold air to flow into a specific frost pocket to build up deep enough to submerge plants in lethal cold air. Every hour may lower the temperature in the frost pocket by 1F, so after 2 hours the temperature on the hillside is 33F and in the pocket it will be 31F. If a wind or clouds come up every hour, the accumulated cold air and temperature differential will be removed and there will be no threat of frost damage. However, if there is no wind or clouds for 5 hours, then the temperature on the hillside will still be 33F (regional low temperature), but the temperature in the frost pocket will now be 28F. Remember that understanding the physics behind frost is the first step to protecting your crops from frost damage 

Growers know what frost is, but few may understand the physics behind how it develops. Such an understanding is useful 
when figuring out how to protect your vines from frost damage. 

 At Shur Farms, we specialize in agricultural frost prevention and work with growers throughout North America. We designed and installed the first North American cold air drainage system in the late 1990s and began manufacturing and marketing the Cold Air Drain in 2001. Our frost protection technology is most effective in undulating topography, but the basic principles around which we base our technology are relevant to protecting against frost damage in most areas. 

 First, it is important to understand two thermal processes: radiation and conduction. 

Radiation is how energy travels through space. Energy lost from the ground due to radiation will not warm the air, but will instead be lost to space. Different materials radiate heat at different rates and the faster a material radiates heat, the more quickly it cools. 

 For example, the ground will radiate heat faster than the air. Conduction is the process whereby heat transfers from molecule to molecule. An ice cube on one end of a steel rod will cause the rod to conduct heat all the way from the other end of that rod, eventually cooling the entire rod. 

Another important concept is unobstructed radiation loss. This is when there is no break up of radiation loses such as clouds moving in overhead or a wind. For example, say a valley basin fills with lethal cold air in four hours under unobstructed radiation loss conditions. This situation could lead to frost damage because when the basin is filled the plant tissues are submerged in a lethal cold air mass. However, if wind or clouds come every 2 hours and obstruct the filling process, the basin will never fill and there will be no frost threat. 

 Typical nighttime conditions for radiation frost are clear skies and no wind. On such a night the ground will start out being warmer than the air because during the day the ground is absorbing and storing heat that is coming from the sun. 

When the sun goes down the ground will start losing heat through radiation. Different soil types with different water densities will lose heat at different rates, e.g. loose sandy soil will cool more quickly than heavy dense clay soils and dry soil will cool faster than wet soil. 

 The soil will eventually become colder than the surrounding air temperature. There is a risk of radiation frost occurring only when the soil temperature dips lower than the air temperature. As long as the soil temperature remains warmer than the air, then there can be no cooling of the air around the plants and thus there is no possibility of radiation frost. 

When the soil becomes colder than the air layer in contact with the ground, the ground will start chilling the air from the ground up through conduction. This is when the inversion layer starts to develop as now the lower layers of the atmosphere are colder than the higher ones. 

The most dangerous nights for frost is when the ground has very little heat stored in it due to cold winds or cloud cover inhibiting the absorption of energy and heat into the soil during the preceding days. If the skies become clear during the night and the ground is at or near the air temperature, then the ground will quickly become colder than the air and the inversion layer will start to develop. 

Under these conditions, the risk of frost is greatly increased. The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses the deeper that cold air can accumulate causing increased temperature differentials within the growing, and the greater the risk of frost damage.

The air becomes stratified when the cooler air layer, which is heavier and denser, develops below the warmer layers above. The denser and heavier strati are affected by gravity and will flow downhill if there is a slope. 

This downhill flow, called katabatic flow, is along the ground and the depth of the flow will vary from a few inches to several feet depending on the amount of cold air being generated upstream and the angle of slope.  

The area upslope of the basin that is feeding cold air (airshed) into it determines the amount or mass of cold air, while the angle of slope determines the speed of the air moving downhill. The steeper the slope, the faster the downhill speed. If cold air does not submerge plant tissue, then there is no risk of frost damage. This is why steep hillsides and other well drained areas do not experience radiation frost damage, even though the ground temperature may be the same as the ground temps in the accumulation area. 

Under inversion conditions, the air is a stratified fluid, subject to the laws of fluid dynamics and behaving like all fluids do. Unlike some fluids that become more viscous (thicker and slower flow like motor oil and molasses) as they become colder, air becomes less viscous as it becomes colder and so can flow even more easily. 

Any area where more cold air flows into than can flow out is considered to have insufficient drainage. Such areas will start to accumulate cold air. When this cold air mass builds to a height that submerges plant tissue, there is risk of frost damage. These areas are called frost pockets. 

As long as there is sufficient drainage to allow this colder air to remove itself, or the plant tissue is at a height above the critical cold air layers, there will be no frost damage. As this colder air flows downhill and accumulates in the lower valleys and frost pockets where there is insufficient drainage, or as the flow deepens, it may submerge the plant tissue in a lethal cold air mass. 

Because the ground loses heat at a consistent rate during unobstructed radiation loss conditions, and the hours available for radiation loses are fairly consistent during the growing season, the amount of cold air generated and the damage patterns during a frost night are also fairly consistent. 

moisture), and it doesn’t matter if this is a January night or a July night. The difference is that in July there is much more heat stored in the ground and a much shorter night. There may not be enough time for ground to lose enough heat to cool below the air temperature, thus there would be no cooling of the air along the ground, no stratification, no katabatic flow, no accumulation of cold air, and no inversion developing. 

The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses, the deeper the cold air mass can become in the accumulation areas and the greater the temperature differential will be between the well-drained areas and the accumulation areas. For instance, if the regional temperature is 33F, then hillsides and other well drained-areas will be at or very near this temperature. 

Because the mass of cold air is determined by the heat loss from the air shed areas feeding into the accumulation basin, and the speed of flow is determined by the angle of slope, there is a specific amount of time required for cold air to accumulate and differentiate substantially from the regional temperature. 

For instance, it may take 2 hours for enough cold air to flow into a specific frost pocket to build up deep enough to submerge plants in lethal cold air. Every hour may lower the temperature in the frost pocket by 1F, so after 2 hours the temperature on the hillside is 33F and in the pocket it will be 31F. If a wind or clouds come up every hour, the accumulated cold air and temperature differential will be removed and there will be no threat of frost damage. However, if there is no wind or clouds for 5 hours, then the temperature on the hillside will still be 33F (regional low temperature), but the temperature in the frost pocket will now be 28F. Remember that understanding the physics behind frost is the first step to protecting your crops from frost damage 


Do I really need Over the Vine Water for Frost Protection?
04 April, 2016

 If you are in an area that has limited (or maybe zero) water available for frost protection, is there anything that you can do to mitigate the frost risk to your vineyard?  In some areas, such as Mendocino county or Pope Valley for example, the conventional wisdom is that water is the only effective method to protect against frost. But is that true?

 

Well, the answer is...maybe.  To clarify, first we must understand the frost risks and how different methods protect and then choose the correct tools to deal with the problem. 

 

The blunt fact is that areas such as Pope Valley or Mendocino County in California simply are not suited to growing wine grapes.  It gets too cold, too early.  Plants are genetically predetermined to come out of dormancy at a particular time and if that time is prior to when the region would normally experience its last winter storm of the season (called advection freeze), then that crop or variety is not suited to growing there.  The judicious advice is to plant crops and varieties that come out of dormancy after the time the region normally experiences its last winter storm event.  When economics make it viable to overcome the occasional deep freeze such as it is in these areas then extraordinary measures might be appropriate and financially beneficial, and after all isn't that what it's all about?

 

Since advection freeze conditions are caused by a cold mass of air moving (usually from the north arctic regions) over the ground and there is no temperature inversion, only two of the four frost protection categories can help to stave off frost damage.  Those 4 categories are;  1. Warming the air,  2. Preventing heat loss from the ground, 3. Covering the crop with a warm 'blanket' to shield from the cold, and 4. Modifying the natural growth patterns of the crop.  Only 3 and 4 can offer potential help under advection conditions. 

 

Pruning later is effective because it delays bud break and modifies the natural growth patterns.   Over vine water is effective because it puts a coat on the vines to shield from the cold.  All other methods of frost protection require an inversion to be effective. 

 

During advection conditions the cold air that causes damage is not due to ground cooling (which in turn cools the air from the ground up causing an inversion layer ), but rather the cold air mass that causes frost damage comes in above the ground at varying heights and from varying directions. True advection freezes are cold winter storms complete with wind, clouds, snow, hail, sleet, and Santa Claus.  Under these conditions, even water might not be effective and can actually make the situation worse under extreme conditions.  Luckily, true advection freezes rarely happen during the growing season.  If they did, no one would grow that crop there. 

 

So then, what are we really dealing with??? 

 

What we are dealing with is called a 'regional temperature deficit'.   These events are radiation frost but the warmest air in the region is below the safe temperature for growing the crops. There are clear skies, no wind and an inversion layer.  This means that the accumulation areas (frost pockets) will be colder than the areas that have good cold air drainage, but even the warmer areas are too cold and must be protected. 

 

 

These regional temperature deficits occur more frequently than full on advection freezes in these areas, but do not happen every year.  A good estimate is that Pope Valley and Mendocino County will experience this about once every three or four years.  Under these conditions, over vine sprinkling is a necessity, but be aware that the temperature differences between the non-accumulation areas such as hillsides and the frost pockets remains the same as in any radiation frost event.  This means that if a cold pocket is 6 deg. F colder than the regional temperature and the regional temperature is 29F, then the cold pocket will be 23F.  This is beyond the range of micro sprinklers.  To protect, even the higher areas that normally do not get damaged will need to be sprinkled. To protect the frost pockets under these conditions a secondary frost protection method that is compatible with water must be employed simultaneously.

 

 

The goal then should not be to eliminate water for frost protection, but to minimize water usage and to protect the entire vineyard under the most severe conditions.  Under normal conditions, only the cold air accumulation areas get cold enough to get frost damage and these areas can be controlled with other non-water methods.  Because of the risk of a regional deficit, these other methods must be compatible with the over vine sprinklers.  If your water grid is controlled by a sensor located in the coldest spot, then you will be using water over the entire vineyard when only a small portion may need frost protection.  Under the most severe frost conditions then only the warmest areas will be protected and the colder areas may suffer even greater damage with water than if nothing was done at all.  This is the downside of over vine sprinklers, they go from complete protection to catastrophic failure with not much middle ground.  On their own, they are not at all a perfect solution under these conditions. 

 

Conventional wind machines are not compatible with over vine sprinklers.  Wind machines blowing over water will cause evaporation and evaporation results in cooling, (think 'evaporative coolers').  The air temperature will drop causing more damage than what would have occurred without any frost protection at all.  Since sprinklers must be turned on when the air temperature is several degrees above the critical point to compensate for evaporative cooling that will occur, these types of wind machines could only be employed under very mild conditions.  If water is turned on first wind machines cannot be employed at all until the vines are completely dry.  Wind machines are simply not suitable for areas that could experience regional deficits.   

 

Cold Air Drains® are compatible with over vine sprinkling and work synergistically with them, enhancing the value of both.  CAD machines remove the cold air in the coldest areas eliminating the need for sprinklers until such time as a regional deficit occurs.  The effect of cold air drainage is to reduce or eliminate the temperature differentials between the colder 'frost pockets' and the areas that are sufficiently drained and normally would not experience frost damage. 
Since both methods may be used simultaneously, even under the most severe conditions all areas of the vineyard would be protected. 

 

 

 

By Steve Hammersmith


Shur Farms Announces New Distributor
25 January, 2016

 

 

Shur Farms Announces New Distributor

 

 

Shur Farms Frost Protection® announces the appointment of a new distributor serving Canada and Northeastern United States.  Effective immediately Provide Agro Corporation (N.M. Bartlett, Inc.), based in Ontario, Canada, and with over 100 years of experience in agriculture and ag equipment distribution.  The professionals at Provide Agro Corporation will be working closely with Shur Farms Frost Protection® to provide growers with state of the art frost protection solutions.  

 

Shur Farms Frost Protection, the world leader in Cold Air Drain technology and micro-climate manipulation for 2 decades is proud to announce and welcome Provide Agro Corporation to its growing worldwide distribution network.   Growers may contact Provide Agro Corporation at:

 

Provide Agro Corporation

4825 Union Road, Beamsville, Ontario

Canada, LOR 1B4

Phone: 905-563-8261    Toll Free 1-800-263-1287   Email:  Info@provideag.ca

 

For more Information and international distributors, please contact Shur Farms for your local representative or dealer at:

 

Shur Farms Frost Protection

1890n 8th St

Colton, CA 92324

Phone (909) 825-2035  Fax (909) 825- 2611

info@shurfarms.com

www.shurfarms.com

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Shur Farms Scholarship Winners Announced!
02 October, 2015

Shur Farms Frost Protection 2015 Scholarships Awarded

            Shur Farms is proud to participate in helping students achieve a higher education. Shur Farms Frost Protection awards a scholarship to two hardworking, deserving students to assist in furthering their education. This year we want to congratulate Skye Bruce and Nicholas Fantozzi.

            Skye Bruce is a student at California Polytechnic University of San Luis Obispo majoring in Wine and Viticulture. She grew up on an avocado ranch. In high school she was the president of the Agriculture, Animal Science and Natural Resources majors clubs. She is a hardworking student earning a GPA of over 3.0.

            Nicholas Fantozzi is a civil engineer major from California Polytechnic University of San Luis Obispo. He grew up on his family’s vineyards always fascinated with the complex machinery of the vineyard. Nicholas comes from a generation of engineers and dreams of carrying on the tradition. He is a high achieving student earning a GPA of higher than 3.0.

 

Shur Farms Frost Protection Scholarships and Grant 2016

            Shur Farms 2016 scholarship applications are now being accepted. Deadline is August 1, 2016, requirements are; 3.0 or higher GPA, Agriculture related major preferred, and a deposition of why we should select you.

Contact Amber Andrade for an application at: amber@shurfarms.com or call us at (909) 825-2035.


Protect those Frost Pockets with Shur Farms End of Year Sale!
04 September, 2015

Protect those Frost Pockets with Shur Farms End of Year Sale on all Cold Air Drains. Call today to start your analysis! Already have an analysis with us, no problem! Contact us and we will give you a new quote! Machines in stock and ready to ship same day!

tFrost Pcoket

 


Don't miss the Scholarship Deadline!
29 June, 2015

Shur Farms Frost Protection is proud to support education and is now offering scholarships! Applicates will be selected last week of July. For more information on how to apply and to get an application please contact Amber before July 24th at amber@shurfarms.com

 

2015 Grant & Scholarships

 

Shur Farms is providing a grant and scholarships to individuals. 1 grant at $500.00 and 2 scholarships at $250.00 each. Please reply asking for the application at amber@shurfarms.com

 

2015 Grant Winner:

 

Engineers without Borders, Lindsey Weinholtz – Southern Illinois University Carbondale

 

Their goals are to provide the community of Las Mojarras, Guatemala with running water, improved sanitation, and a higher quality of living. The community consists roughly of 550 people, with about 25 families in the community having access to running water. The storage of water causes sanitation issues, leaving latrines a scarcity in densely occupied areas. Currently they are working on a water distribution project to provide water to the remaining areas of the community. They have a 5 year commitment to the community and this will allow their students to apply what they have learned in class to the engineering field.

 

2015 Scholarship Winners:

 

Please apply and ask for an application at amber@shurfarms.com

 


Shur Farms’ Summer Sale Now in Progress!
15 June, 2015

Don't let frost nip at your nose in your vineyard next season. Shur Farms Frost Protection 10% Discount on all Cold Air Drains.  Call today to get your quote and free, no obligation frost analysis.

10% Sale


Shur Farms Encourages Scholarship Applicants. Apply Now!
18 May, 2015

Shur Farms Frost Protection is proud to support education and is now offering scholarships! For more information on how to apply. please contact Amber at amber@shurfarms.com


Couple weeks left on Free Shipping!
10 April, 2015

Couple weeks left! Get your orders in my May 1, 2015 and you will get $1,000.00 off per machine of free shipping! Put your order in today! Call us!


Two Shur Farms Scholarships available! Congratulations to Shur Farms Grant Winner!
03 April, 2015

Shur Farms is providing a grant and scholarships to individuals. 2 scholarships at $250.00 each. No criteria, please reply asking for the application at amber@shurfarms.com . Winners will be selected by end of July for scholarships. 

 

Congratulations 2015 Shur Farms Grant Winner!

Engineers without Borders, Lindsey Weinholtz – Southern Illinois University Carbondale

Their goals are to provide the community of Las Mojarras, Guatemala with running water, improved sanitation, and a higher quality of living. The community consists roughly of 550 people, with about 25 families in the community having access to running water. The storage of water causes sanitation issues, leaving latrines a scarcity in densely occupied areas. Currently they are working on a water distribution project to provide water to the remaining areas of the community. They have a 5 year commitment to the community and this will allow their students to apply what they have learned in class to the engineering field. 

2015 Scholarship Winners:

Please apply and ask for an application at amber@shurfarms.com

 


Free Shipping For Eastern Coast Wineries!
09 March, 2015

Shur Farms would like to introduce our shipping sale to all east coast wineries up to May 1, 2015 (up to $1,000.00 per machine). 


You can find the Shur Farms team at WIVI or Eastern Winery Expo next week to ask questions or contact their office at (909) 825-2035 or amber@shurfarms.com


Do you know the extent of your frost damage?
06 February, 2015

Do you not know the extent of your frost protection? Let Shur Farms help! Shur Farms Frost Protection provides many growers the opportunity to learn more about their vineyards through frost analysis's. The frost analysis team will work with you to target your frost areas through Cold Air Drain technology!

 

 

 

Learn more! The first book for growers about frost protection, "Cold Air Accumulation and the Grower's Guide to Frost 

 Protection" - Author Steve Hammersmith. This book goes into detail on how frost develops, types of accumulation, types of methods and more to protect your crop. 

 

 

 

 

Did you miss us at our shows! We have more coming up and come see our Shur Farms Frost Teams at of these locations:

World Ag Expo Tulare, CA Feb 10-12, 2015

WAWGG Kennewick, WA Feb 11-12, 2015

Texas Wine & Grape Annual Conference and Tradeshow San Marcos, TX Feb 19-21, 2015

Oregon Wine Symposium Portland, OR Feb. 24-25, 2015

WIVI Central Coast Paso Robles, CA Mar. 17-18, 2015

Eastern Winery Syracuse, NY Mar. 18-19, 2015


Our annual pre-sale is now in progress
02 October, 2014

Get a 5% discount on all of our Cold Air Drain® models now thru Nov. 30, 2014! Must be ordered by Nov. 30, 2014 and shipped prior to Jan. 1, 2015.

Call now for your free site analysis. For projects already analyzed and quoted, give us a call and we can add the sale discount to your project purchase.

 

New Propane Powered Engines and Auto-Starts for Models #1550 and #3510 Cold Air Drains.

Two new models – that you'll only find HERE.

Subaru 25 HP and Vanguard 35 HP rounds out our extensive line of electric and fossil fuel powered auto start engines.

 

The most efficient in the business!

 

 

Winner of WIN Innovation Award:

Shur Farms Hot Spotter

Shur Farms Frost Protection® is excited to announce the launch of the Hot Spotter, winner of the 2013 WIN innovation award and a new concept in managing cold air accumulation that eliminates the need for expensive full size frost protection in small areas. Just locate your hot spot, place the Hot Spotter in a convenient location, plug it in, and turn it on!


Shur Farms' Pre Season Sale Now In Progress!
28 September, 2014

Shur Farms Pre season sale is now in progress. Get a 5% discount on all Cold Air Drain models now thru Nov. 30, 2014. Must be ordered by Nov. 30, 2014 and shipped priorto Jan. 1, 2015. 

For more information please visit www.shurfarms.com


Shur Farms’ Summer Sale Ending This Week!
25 August, 2014

This is our last week for our Summer Sale! Get a 10% discount on all of our Cold Air Drain ® models now thru Aug. 31, 2014!

For information on other promotions and to read our Summer Newsletter  - CLICK HERE


Early frost in the vineyard before harvest?
09 June, 2014

It feels awfully warm right now, so talk of frost protection can seem a little early. But with Harvest approaching and the busy season upon us, an early frost in the late fall/early winter can sneak up on you.

When the vines are about to bud and frost becomes the number one enemy, (usually the six weeks from the middle of March to the end of April are the most critical) and with the weather as unpredicable as ever - the question becomes: How soon are you researching your vineyard frost prevention?

An early fall frost is a complicated issue that goes beyond just damage to the grapes that have yet to be picked, extending to the foliage and the vines themselves. When you lose the foliage, you lose the mechanism that gets the grapes ripe. But you need a frost in the fall to clean up the wood. You need the foliage to fall off so you can trim back the vines. But with a frost the second week in October, it’s not good for the vines because they go dormant too early.

protecting the vineyards from frost at this point in the harvest is also difficult. Usually, in the spring, you use water – a lot of water, but now you’ve got grapes on the vine, so you can’t use water. The grapes will rot if they get too wet too often. And if you use a lot of water, the ground soaks it up and dilutes the grapes. And who can keep a reservoir full during the heat of the summer?  It’s a complicated issue...

 

 

Enter Shur Farms...

The machine, left, is a large 9 foot diameter horizontal fan connected to a gasoline powered engine. The fan pushes the air upward approximately 300 feet.

The machines can be placed in the lowest parts of the vineyard where the cold air collects. By circulating the air it allows the warmer layers above to replace those below. These machines are strategically placed, and when the temperature drops to, say 37 degrees, they are all turned on and allowed to run until morning. PROBLEM SOLVED!

 


Spring Frost Protection in the Vineyard
13 May, 2014

As all vineyard managers know, Mother Nature shows no mercy when it comes to weather. And when she's at her worst, she can drop temperatures low enough to destroy an entire vineyard. This article will focus on one type of cold hazard: the risk of spring frost, when new buds and shoots are most vulnerable. A late, unexpected frost that occurs during or after bud break can be devastating for vineyards, and is a significant production hazard in nearly all locations in the temperate zone.

According to Mike White, Viticulture Field Specialist at Iowa State University, an official frost is defined as a temperature drop to 28 degrees that lasts for four hours. During dormancy, vines can withstand these events. However, as buds begin to swell in the spring, water content increases and the buds lose their resistance to cold temperatures. By the time a bud bursts and becomes a shoot, the plant progressively loses its ability to tolerate a freeze.

Basically, there are two types of frost protection: passive methods, which are vineyard practices designed to avoid or minimize spring freeze damage; and active protection methods, which involve modification of the vineyard climate by utilizing atmospheric heat, adding heat or draining cold air from the site to prevent temperatures from dropping into the danger zone. Passive protection methods can be divided into those which are done prior to vineyard establishment and those which are done after vineyard establishment. White recommends four basic management practices to reduce the potential for frost damage:

  1. Site selection
  2. Cultivar selection
  3. Soil management
  4. Long pruning

Most important, said White, is to match the grape cultivar with the climate. Average dates for bud break among cultivars can vary by as much as several weeks, so choosing a cultivar based on its growth cycle can make a difference in survival rates. Cultivars that have an early bud break could be ruined by a late spring frost, whereas a cultivar with later bud burst could survive that same freeze event.

Site selection is just as critical, White told The Grapevine Magazine. Vineyards planted on upland slopes will fare much better than those planted in low areas, because cold air flows downhill and accumulates in pockets close to the ground. A vineyard"s exposure to the sun can also make a difference. Vineyards planted on the south-facing slopes will be warmer than those facing away from the sun, and are more likely to bud out earlier in the spring. Planting on north-facing slopes instead south slope can delay bud burst and reduce the possibility of frost damage.

White"s third strategy for frost protection (soil management) can be used to provide a natural barrier for frost, or to delay bud burst. In the first instance, soil that is kept firm, moist and exposed to sunlight will improve the ability of the ground to absorb and store heat. This can warm the air in contact with the vine, and decrease the severity of a frost event. One way to take advantage of these natural buffers is to wet the top foot of soil two to three days before a frost event. Another is to closely mow cover crops, as these crops reflect sunlight and deplete water from the soil, causing the soil to hold less heat. On the other hand, if the objective is to delay bud burst, it"s more important to keep the ground cooler, either by using cover crops to draw moisture from the soil, or by mulching the ground around the vines to slow thermal heating. "Soil temperature has more impact on bud growth than ambient temperatures," White stated. "With these strategies, you can delay bud break by as much as three to five days."

Pruning practices, too, can help reduce damage on sites that are frost-prone. White recommends "long pruning," where canes are pruned to long spurs during the winter, and then cut again after bud break once the danger of frost has occurred. "The farthest bud on the tip of the vine breaks out first," explained White. "If you ultimately want 50 buds per vine, you prune to 100 buds. Then, when you prune again, you leave just the number of buds you need. It"s basically an insurance policy."

Active methods of frost protection— such as heaters, wind machines, frost fans, cold air drains, sprinklers or combinations of these — may be necessary to supplement passive methods to ensure risk of frost damage. Active frost protection methods are applied prior to and during frost events to prevent the loss of heat or add sufficient heat to maintain the temperature of the plant above freezing. (For more information, see "Methods of Vineyard Frost Protection, Dr. Paul Domoto, Department of Horticulture Iowa State University" )

One of the oldest methods of active frost protection is the use of heaters or fires to warm the vineyards. Today, because of environmental concerns, only certain types of heating systems are allowed. Heaters provide radiant heat to the plants around them, adding as much as five degrees to the vineyard. Heaters do have their drawbacks though. Plants must be in direct line of the heat source, which means that many heaters may be necessary to protect the vineyard. Also, heaters can be expensive, with labor costs required to light the heaters and costs of fuel.

Cold Air Drain Diagram


A more common method of frost protection (a wind machine) is designed to manipulate the air during radiation frosts, which occur on cold clear nights when there is no wind. During these conditions, heat stored in the ground during the day radiates into the open sky, allowing an inversion layer to develop. In an inversion, atmospheric conditions are inverse or opposite of normal daytime conditions when air temperature decreases with height. Rather, cold air collects near the ground while warmer air lies above this trapped cold layer. Wind machines mix these layers to protect against frost. The higher the temperature of the upper air layer, the greater the protection provided by a wind machine. Wind machines are often used in conjunction with heaters. Combined, heaters and wind machines can provide protection down to approximately 26 degrees Fahrenheit, while heaters alone can provide protection down to 27 degrees. (See "Vineyard Frost Protection,a Guide for Northern Coastal California")

Cold air drains, on the other hand, address the problem more directly: they break up the stratified air that forms on a radiant frost night. When the cold air settles near the ground in low-elevation areas, the air becomes trapped, and cannot drain away from the vineyard. As this cold air accumulates, frost damage occurs. Steve Hammersmith, president of Shur Farms Frost Protection has developed The Shur Farms Cold Air Drain® to "selectively extract" the cold air. The drain thrusts the cold air upward to a height of nearly 300-feet, allowing the warmer air from above to settle downward. As the cold air rises, it mixes with the above warmer, less dense air layer until it is dispersed horizontally. "When more cold air flows in than can flow out, that air will continue to build up, eventually causing a frost," Hammersmith told The Grapevine Magazine. "We are manipulating the air flow — and modifying the microclimate —to prevent this build-up from happening." Cold air drains are most effective in low-lying areas such as valleys and swales where cold air tends to pool.

Frost Protection

Yet another method of frost protection is an overhead sprinkling system. As the water sprayed on the vine shoot freezes, it releases heat energy, which keeps the temperature of the shoot at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. To be effective, sprinklers should be started before the temperature drops to freezing and run until there is no longer any danger of frost. If water is stopped before the danger has passed, super cooling may occur and cause more damage than the frost alone would cause. Overhead sprinkler systems are only cost-effective for vineyards with irrigation systems in place.

Frost protection systems are not limited to the ones discussed in this article. Other options include use of helicopters to mix warm and cold air in the vineyard, microsprayers for sprinkling when little water is available, and thermal blankets and fibrous, semi-porous materials to trap heat at night. In addition, there are new products on the market that, when sprayed on the vines, actually change the metabolism of the plant in order to delay bud break. Whatever method or combination of methods a vineyard operator selects will depend on an evaluation of the microclimate, weather patterns, initial costs of the systems, operating costs, time and labor requirements and risk of crop loss, Remember, Mother Nature always bats last, but you can improve your odds of success by having a strong, defensive system in place.

By Nan McCreary for The Grapevine Magazine

http://www.thegrapevinemagazine.net/stories/2014-winter/spring-frost-protection.php

 


The Physics of Frost in the vineyard
05 May, 2014

Growers know what frost is, but few may understand the physics behind how it develops. Such an understanding is useful
when figuring out how to protect your vines from frost damage. 

 At Shur Farms, we specialize in agricultural frost prevention and work with growers throughout North America. We designed and installed the first North American cold air drainage system in the late 1990s and began manufacturing and marketing the Cold Air Drain in 2001. Our frost protection technology is most effective in undulating topography, but the basic principles around which we base our technology are relevant to protecting against frost damage in most areas. 

 First, it is important to understand two thermal processes: radiation and conduction. 

Radiation is how energy travels through space. Energy lost from the ground due to radiation will not warm the air, but will instead be lost to space. Different materials radiate heat at different rates and the faster a material radiates heat, the more quickly it cools. 

 For example, the ground will radiate heat faster than the air. Conduction is the process whereby heat transfers from molecule to molecule. An ice cube on one end of a steel rod will cause the rod to conduct heat all the way from the other end of that rod, eventually cooling the entire rod. 

Another important concept is unobstructed radiation loss. This is when there is no break up of radiation loses such as clouds moving in overhead or a wind. For example, say a valley basin fills with lethal cold air in four hours under unobstructed radiation loss conditions. This situation could lead to frost damage because when the basin is filled the plant tissues are submerged in a lethal cold air mass. However, if wind or clouds come every 2 hours and obstruct the filling process, the basin will never fill and there will be no frost threat. 

 Typical nighttime conditions for radiation frost are clear skies and no wind. On such a night the ground will start out being warmer than the air because during the day the ground is absorbing and storing heat that is coming from the sun. 

When the sun goes down the ground will start losing heat through radiation. Different soil types with different water densities will lose heat at different rates, e.g. loose sandy soil will cool more quickly than heavy dense clay soils and dry soil will cool faster than wet soil. 

 The soil will eventually become colder than the surrounding air temperature. There is a risk of radiation frost occurring only when the soil temperature dips lower than the air temperature. As long as the soil temperature remains warmer than the air, then there can be no cooling of the air around the plants and thus there is no possibility of radiation frost. 

When the soil becomes colder than the air layer in contact with the ground, the ground will start chilling the air from the ground up through conduction. This is when the inversion layer starts to develop as now the lower layers of the atmosphere are colder than the higher ones. 

The most dangerous nights for frost is when the ground has very little heat stored in it due to cold winds or cloud cover inhibiting the absorption of energy and heat into the soil during the preceding days. If the skies become clear during the night and the ground is at or near the air temperature, then the ground will quickly become colder than the air and the inversion layer will start to develop. 

Under these conditions, the risk of frost is greatly increased. The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses the deeper that cold air can accumulate causing increased temperature differentials within the growing, and the greater the risk of frost damage.

The air becomes stratified when the cooler air layer, which is heavier and denser, develops below the warmer layers above. The denser and heavier strati are affected by gravity and will flow downhill if there is a slope. 

This downhill flow, called katabatic flow, is along the ground and the depth of the flow will vary from a few inches to several feet depending on the amount of cold air being generated upstream and the angle of slope.  

The area upslope of the basin that is feeding cold air (airshed) into it determines the amount or mass of cold air, while the angle of slope determines the speed of the air moving downhill. The steeper the slope, the faster the downhill speed. If cold air does not submerge plant tissue, then there is no risk of frost damage. This is why steep hillsides and other well drained areas do not experience radiation frost damage, even though the ground temperature may be the same as the ground temps in the accumulation area. 

Under inversion conditions, the air is a stratified fluid, subject to the laws of fluid dynamics and behaving like all fluids do. Unlike some fluids that become more viscous (thicker and slower flow like motor oil and molasses) as they become colder, air becomes less viscous as it becomes colder and so can flow even more easily. 

Any area where more cold air flows into than can flow out is considered to have insufficient drainage. Such areas will start to accumulate cold air. When this cold air mass builds to a height that submerges plant tissue, there is risk of frost damage. These areas are called frost pockets. 

As long as there is sufficient drainage to allow this colder air to remove itself, or the plant tissue is at a height above the critical cold air layers, there will be no frost damage. As this colder air flows downhill and accumulates in the lower valleys and frost pockets where there is insufficient drainage, or as the flow deepens, it may submerge the plant tissue in a lethal cold air mass. 

Because the ground loses heat at a consistent rate during unobstructed radiation loss conditions, and the hours available for radiation loses are fairly consistent during the growing season, the amount of cold air generated and the damage patterns during a frost night are also fairly consistent. 

moisture), and it doesn’t matter if this is a January night or a July night. The difference is that in July there is much more heat stored in the ground and a much shorter night. There may not be enough time for ground to lose enough heat to cool below the air temperature, thus there would be no cooling of the air along the ground, no stratification, no katabatic flow, no accumulation of cold air, and no inversion developing. 

The longer the period of unobstructed radiation losses, the deeper the cold air mass can become in the accumulation areas and the greater the temperature differential will be between the well-drained areas and the accumulation areas. For instance, if the regional temperature is 33F, then hillsides and other well drained-areas will be at or very near this temperature. 

Because the mass of cold air is determined by the heat loss from the air shed areas feeding into the accumulation basin, and the speed of flow is determined by the angle of slope, there is a specific amount of time required for cold air to accumulate and differentiate substantially from the regional temperature. 

For instance, it may take 2 hours for enough cold air to flow into a specific frost pocket to build up deep enough to submerge plants in lethal cold air. Every hour may lower the temperature in the frost pocket by 1F, so after 2 hours the temperature on the hillside is 33F and in the pocket it will be 31F. If a wind or clouds come up every hour, the accumulated cold air and temperature differential will be removed and there will be no threat of frost damage. However, if there is no wind or clouds for 5 hours, then the temperature on the hillside will still be 33F (regional low temperature), but the temperature in the frost pocket will now be 28F. Remember that understanding the physics behind frost is the first step to protecting your crops from frost damage 

Hot Spotter
  Professional grade frost protection covers up to ¼ acre Eliminates chronic frost hot spots with the power of proven Cold Air Drain® technology   Easy to use Just locate your hot spot then ...
Cold Air Drain
Cold Air Drain®  Overview COVERAGE & DIMENSIONS: #925   Cold Air Drain® 2-3 acres* Unit Size: 72in x 72in x 74in 843lb** #1550 Cold Air Drain® 6-9 acres* Unit Size: 96in x 96...

About the Cold Air Drain®

Cold Air Drain® Overview

COVERAGE & DIMENSIONS:

#925   Cold Air Drain® 2-3 Acres*    Unit Size: 72in x 72in x 74in 843lb** #1550 Cold Air Drain® 6-9 Acres*   Unit Size: 96in x 96in x 89in 1,100lb** #3510 Cold Air Drain®12-16 Acres* Unit Size: 125in x 125in x 114in 2,160lb**

*Depending on severity of situation.
**Weights are approximate.

Overview of the Cold Air Drain®A. PROPELLER:   All aluminum construction, balanced, jig-formed to provide complex contour needed for high aerodynamic efficiency.

B. GEARBOX:  ISO registered (International Organization for Standards), AGMA Rated (American Gear Manufacturers Association), high efficiency right angle bevel gearbox, cast iron housing, aluminum caps, carburized and case hardened gears.

C. WIND TUNNEL HOUSING:   Computer-designed 8-panel model, CNC (Computer Numerically Controlled) manufacturing, all steel construction, bell inlet specially designed to deliver maximum thrust to propel cold air.

D. BASE: All steel freestanding base, precision engineered tower supports designed to reduce movement and vibration in tower, cold roll steel shafts with keyways, precision ball bearings with cast iron housings for quiet and smooth operation, quality industrial grade #5 fasteners, electrostatic spray powder coating.

E. LIFT BRACKETS: Integrated forklift/tractor brackets to provide complete portability for easy unloading and transporting in and out of the field.

F. DRIVELINE: Balanced 3-piece design, industrial universal joints, safety orange plastic guards, 1 3/8in spline standard tractor PTO yoke, stabilizer bearing, keyway, and set screw.

Technical Specifications

How the Cold Air Drain® Works


Radiation frosts occur during clear, cold nights with no wind. The ground loses heat stored during the day allowing an inversion layer to develop. In an inversion, the warmer air layer sits above the cold air layer that is closest to the ground.

During a radiation frost night, the heaviest cold air molecules flow downhill, like water, due to gravity. This cold air settles in low elevation areas that do not allow for adequate drainage. As the cold air accumulates in an area, frost damage occurs.

The Cold Air Drain® thrusts the cold air upward to a height of nearly 300ft (91.44m). As the coldest air is being sent up, it collects and mixes with the warmer, lighter air from above.  This helps to give the cold air continuous lift and allows it to rise higher, until it is dispersed into the upper inversion layer. The coldest air layer is drained and will not fall back down. 

The Cold Air Drain® effect changes the temperature in the lower elevation, frost-prone areas to be more similar to the temperatures in the higher elevation, non-frost areas. The grower may expect a more consistent yield in the lower and higher elevation areas.

Benefits

CONVENIENT


check markCUSTOMIZED SYSTEMS!

For each project area, a Computerized Frost Analysis is offered, thereby eliminating much of the guesswork and overspending that often accompanies the purchase of frost protection.
check markVIRTUALLY MAINTENANCE FREE!
This aesthetic, low profile unit is easily owner-installed and maintained.
check markVERSATILE!
Shur Farms Cold Air Drain® is stand alone frost protection, or may be used in conjunction with water, wind machines, and heaters to enhance their benefits. The Cold Air Drain® is available in 3 sizes (covering approximately 2-16 acres) and has numerous power options (tractor PTO, gasoline engine, electric motor, temperature controlled auto-start).
red check markDOESN'T CAUSE DAMAGE!
Unlike wind machines and sprinklers, the Cold Air Drain® can be run all night without causing damage during a winter freeze or changing weather conditions.  
red check markPORTABLE!
Integrated forklift/tractor brackets provide complete portability for easy unloading and transporting in and out of the field.

COST-EFFECTIVE


check markLOW OPERATING COST!

Shur Farms Cold Air Drain® has the lowest operating costs of any active frost protection method. Most systems will have a 100% payback in the first year of operation.
red check markNO MAINTENANCE CONTRACTS!
The Cold Air Drain® is easily owner-maintained.
red check markMINIMIAL SITE PREP!
All Cold Air Drain® units are built on a metal skid and are freestanding. No cement pad is needed.
check markSIMPLE INSTALLATION!
The Cold air Drain® arrives almost fully assembled and is easily put in place using a standard forklift or tractor.
check markEVENS BUD BREAK!
The Cold Air Drain® evens out temperatures and bud break.

 

SUSTAINABLE


check markSAVES FUEL!

The Cold Air Drain® #1550 uses just approximately 1 gallon of fuel per hour. 
check markSAVES WATER!
The Cold Air Drain® allows you to start frost protection irrigation systems later and turn off earlier, thereby saving water.
check markQUIET OPERATION!
Quiet enough to be used near residential areas, businesses, and roads. (Please see the Decibel Levels page for details.)
check markENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY!
Power units and fuel tanks are low emissions and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-certified.
check markCOMMITTED TO MAKING THE BEST PRODUCT!
Ongoing research at the Shur Farms® facility and in the field is done to ensure quality products and services meet changing needs and regulations. Shur Farms Frost Protection® also works closely with growers, agricultural associations, academics, and government and nonprofit organizations to improve products, teach safe frost protection techniques, and help address local sustainability issues.

 

Saving Water

Protects against frost damage without water.
Frost protection using sprinklers uses a lot of water! Many areas have extremely stringent water usage restrictions, in which sprinklers for frost protection are often not a viable option. Conventional sprinklers use approximately 50 gallons/minute per acre. Microsprinklers may also be used for limited frost protection, but the crop must be irrigated simultaneously with a minimum flow rate of approximately 35-40 gallons/minute per acre1, but requiring approximately 70-80 gallons/minute to be effective2The Cold Air Drain® provides powerful frost protection without using any water!

Complies with water conservation regulations.
The Cold Air Drain® meets water conservation regulations by using moving air, not water, for frost protection. By not usingwater for frost protection, endangered species are saved, thereby avoiding regulatory penalties and maintaining the natural environment.

Safe to use in any type freeze.
The Cold Air Drain® is safe to use during any type freeze or weather condition.  During nights with changing conditions, the use of water may actually cause damage.3

Makes sprinkler usage more efficient.
Shur Farms Cold Air Drain® is compatible with under vine/tree and over vine/tree sprinkler irrigation systems. When the Cold Air Drain® is used in conjunction with sprinklers, the water can be started later and shut off earlier by keeping the temperature in the field higher for a longer period of time.

Reduces risk of frost damage from sprinkler failure.
The Cold Air Drain® will reduce the dip in temperature when sprinklers are initially turned on. The Cold Air Drain® also makes the failure of sprinklers less likely by removing the coldest air layer along the ground that can freeze water lines.

 

Saving Energy

Uses less fuel than wind machines and heaters.
The Cold Air Drain® #1550 uses approximately 1 gallon of fuel per hour to protect 6-9 acres. That's almost 1/10 the amount of fuel needed to operate traditional wind machines and 1/400 the amount of fuel needed to operate heaters to protect 10 acres.

Significantly reduces fuel costs.
The Cold Air Drain® significantly reduces fuel costs because less fuel required to operate the Cold Air Drain®. See the Cost Comparison page for further fuel cost information.

Get the most out of every gallon of fuel. 
The high efficiency Cold Air Drain® better utilizes every gallon of fuel than lower efficiency wind machines and heaters. See the Cost Comparison page for efficiency ratings.

Customized frost protection eliminates waste.
The Cold Air Drain® customized frost protection system provides targeted frost protection for your project area, thereby eliminating waste.

 

Reducing Noise

Quiet enough to be used near residential areas, businesses, and roads.
Decibel levels for the Cold Air Drain® are significantly less than traditional wind machines. Decibel levels for wind machines may be approximately 90dB at 126ft1and levels as high as 55-70dB at 984ft2! Compare wind machine levels with the Cold Air Drain® #1550, in which decibel levels range from approximately 63-69dB at 120ft. Additional information about decibel level for the Cold Air Drain® can be found on the Decibel Levels page.

No annoying and painful low frequency pitch when operating.
Low frequency sound generated by the turning of wind machine blades can be disruptive3 during the night when wind machines most often run. The Cold Air Drain® has a wind-resistant propeller to reduce unnecessary noise.

Complies with many noise ordinances.
Complies with many noise ordinances, including noise limits and best practices in the Napa, California region, as well as New Zealand and Canada. Shur Farms Frost Protection® works with growers to help them reduce frost protection generated noise.

 

Reducing Air & Water Pollution

EPA-certified products to reduce air pollution.
Power units and fuel tanks are Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-certified to ensure low emissions.

Complies with air quality regulations.
The Cold Air Drain® helps agricultural regions maintain clean air to comply with air quality regulations.

No toxic water run-off.
The Cold Air Drain® does not contribute to toxic water run-off that pollutes groundwater, streams, lakes, and rivers.

Customized frost protection reduces pollution.
The Cold Air Drain® customized frost protection system provides targeted frost protection for your project area, thereby reducing pollution caused by engine emissions.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Cold Air Drain®
How many acres do the units cover, what are the dimensions of the units, and how much do the units weigh?
Please see the About the Product page for answers to these questions.

How do you power the units?
Gas engine, tractor PTO, electric motor, and temperature-controlled auto-start are available power options. The Power Options page provides additional information about available power options.

What size tractor do I need for the PTO model?
The #925 requires a minimum 10HP at 540 RPM, the #1550 a minimum 15HP at 540 RPM, and the #3510 a minimum 35HP at 540 RPM. 

How can the Cold Air Drain® move so much air, yet use so little fuel?
The octagonal wind tunnel design, 90% efficient propellers, and customized frost protection system designs for optimal placement allows for
the Cold Air Drain® to obtain maximum efficiency.

Do you add heat to the units or do they just move air?
The Cold Air Drain® moves air...a lot of it! Please see the About the Product page for information about how the Cold Air Drain® works.
Does the Cold Air Drain® blow up or down?
The Cold Air Drain® pulls in the coldest air from along the ground and thrusts it upwards. Please see the About the Productpage for
information about how the Cold Air Drain® works.

When the cold air is sent up does it fall back down?
No. The cold air is mixed with the warmer, lighter air from above allowing it to continue rising. Ultimately, the cold air is dispersed into the upper inversion layer and will not fall back down. Please see the About the Product page for additional information about how the Cold Air Drain® works.

How does the Cold Air Drain ® compare to a traditional wind machine?
The Cold Air Drain® is much more effective than a traditional wind machine in areas where cold air accumulates. It is also more cost-effective. The initial start-up cost for a Cold Air Drain® is approximately 1/3 of the cost for a traditional wind machine and the fuel consumption is approximately 1/10 that of a traditional wind machine. Additionally, there are no installation costs or maintenance contracts. The Cold Air Drain® removes cold air, may be used during changing weather conditions, and is quieter than a traditional wind machine. Please see the Cold Air Drain® versus Wind Machine page for additional information about the differences between the Cold Air Drain® and traditional wind machines.

Will the Cold Air Drain® work for row crops? 
The Cold Air Drain® generally protects crops of 12-18in or higher.

Can the Cold Air Drain® be used with other types of frost protection?
Yes. The Cold Air Drain® can be used alone or with heaters, wind machines, and sprinklers. Please contact a Shur Farms®representative to determine the best frost protection plan for your site.

 

Reliability
Who has Cold Air Drain® units protecting their crops? Where are these units located?
The Cold Air Drain® protects a wide variety of crops that range from small, local farms all the way to international commercial enterprises. Thousands of Cold Air Drains® are protecting trees and vines throughout the world.

How long have you been selling the Cold Air Drain®?
The Cold Air Drain® has been commercially manufactured and distributed since 2001.

Do you have any research on the Cold Air Drain®?
Yes. Decades of research have gone into the Cold Air Drain ®. The in-house Research & Development department conducts product research and datalogger temperature studies at the Shur Farms® research facility and in the field. Selected publications are available on the Publications page.

How do I know if the Cold Air Drain® will work for me?  
Shur Farms® conducts a free, no-obligation Computerized Frost Analysis to recommend a customized system design. Customized maps, a system design, and passive frost protection recommendations are included in the report. See theGetting Started page for more information.


How can I tell if my unit is working?
Temperatures in lower, frost-prone areas will be more similar to higher, non-frost areas when the Cold Air Drain® is operating. Crop yields will be more consistent throughout the protected area. The How Can I Tell that My Cold Air Drain® is Working? page provides additional information.


Is there a warranty on the Cold Air Drain®?
Yes. There is a 3 year mechanical warranty. Assistance with parts and service is available from Shur Farms Frost Protection's® in-house Parts & Service department and Honda's warranty stations.

 

Transportation & Installation
How are the Cold Air Drain® units shipped?
Cold Air Drain® units are generally shipped by flatbed truck almost fully assembled. They can also be shipped disassembled with assembly instructions. 

How much does shipping cost?
The best available cost will be determined at the time of order. Full load pricing is always offered.

How are the Cold Air Drain® units moved?
The Cold Air Drain® has built in forklift brackets and may be easily moved by forklift or tractor.

Do you come out and install the Cold Air Drain® units in my field?
Professional installation is not necessary. The low-profile Cold Air Drain® is easily owner-installed and maintained.

 

Parts & Service
Who services the Cold Air Drain® units?
The Cold Air Drain® is nearly maintanenace free and is easily owner maintained. For parts and service questions, please call Shur Farms® 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 or e-mail info@shurfarms.com

What if I need help during non-standard business hours?
Please call 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 for trouble-shooting assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

What do I do if I need a part?
Please contact the Parts & Service department at 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 or info@shurfarms.com for help finding a part.

Where can I find additional information about my engine?
The Cold Air Drain® Operator's Manual includes the manual for your engine. Please contact the Parts & Service department at 877-842-9688 or info@shurfarms.com for help locating a local warranty station. Local warranty stations are also listed in your Operator's Manual.

What do I do if I lose my Operator's Manual?
Please contact the Parts & Service department at 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 or info@shurfarms.com. A copy of the Operator's Manual can be e-mailed to you.

 

Pricing
Do you ever have sales?
Shur Farms Frost Protection® offers several annual sales. Please see the Sales page for details about sales.

May I add an engine or upgrade later?
Absolutely! Please contact Shur Farms® at 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 or info@shurfarms.com.

 

About Us
Who developed the Cold Air Drain®?
Shur Farms Frost Protection® and its partners designed and developed the first Cold Air Drain® unit in the 1990's. Shur Farms Frost Protection® is the only manufacturer and distributor of the Cold Air Drain®.

Do you work with grower groups and other organizations?
Shur Farms Frost Protection® is a partner and active member of various grower groups, professional associations, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations that promote sustainability and agricultural development. Shur Farms Frost Protection® provides educational materials and presentations for the growing community at no charge.

How did you get the name "Shur Farms"?
The name, Shur Farms, is based on the names of the owners' family and is the name of their family-owned walnut orchard and cattle ranch.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions?
You can call Shur Farms Frost Protection® at 877-842-9688*, 909-825-2035 or e-mail info@shurfarms.com.


Do you have a mailing list? What do you send?
Yes. Shur Farms® sends quarterly newsletters with sales, events, and helpful frost information. To receive the newsletter, please subscribe to the mailing list. Past newsletters are also available for your reading pleasure.