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Home made Winter protection

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Home made Winter protection

Post  Rhonda Evans on 1/7/2012, 4:18 pm

I started my garden from purchased seeds and of course planted way too many. Most are still small but getting close to the time I need to transplant. What can I use to protect the vegetables I plant from the cold that I can make from things I have at home? I have lettuce, spinach, swiss chard, cauliflower, broccoli, and red cabbage. Right now the weather is a warm 75 deg. in Houston Texas but it turns on a dime and dips down to close to below freezing between the months of January through March.
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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  boffer on 1/7/2012, 4:30 pm

Welcome to the forum. There's several ways to go about this.

1. Protecting the whole box with plastic or cloth sheets. To do this you could make a hoop house or a pup tent to support the 'tent' and and keep it off the plants.

2. You could use cloches for individual plants. They are things like 1 gal plastic milk jugs with the bottom cut off that sit over each plant to make a very mini-greenhouse effect. Clear tupperware bowls. One gallon vinegar jugs. I've seen 2-5 clear plastic containers of kitty litter, oil soak up stuff, and powdered detergent that would work.

3. Don't worry about it. Really! Everything you listed are cool crops and should be good down to the mid 20's with no problems. Growth will slow down while it's cold, but they will make it through OK.
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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  camprn on 1/7/2012, 4:52 pm

@boffer wrote:Welcome to the forum. There's several ways to go about this.

1. Protecting the whole box with plastic or cloth sheets. To do this you could make a hoop house or a pup tent to support the 'tent' and and keep it off the plants.

2. You could use cloches for individual plants. They are things like 1 gal plastic milk jugs with the bottom cut off that sit over each plant to make a very mini-greenhouse effect. Clear tupperware bowls. One gallon vinegar jugs. I've seen 2-5 clear plastic containers of kitty litter, oil soak up stuff, and powdered detergent that would work.

3. Don't worry about it. Really! Everything you listed are cool crops and should be good down to the mid 20's with no problems. Growth will slow down while it's cold, but they will make it through OK.
+1 and to the Square Foot Gardening Forum!

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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  Furbalsmom on 1/7/2012, 7:10 pm

welcome Rhonda,

We are happy to have you join us. And, look at you, already starting your seeds indoors. cheers Most of us are in cooler climes and are still looking forward to starting our seeds.

Boffer has given you a couple of good and pretty easy suggestions. My only addition is do not use the opaque or solid colored plastic jugs, be sure they are translucent to allow light to get in to your plants.

Good luck on your cool weather veggies and please be sure you keep us updated on your progress.
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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  miinva on 1/7/2012, 7:41 pm

Welcome to the forum Smile

You can find great information about cold weather gardening in Eliot Coleman's books, The Winter Harvest Handbook: Year Round Vegetable Production Using Deep Organic Techniques and Unheated Greenhouses and Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long. He gardens in Maine! Smile

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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  Ha-v-v on 1/7/2012, 8:23 pm

Welcome to the forum and welcome to the Lower South region sunny

We have so much growing time in our region its amazing ! Im now trying to extend that too.

There are a couple of fairly new threads about this very subject.

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t9498-season-extender

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t9442p30-square-foot-greenhouse-gardeners-check-in-please#92853

Let us know what you come up with and share your photos. We love photos Smile


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Thanks for the feedback :)

Post  Rhonda Evans on 1/7/2012, 8:38 pm

Thanks. I only buy 1/2 gallon clear milk jugs so they may not fit for long, but I will start saving them. I am not using the sq. foot method, but using my flowerbeds. In the summer I had peppers, tomatoes and basil. All 3 froze with the first freeze. I also had planted in the spring thyme, rosemary, parsley, sage and lavender and they are still living.
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Re: Home made Winter protection

Post  Goosegirl on 1/7/2012, 9:47 pm

@Rhonda Evans wrote: In the summer I had peppers, tomatoes and basil. All 3 froze with the first freeze.

Yep - all 3 of those are warm weather crops that will not survive a freeze. Basil is especially sensitive - turns a nasty black at the thought of a freeze!

GG
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