Saturday, September 29, 2012

Get set up for harvesting all winter!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Portable greenhouse

The chill is in the air.  The lettuce and other cold season crops are loving the cool temperatures and showers we are getting this wonderful time of year.

Last winter, I was able to harvest through the entire winter season.  I used a portable, plastic green house.  It is about a 3 by 3 by 3 feet and held 3 Earthboxes and 3 pots.  I have also used it directly in the garden bed and it worked equally well.
Greenhouse in January
I placed gallon milk jugs, painted black, and filled with water in each corner of the greenhouse.  The milk jugs absorb the heat during the day and release it back in the green house at night, moderating the temperature.

You can buy portable greenhouses in all sizes.  Be careful of tall greenhouses; it is difficult to keep the whole space warm without electrical warming.  You can add a simple lightbulb or a blanket heater on the floor if you want to use a tall greenhouse.

The biggest risk for using a green house is it getting too hot!  When it is a clear, sunny day, it can get quite steamy quickly.  For days getting warm, you need to allow for some venting.  Open the zipper more for really warm days and for freezing days with no sun, keep it zipped up tight.

You can also use individual covers on plants as well to extend the harvest.  Since you can’t put in additional mass (you can try black rocks or a brick), they likely will not get you through the entire winter.

You can bring many of your potted herbs indoors, on a protected porch or even in a garage with windows.

Don’t forget sprouts for fresh veggies all winter long grown indoors!

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