Greenhouses and Season Extenders
Not everyone is fortunate enough to live in a climate where food can be grown and harvested all year long. In northern climates, winter’s chill brings planting and harvesting to a halt for millions of gardeners. A family’s food needs, however, don’t stop after the fall harvest ends.
Rather than hang up the garden tools and depend entirely on food trucked to the grocery store, why not extend the growing season? By using one of the structures listed below, you can add weeks to the spring and fall growing seasons, and in most climates, you can even grow cool-season crops in the middle of winter. In addition, greenhouses and season extenders protect tender plants and fruits from both severe weather and pests. From the sturdy and roomy greenhouses to the light and compact row covers, these season-extending solutions are easy to set up and use, and they are durable enough to last for years.
Backyard greenhouse offers 12-month growing season
Now you can grow your own locally produced organic food all year—affordably and in a small space. The Early Bloomer Greenhouse is a functional, durable and affordable starter greenhouse kit for anyone who wants to enjoy year-round growing. Measuring 8 feet wide and 8 feet long, the Early Bloomer Greenhouse offers plenty of room to grow everything from heirloom tomatoes to salad greens, and it fits nicely in even small yards. The center height of 6-feet 3-inches is ideal for tall plants or even small fruit trees.
This greenhouse features a Solexx brand corrugated plastic covering that diffuses light to create ideal inside growing conditions and prevent leaf burn. The covering also provides the highest insulation available in hobby greenhouses. The extremely strong base along with the Solexx corrugated plastic greenhouse covering makes the Early Bloomer Greenhouse sturdy enough to withstand powerful winds—unlike many small greenhouses. Yet the entire greenhouse is light enough to pick it up and move it to the best sun exposure, or even relocate it right over your existing garden to get an early start planting seeds and extend the harvest in the fall.
A large 19-inch by 30-inch greenhouse vent assembly is included to maintain plenty of air circulation for healthy plants. (A solar-powered automatic opener is optional.) Two full-length, easy-access hanging rods at a convenient height run the entire length of the greenhouse and support 200 pounds each to overwinter your favorite hanging plants.
The Early Bloomer Greenhouse sells for $1,270 from The Greenhouse Catalog, www.greenhousecatalog.com, (800) 825-1925. Delivery is free within the 48 contiguous states.
Garden tunnel kits extend your gardening season
Plant your garden an extra 10 days earlier, or grow lettuce and greens into the late fall and early winter with Ken-Bar’s new Garden Tunnel Kits. By warming the soil in the spring, garden tunnels help plants mature up to two weeks earlier than normal. The extra heat can increase yields and protect crops from garden pests. In the fall, tunnels protect plants from frost and wind damage, so you can harvest later. At the Harris Seeds test garden in western New York, lettuce kept growing into December—even after 12 inches of snow! To create a tunnel, simply place support wires every 5 feet and stretch the covering over the supports. Place soil along the edges of the cover to secure it to the ground. The 50-foot Garden Tunnel Kit, which sells for $29.95, includes 12 54-inch-long support wires made of heavy-duty 10 gauge wire. The 100-foot kit includes 24 wire supports and sells for $49.95. Replacement covering is available in 100’ rolls. Available online at http://www.harrisseeds.com/storefront/p-14538-row-cover-tunnel-cover-wire-100-ft-kit.aspx