Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hooptie Houses: A winter container garden experiment

Optimistic is the nice way of describing what we did. We kept waiting for that magical stretch of sunny autumn days to squeeze the last remaining redness out of the clusters of unripe green tomatoes on our tomato plants. Yeah, that didn’t happen. It’s been pretty rainy so far. The result is we planted our winter garden way late.

So what to do? Get cheap and crafty.

We're trying this experiment to see if we can make up for lost time. We built some small DIY hoop houses for our containers: micro container-garden greenhouses to kickstart our late plantings. We made ours from things you probably have hanging around the house. They’ve been working like fantastic little charms, getting our seeds to sprout and grow quickly. And, the benefit has also been that we can make the overall roof taller by raising the metal spans as the plants grow. Here's what we did if you want to try it out yourself (click to zoom in on the image):


Stephanie said...

Yes, I too have been hoping for an indian summer. This is an excellent idea. I've been reading about mini-greenhouse techniques to extend growing. Lots of great free resources online.

pjkobulnicky said...

The issue with greenhouses is that the smaller they are the more difficult to maintain reasonable bounds to the interior micro-climate. They heat up too quickly and they cool off too quickly without one giving them near constant attention. Let a little greenhouse go on a sunny day at noon and you can cook the contents.