Over the next four weeks, I will be taking part in a posting series related to the topic of “Homesteading in the Winter.”
Each Thursday there will be a new post on a different issue associated with the needs and unique challenges of living on a homestead (big or small, urban or rural) during the winter. I am a teaming up with several other bloggers to bring you this series and couldn’t be more excited.
We make homemade hoop houses on our homestead. I wrote a post about how we improvise them using masonry ladders a while back.
My friend Heather, The Homesteading Hippy, also did a post not too long ago on how she made a hoop house to extend her growing season. – http://thehomesteadinghippy.com/fall-gardening-make-a-hoop-house-to-extend-your-growing-season/ You should check it out.
Pretty simple idea – row cover – http://amzn.to/1ffx6AH is just any fabric you can use to cover your plants and protect them from frost. To get the most bang for your buck, the fabric should not be touching the plants themselves, which is why it is good to use it in conjunction with some type of hoop house.
Growing up in Florida, my parents would just use a lot of old blankets and sheets to protect our plants. Personally, I try to use Agribon – http://amzn.to/16Oms04 or other specially designed fabric to protect my plants. The problem I have is finding the stuff! It seems that row cover only shows up on the shelves the DAY of the expected frost. What ever happened to planning ahead?
A cold frame – http://amzn.to/1afeOMu is basically a mini greenhouse. Generally they are seen as boxes with glass or plexiglass on top and are placed directly on the ground to protect growing plants.
The cold frame that I use is elevated. I use it to start seeds and keep my late winter/early spring seedlings protected from low temperatures. (I wrote about growing with a cold frame here.)
Cold frames are very simple to build and use. DIYs abound on the internet.
A greenhouse – http://amzn.to/1dQXB3w is one of the best options for protecting your plants if you have the money and space. I dream of having one one day, but I am reluctant to do it on our current lot, as space is at a premium.
I think that about summarizes our winter plant protection on our homestead. What am I forgetting? What do you guys do where you live?
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