Kitchen Gardening

Floating Row Cover and Grow Tunnels Extend the Growing Season

Although summer has gone and fall is here, it does not mean the end of the growing season.

Although summer has gone and fall is here, it does not mean the end of the growing season. By using floating row cover or a grow tunnel covered with it–you can enjoy cool weather crop until the weather freezes–and some of the hardy ones might even last through the winter.

Recently, I received a big box from AgFabric , containing a 7-foot-wide roll of floating row cover and fiberglass rods for making a grow tunnel. This will allow me to garden through the fall and into the winter in my zone 7 garden; some lettuces might go with a freeze, however kale and brassicas should last throughout the cold weather. Row cover comes in rolls of various weights as well as widths and lengths. https://www.agfabric.com/ Besides allowing a longer growing season, using row cover will keep the browsing deer, rabbits and insects from eating the garden.

The arrival of the tunnel, caused a flurry of garden activity at the end of the growing season… clearing off a row where dead or dying plants had been, pulling out weeds, adding amendments, tilling a new row, laying out and planting a row to fit in the dimensions of the tunnel, assembling the tunnel by bending the rods and then covering the rods with the floating row cover.

Logically, I planted the tallest plants down the center of the row and lower-growing greens down the sides. It is very important to water in the new plants before covering the plants with the row covering. Fortunately, Mother Nature cooperated and rained a gentle rain all night long after transplanting all of the plants. we waited a day to cover the tunnel to let the garden dry out just a bit.

Now all there is to do is wait for our harvest of cold-weather crops!

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