winter tunnel update

  I’ve been looking for my bottle of castor oil for a week now. There are vole holes in my winter tunnel and wanted to give the soil another dose. I finally found it. Of all places – in my new garden shed! I forgot about that spot. There it was with the empty pots and garden sprays. I’ll have to get used to having a shed. Today I opened up the tunnel. I’m really pleased with how everything is doing. Fortunately, no more vole damage, except a small bite…

inside my winter tunnel

My winter tunnel is full of greens. Spinach, several types of lettuce, arugula, radicchio, kale, chard, collards, salad turnips, daikon and salad radish, cilantro, some frilly red mustard, escarole, bok choi. Can’t beat this balmy December weather for cool weather crops! I have parsley, escarole, broccoli, beets and kale outside with no protection. Plants in my tunnel are from my winter seed sowing calendar, which is part of Skippy’s full-season planting calendar app. I planted everything to test the planting dates in the app. The app is $1.99 (iOS or…

the plastic is on my winter tunnel

I put greenhouse plastic over my garden hoops today. The hoops have two layers now: fabric row cover close to the plants and the plastic outside. The weather is slowly cooling off. Looks like I’ll be taking these covers off and on for the rest of the month. I’ll take it off when the plants can catch rain and sun on warmer days. Our weather seems about 10 degrees F above normal this year.

new old garden shed

My husband moved this old shed for me. It was up in the front of our new house. He disassembled it, made it a couple feet smaller, and reassembled it next to my garden.

plastic tunnel is getting ready to assemble

Right now, the skeleton of a tunnel is standing. Bare white PVC arches over thin metal hoops. When night time temperatures dip to freezing (32F), I pull cloth over the metal hoops and then remove it in the morning. I’m hoping to get some use out of the tunnel this year. Last year, voles or chipmunks ate everything inside once I closed the plastic up. This year’s attempt to keep critters out: – 6 inches of hardware cloth dug in around the edges of bed – castor oil/soap mix soaked…

new compost bins

About a month ago, my husband made me a pair of new compost bins. They are beautiful!! A big improvement over the 5 little round plastic ones I had before. The photos show how he made them. Slats are spaced 1 inch. The front panel sits in a slot at the bottom and it then held in place with a removable screw and bolt. In the spring, I will remove the front panels to turn and use the compost. A really nice feature is that he made a step on…

greens in plastic tunnel after a night at 22*F

I went to my garden to check on the plants after an icy cold night. Everything looks surprisingly good. Even greens outside of the plastic tunnel. I picked the last head of the lettuce growing outside. Its a big head of green butterhead was covered in lightweight row cover. There is some uncovered bok choi that I will remember to pick and eat for dinner tomorrow. Our next salads will come from the tunnel.


37* F outside this morning. A light snow is falling but not accumulating. I wish I had covered my winter bed last night, but did not. So this morning I went down to the garden and pulled the plastic cover over the hoops. I also covered my fall lettuce bed with Agribon light weight row cover. It was a painful task. I was reminded the hard way that I need to wear mittens at that temperature. (Especially if I am taking pictures.) My hands were so cold. They stung for…