Monthly Book Giveaway - February 2023

Our Hoophouses #2: How a Hoophouse helped my garden


This is part 2 in a 14 part series: Our Hoophouses

This is my first year ever using hoophouses and I can now say that I am a gardener! It was a huge success.

The main goal for using a Hoophouse was to keep the critters from eating my plants. Little did I know that I would be having my best harvest ever! 

Inside the little green greenhouse (Hoophouse), I planted tomatoes on the north side and beans on the south. Then, I covered the ground (which was just  grass) with a thick layer of straw. 

The plants flourished and my harvest never stopped - and we are now nearing the end of September. 

In the larger white greenhouse (Hoophouse), I tried my hand at self-watering containers (that’s another story) and, also, planted other plants directly in the ground (ground which had been under a trailer for about 20 years). I then covered those plants with a layer of straw. 

These, too, all flourished and I’m just now harvesting peppers. (We had a late start). 

What did I learn?

  • straw /mulch is a must 
  • worm castings are a big help to supplement the soil
  • cotton yarn isn’t strong enough to hold up the tomato plants
  • pruning the tomatoes is important because of lack of airflow inside the enclosure
  • water, water, water
  • my squash plants didn’t like it inside because of lack of air flow to dry leaves after watering
  • set up a drip line so you can water without touching the leaves 
  • the hoophouses don’t hold the heat overnight .. they heat things up in the day,  they stop the cold winds, and they protect plants from frost, but the temperature still drops 

Would I buy a Hoophouse again? 

Am I hooked on hoophouses? You bet ya!
My two structures served my original purpose of keeping the critters away from my plants and they protected the plants from the high winds that we had. 

Next step: the fall & winter Hoophouse garden
- Debbie

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