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Vegetable Gardening: Hoop tunnel questions/answers

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HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 11, 2011
12:10 PM

Post #8304854

I've learned a few things about hoop tunnels from fellow gardeners here a DG, but want to know more.

How long should the PVC pipe be? My beds are 34" - 36" wide by 24' long. I've measured the longest part of the inside of my Toyota Matrix, and I can manage up to 8' lengths.

Do I just stick the ends into the soil, or do they need to be fastened to something, or do the ends need to be slipped over something? I was thinking of re-bar.

I've tried floating row covers in the past, but the fabric tears easily. What alternatives do y'all suggest?

Thanks :)

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 11, 2011
1:32 PM

Post #8305041

PVC pipe comes in 10' lengths

I drive a piece of rebar into the ground and slip the PVC pipe over it to hold it in place.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 11, 2011
2:49 PM

Post #8305198

I get a length of pvc that is just a tad larger diameter than which diameter the hoops will be. Then, I cut it up into 12" sections and pound these into the ground around where the hoop ribs will go. Space them 12" apart. Then, just bend the ribs over and set them into the anchors on either side of your beds. I managed to retrieve all of my anchors when I moved by wetting the ground and using a pair of pliers? to grab em' They came up really easily.

Here's a collage of another option. The stiped sheet is my hoop, cause I hadn't bought the plastic yet. I've now got two rolls of clear plastic, 4 mil thick that I'll be using this season. And, if you notice, my ribs were spaced too far apart -- next set-up will have the ribs 12" apart. Also, in the sample pic, you can afix a brace piece down the center of the hoops for more stability, although I've not seen a lot of people doing that...

P.S. ALWAYS make sure your hoop is ventilated either by propping open the end(s), or you can punch holes all over it. I'm more inclined to control airflow by propping the ends. The holes will allow water to get inside, much like the WSing jug concept. Of course, if you want rainwater/water go for the holes!


Hugs!

This message was edited Jan 12, 2011 10:58 AM

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HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 12, 2011
10:05 AM

Post #8306655

paulgrow - Hmm... now I have to figure out how to get 10' PVC pipe into an 8' car! Hopefully it'll bend enough.

Gymgirl - your suggestion to purchase PVC pipe with a larger diameter is a good one - I hadn't thought of that.

Question:

If I cut a 10' pipe in half, will it be long enough to hoop over my 36" beds?

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 12, 2011
10:22 AM

Post #8306686

No need to cut it. I've driven home with my 10' pieces hanging out the window. Of course, when the wind hits 'em they start humming like an Aboriginal pipe! Drive slowly, carefully, hold on to em, and you'll make it.

Consider how much height you'd have bending only 5' over a 36" span. There's a calculation somewhere that will let you figure out how much height you'd have, but I'd have to Google it somewhere online.

Go with the 10'.

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 12, 2011
11:08 AM

Post #8306772

Gymgirl - when you say - go with the 10' - do you mean use this length as a hoop without cutting it?

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 12, 2011
11:28 AM

Post #8306811

Yes. Your beds are 3 ft. wide, right? 36"? Bending my 10' length over my concrete pad that was 60" wide gave me a height approximately 3-1/2 to 4 feet at the middle of the arch. I had my veggies in 5-gallon eBuckets, so I guess I needed that much height to accommodate the height of the plants in the buckets.

Sure wish I could figure out the calculation that would tell us how much height you'd get from 10' spanning 36" wide...

You've got some time for turkey and eye dropper basting? Go find us a formula! (smile)

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 12, 2011
12:37 PM

Post #8306970

Gymgirl - I couldn't find a formula, so I laid a 36" yard stick on the floor. Made an "arch" out of a 5' tape measure. The apex of the "hoop" was roughly at knee height - about 20" - that's as high as I need the hoop tunnels to be. I can cut each 10' PVC pipe in half.

The tunnels need to keep birds from eating the young peas! I haven't been able to grow peas for the past two seasons because birds eat the green shoots as soon as they appear above ground. Once the peas have reached a good size, they manage to stay ahead of the birds pecking at them.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 12, 2011
12:42 PM

Post #8306978

Yep. Genius. I finally found an online calculator that let me put in 5' long and 36" wide, and the apex of the "hoop" is exactly 1.64021 feet --- pretty darn close to your 20" calculation...

http://www.handymath.com/cgi-bin/arc18.cgi?submit=Entry

Way to go!

This message was edited Jan 12, 2011 2:43 PM

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 12, 2011
1:03 PM

Post #8307015

Gymgirl - thanks for the link, I saved it to my "favorites" in case I need it for another project.

I guess some shinbones are longer or shorter than mine (giggle)

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 12, 2011
1:41 PM

Post #8307090

Glad to help out!

I'll be racing home in a few to drop a few more seeds in some starter mix this evening!

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 13, 2011
5:30 AM

Post #8308018

I actually made mine hoop 12' to get enough height.
You can connect 2 pieces of PVC by using a coupling, it's very easy to do. My height is 4'.and the H.H is 7'wide.

Paul

Thumbnail by paulgrow
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HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 13, 2011
6:33 AM

Post #8308121

That looks like a neat set-up, Paul. Once I get used to hoop tunnels, I'm sure I'll use many of the ideas shared here.

Where did you purchase the plastic covering?
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 13, 2011
7:01 AM

Post #8308213

paulgrow, that is a really neat set up! And Gymgirl, I just seem to love your ideas. I keep printing them off and now need to go get more color ink cartrige for the printer! You guys rock!

HoneybeeNC, I've used old sheers for rowcover. You know, the sheer drapes my mother and grandmother had. They work well in white or off white. They let most of the sun in, wash up nice in the washing machine, and keep most bugs and birds out. I've found some of my supply at yard sales and some on clearance at Wally World. Some of them are too heavy, just the light weight ones.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 13, 2011
10:50 AM

Post #8308650

Terri,
I am humbled, but glad you're using these ideas.

I've been toying with the idea of using tulle fabric (the lightest weight bridal fabric stuff) as a cover for my tomato plants in the spring. I'm hoping to keep the stinkbugs from laying eggs on the plants. The fabric is sheer enough to let air and light through, but I don't think the weave will allow a full grown stinkbug to land anywhere on the plant to deposit eggs. If it works, we might finally have a weapon against the dreaded Stinkbugs!

Paul,
Close observation of your picture shows what seems to be a metal brace stabilizing the ribs, inside the cover. Please post more on this.

Linda

This message was edited Jan 13, 2011 12:51 PM

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 13, 2011
11:23 AM

Post #8308710

Got the plastic at Farm Tek, they have a good variety of widths. Excellent customer service. You want a heavy plastic 6 or 8 mil, it can be reused for several years.Here's the link http://www.farmtek.com/farm/supplies/home. They have a great printed catalog also.

Yes, I put braces between the hoops. They tend to move sideways. Get the 1/2" galvanized bars at Lowes or Home Depot in the fence dept.. Very inexpensive.

Michigan State University has a great hoophouse program to help farmers in cold climates harvest year round.
I visited a hoop house trial at MSU a couple of years ago. It was 5 degrees outside with a 20 mph wind. Walked into the H.H. and this is what I saw, lush greens. Temp inside was in the 20's, no heat whatsoever. Picked the lettuce and ate it right on the spot.
I've been experimenting and through trial and error have a pretty good setup I just scaled down what I saw at MSU..

This message was edited Jan 13, 2011 3:24 PM

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HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 14, 2011
8:55 AM

Post #8310236

The USDA is promoting the use of high tunnels

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c288LyqQf_w

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 14, 2011
9:58 AM

Post #8310338

Great video.
HelenVT
Charlotte, VT

January 21, 2011
7:15 PM

Post #8323382

That was a good video. I tried making one over raspberries last fall with little success. Now I know how to build it better. I live in Vermont where it can get to 20 below. It doesn't seem like it could be used throughout the whole winter here. If I made one in the fall could I plant vegetables in it in March?

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 28, 2011
9:12 AM

Post #8335077

I finally decided to buy hoop loops and Agribon row covers to protect my seedlings from birds - placed an order today from Drip Works:

http://www.dripworksusa.com/store/agribon.php

I only need something to give the seedlings a good start, and am hoping this set-up will do that for me.
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 28, 2011
11:22 AM

Post #8335277

LOL! I was just looking at that e-mail! Still can't make up my mind between the PVC and now those. Hope you enjoy them and let us know how they work out!
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 28, 2011
12:14 PM

Post #8335303

Ya'll could save a little money on those "hoop loops" by buying #9 wire at your local Home Despot or Lowe's. Although they wouldn't have the string loops already built in it isn't that much trouble to wrap the string around each hoop twice for smaller garden beds like most folks have.

The wire comes in various sized rolls and you can cut the lengths whatever size you want to fit your beds as well as determine the height of the hoops.

Shoe (the miser!)

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 28, 2011
12:42 PM

Post #8335341

UBERShoe, the fantastic, frugal farmer!

I was just waiting for someone to come along and recommend buying and looping your own wire for a lot less $$...I shoulda' KNOWED who it would be!

And, glad to know it's #9 wire I should get...

^^_^^

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 28, 2011
1:08 PM

Post #8335376

Horseshoe - I had considered buying wire, as you suggested, but then I would have to cut it, which means I would have to purchase a wire cutter. Then I would be concerned about the wire hurting my hands, so I would have to purchase gloves to protect them. I would also have to figure out how to cut the wire to uniform lengths...

I could go on, but as you can tell, I really did consider your suggestion.

For $23.10 plus shipping the hoops will arrive on my doorstep ready to use.

terri_emory - Yes, I'll let you know how it works out.
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 28, 2011
2:13 PM

Post #8335524

I hear ya, Honeybee. Sometimes it's best to let others do the work for you so you can get on with other things; I know I do that sometimes. By the way, I never saw how big those hoop loops are on the link you gave. Was there more info someplace and I just didn't see it?

Shoe (waving at Linda the Texas Miser)




Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

January 28, 2011
2:26 PM

Post #8335562

The loops are there. Use your magnifiers...
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 28, 2011
3:41 PM

Post #8335721

Heheheh, use my magnifiers? Which ones, I have several!

Actually I saw the hoops (had to scroll over cus I keep my print so large) but I can't tell their measurements. Thought if they gave some specs I could cut some to those dimensions.

Shoe (off to stir his pascetti sauce)

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 29, 2011
5:11 AM

Post #8336415

Johnnys seeds has a bender in their new catalog.
It bends "top rail" pipe used on chain link fences.
You can bend into either a high or low tunnel.

It looks like a great idea.

Paul
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 29, 2011
8:01 AM

Post #8336692

Mornin', Paul...

I've been looking at those, too. There is another site that has them a little cheaper I think, selling different size benders.
http://www.lostcreek.net/rowcoverbenders3999.html

Shoe

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 29, 2011
10:16 AM

Post #8336894

Horseshoe - I had to Google "Hoop Loops" to find the size from another web site. If I remember correctly, the width at the a base is 16" and the height at the apex is 23"

I chose Drip Works because they offered the best price of the sites I visited.

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

January 29, 2011
1:09 PM

Post #8337202

Shoe
I used 1" PVC for mine and that worked fine, even with a heavy snow load.
I think the fence rail might work a little better for high tunnels.
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 29, 2011
3:34 PM

Post #8337427

Thanks, Honeybee. That's a good size hoop, perfect for young transplants as well as a wide row of mesclun/lettuces/etc. Much obliged.

Thanks Paul. I have that one-inch pvc over my boxed beds and it works perfectly. And I agree, fence rail is the way to go for the high tunnels.

shoe

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 30, 2011
9:23 AM

Post #8338622

Horseshoe - I plan to start my peas under the hoops to keep the birds from eating the young shoots. We haven't had home-grown peas for the past two seasons! The first year we had a great crop, but it was also our first year in our home here in Charlotte, and birds had not started to call our place their "home"

I love birds! Even the dog has learned not to chase them away.
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 30, 2011
1:28 PM

Post #8338959

I LOVE home-grown peas! I broadcast a bed like most people sow grass seed! I just wish I'd learn to grow so many I have to freeze some but unfortunately we eat them all, or friends come by to hang out in the pea patch.

Perfect use for those hoops. What kind of peas are you sowing this year?

Shoe

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 30, 2011
1:49 PM

Post #8339015

Horsehoe - Wando and Burpeena Early - two unopened 2010 packages of each. I'm thinking/hoping the same about the hoops.

I also have a -package of Sugar Snap. The birds only left me one vine last year, so I'm not sure I'll sow them again - there's no way I can protect the 6' vines!

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

January 30, 2011
5:00 PM

Post #8339394

HB,

I've been growing Sugar Snap or Super Sugar Snap for the past 3 years. I only have to protect the tiny seedlings. Once they get a little bigger, growing up a piece of 4-foot fence, I keep birds away from the plants with a plastic owl. I move it from fence post to fence post every day so the birds don't get used to it being in the same place all the time.

David
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 30, 2011
6:23 PM

Post #8339538

Good going' Honeybee, those Wando peas will handle an early heat better than most peas will. You could even successive sow that variety.

Birds don't seem to mess with my peas much. I wonder if rabbits are getting your pea seedlings. Course now, crows are notorious for pulling up seedlings, too.

Shoe
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 31, 2011
6:40 AM

Post #8340284

Shoe, often I will purchase something and figure out how they made it. And then improvise and make more myself. I may just buy the wire hoops and then get some PVC and make more hoops from that. That way I can see what works best for me. I usually use cattle panels. Those are easy to bend long wise, but not so easy to ben height wise--if you see what I mean.

I have the crow problem right now myself. So I think hoops and row cover will be a good thing.

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

January 31, 2011
7:47 AM

Post #8340405

Shoe - I'm positive it's birds, not rabbits eating the peas. I've actually seen cardinals pecking at them! They like the tendrils best, but also peck off the ends of the actual pods. If the peas manage to set the pods, at least we only lose the ends.

I haven't seen crows in the garden, and I think I woul know if they were there 'cause those birds can't ever be quiet!

David - I have thought about trying to protect the Sugar Snap peas, but can't figure out how to cover the seeds. The poles and twine I have for them to grow on are in the way of any protection I could provide.

Are there any dwarf varieties of Sugar Snaps? I should check on that for next year.
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

January 31, 2011
9:49 AM

Post #8340633

Birds know a good thing to eat, don't they Honeybee! I have a pea variety that is grown strictly for the tendrils and shoots; I'll have to check my seed larder to see if the name is on them. I think it was something Oriental.

I would think you could drape remay/row cover over your peas. Maybe that would keep the birds away.

Terri, I use cattle panels, too, but keep them as is attached to T-posts in the garden and grow beans and/or tomatoes up them. Sure makes it easy to put up a trellis that way.

Shoe
HelenVT
Charlotte, VT

February 3, 2011
9:00 AM

Post #8346671

I like easy trellises. What are cattle panels? We have mostly dairy cows up here. Where do you get them?
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 3, 2011
9:05 AM

Post #8346675

Check at your local farm supply store or farmer's co-op. Tractor Supply has them, too. They can come in different sizes and I've found our farmer's co-op has the best sellection around here.

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

February 3, 2011
3:11 PM

Post #8351791

Helen,

A cattle panel is a pre-fabricated portion of heavy fencing. It is usually made from 1/4 (or so) rods welded together and galvanized. It is flexible enough that an arch can be made from a full 16 or 20-foot length, but stiff enough and heavy enough to be a very strong trellis (or greenhouse structure).

Here's a link to a picture of a cattle panel: http://assets.farmandfleet.com/uploads/blaincat/product/22/full/226550.jpg

David

This message was edited Feb 3, 2011 5:12 PM

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

February 3, 2011
6:13 PM

Post #8352233

What do the usually cost? I'm thinking of a couple of uses for them.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 3, 2011
6:48 PM

Post #8352299

We paid from $14 to $16 for them. They fluctuate with the metal prices.

HelenVT ~ this is a cattle panel that was arched for a bean trellis. On the left is a normal cattle panel used as a horizontal trellis.

Scanned photo so not as clear.

Thumbnail by podster
Click the image for an enlarged view.

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

February 4, 2011
4:52 AM

Post #8352650

Thanks

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 4, 2011
8:31 AM

Post #8353068

podster - Do you think a similar arbor would be good to grow charentais melons or cucumbers on? Make them easier to pick I should imagine.

Your photo looked great.
Moodene
(Nadine) Devers, TX
(Zone 9b)

February 4, 2011
12:10 PM

Post #8353531

My dad gave me a roll of 6 or 10 gauge concrete wire that he found in his garage..He says: I quote the same words as he says..LOL.. We are using that for the beans I am growing here--which means..he is gowing his speckled lima beans on it. here at my place...we both love speckle lima beans..lol..making arches and be able to sit under it and drink our coffee..I thought..mmm..I have benches made from pine logs so why not!..lol..
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 4, 2011
1:55 PM

Post #8353726

Yup, that is one cool cattle panel trellis/arch, podster! Thanks for the photo.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 4, 2011
7:30 PM

Post #8354395

[quote="HoneybeeNC"]podster - Do you think a similar arbor would be good to grow charentais melons or cucumbers on? Make them easier to pick I should imagine.

[/quote]

This arch was tall enough to walk under and they said worked well with beans.
This will be my first year growing Savor ~ Charentais so I don't know how long the vines will grow.
I would think you would definitely have to bag the melons on this arch.
I know some of the small cucumber vines wouldn't travel far enough to cover, some would probably do fine.

I would think a cattle panel staked at a 45 angle would be good to grow some of the vines with larger fruits maybe?

paulgrow

paulgrow
Allen Park, MI
(Zone 6a)

February 5, 2011
4:19 AM

Post #8354789

I use that concrete reinforcing wire to make my tomato cages.
Paul

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 5, 2011
11:06 AM

Post #8355468

podster - the Charentais melons weigh about 2lbs each. I've grown them on "pea fences", but they are not tall enough.

Keep us posted as to how well these cattle panels work out for you.

Thumbnail by HoneybeeNC
Click the image for an enlarged view.

podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 5, 2011
6:27 PM

Post #8356250

So the vines are really long on the Charentais melon? How tall do you suggest the trellis needs to be?

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 6, 2011
6:37 AM

Post #8356854

podster - I haven't actually measured the vines, and am not good at guessing - but I'd say the vines stretch about 5 feet.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 6, 2011
7:19 AM

Post #8356948

I was curious as to the length of vines because the cattle panel length is 14 feet long. That would give you an idea how tall an arch it would be.
The lady that owns the one in the photo I posted says her husband who is over 6 feet tall can walk upright thru the tunnel and pick beans over head. I suspect your melon vines wouldn't cover it.

Perhaps you could companion plant with other vines?

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 6, 2011
7:26 AM

Post #8356968

podster - [quote]Perhaps you could companion plant with other vines?[/quote]

I think cucumbers would grow well on this set-up, too.

I won't be trying the cattle panels this year. I lost my part-time job in September so cash is a little tight right now :(

I'm so glad we have a vegetable garden - at least we have no worries about having enough to eat!
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 6, 2011
7:39 AM

Post #8356996

Absolutely on the garden as well as eating far better foods. And the "up" side is you have more time to garden!
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

February 6, 2011
7:41 AM

Post #8357000

I've grown watermelon on trellis/fences before, the bigger ones I had to support with a sling. However, this past year I grew cheese pumpkin on a fence/trellis along with pole beans and it worked great.

I'm sure your cukes would grow on a fence/trellis just fine, Honeybee, and your melons, too. Maybe next year you can try a cattle panel. Fencing is fairly cheap though and will get you going this year.

Shoe

Thumbnail by Horseshoe
Click the image for an enlarged view.

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 6, 2011
7:58 AM

Post #8357041

podster - the idea of having more time to garden is the best part of being unemployed! I figure I can raise fewer of each vegetable and get the same yield just by being home and giving the garden 7-day-a-week attention, rather than the two-day-a-week on the weekends it has been receiving the past three years.

Shoe - those pumpkins probably did much better being raised up like that. Is that Powdery Mildew I see in the photo? I know how susceptible the squash family can be to it :(

I've thought of growing climbers along our fence line - but am afraid it would invite deer to jump into the garden! I have a friend who lives several miles from here, and she planted tomatoes along her fence, and that's exactly what the deer did.
HelenVT
Charlotte, VT

February 6, 2011
10:45 AM

Post #8357312

These panels are a great idea. In the past I used chicken wire. What a mess it was every year to unroll it in the spring and roll it back up in the fall. I gave up growing pole beans and peas because of the hassle. Thanks for a great idea. I'm excited because a Tractor Supply store is being built in the town next door!
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 6, 2011
10:58 AM

Post #8357336

Ahhh TSC... I am almost embarassed to admit Tractor Supply is my favorite store. You will enjoy it!
Horseshoe
Efland, NC
(Zone 7a)

February 6, 2011
3:43 PM

Post #8357757

Honeybee, nope, not P-mildew, those ugly leaves are from a hard drought this past summer and also possibly from squash bugs poking their little noses on them! I don't seem to get PM very much, notice how the other leaves are nice and green? At my other garden north of town we got about 5 or 6 more pumpkins/squash off 3 plants, not too bad considering no irrigation.

Deer love tomatoes (and so do dang squirrels!) but I haven't had them mess with squash and such. Heck, it might even keep them out of your garden.

Shoe

TX_gardener
Brady, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 7, 2011
3:19 AM

Post #8358391

Podster, no need to be embarrassed! TSC is my favorite, too. Wish ours were more garden oriented, but it'd just cost me more $$$...
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 7, 2011
5:36 AM

Post #8358563

Yes, I have wished that also. But then I would be doomed!
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 7, 2011
7:48 AM

Post #8358912

When we lived up north, DH used to take me on date-night to the Farm and Fleet. I could spend hours in there. TSC is my second favorite--they don't have Farm and Fleets down here =(.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 7, 2011
9:52 AM

Post #8359146

I love it ~ date night! How well matched is that!?!! I have been to Farm & Fleet when visiting my Mom. It is a cool store too. They have plants and critters for sale as well at the time of year I've been there.
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 8, 2011
9:45 AM

Post #8360867

Yes, I've said it before...I probably should get out more =P!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 22, 2011
6:13 AM

Post #8385990

Here's a photo taken this morning, Feb 22nd 2011 showing the hoop loops covering the pea beds. I used clothes pins to hold down the floating row covers.

Thumbnail by HoneybeeNC
Click the image for an enlarged view.

terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 22, 2011
6:27 AM

Post #8386028

Can we now fire the starter pistol for the spring races? Huh, huh =P!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 22, 2011
6:33 AM

Post #8386083

terri_emory - I'm using 2010 pea seeds, so am not going to fire that pistol just yet. LOL
WormsLovSharon
Las Vegas, NV

February 22, 2011
6:15 PM

Post #8387259

Well I have been lurking. I am so thankful I found your thread.

I have for many years planted with my square burpee tomato cages and wrapped each cage. This was very time consuming and limited amount of greens I could grow. I have to get a head start because of our heat.

I have had workers on site for many days and today we got to the vegetable bed on the east side Northeast side of our home. Our lot is 150' deep x 125' wide. I had raised bed built in on each side. The other side is used as a holding garden and herbs.

My workers did not understand what I wanted them to do with the 3/4" PVC and the 2' rebar. I took my laptop out to the raised bed and showed them your photos. They got it right away.

The photo is the bed, after it was double dug, twice, and then the hoops were installed. They PVC is 10' long but I wanted them tall. The bed is 3 1/2' wide. They cannot be seen over the fence or from the front or back landscape park. I am not going to do a continuous cover. I am going to cover about every three hoops which should cover 4 tomato cages. When I get them covered I will take another photo.

A cold spell is coming in Sunday and our high will be 47. So I am going to get it planted and covered before Sunday. I am going to lay down some black plastic garbage bags tomorrow to try and heat up the soil.

Again, thanks for all the great and helpful ideas. Sharon

Thumbnail by WormsLovSharon
Click the image for an enlarged view.

terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 23, 2011
6:51 AM

Post #8387970

That is sweet! Sort of half low tunnel and half hight tunnel!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

February 23, 2011
7:37 AM

Post #8388068

Sharon - that's a wonderful set-up for tomatoes. I look forward to another photo when they are covered.

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