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Topic: Gardening in the Dead of Winter  (Read 9234 times)
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MissingWillow
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« on: January 28, 2012 07:38:09 AM »

Hey everyone, I thought I'd share what we've learned about greenhouse gardening over the past few years.  It's the end of January, 26 degrees out and this is today's harvest(!)  Hot peppers, baby carrots and golden beets, a huge radish.  At dinnertime tonight I'll also pick spinach, lettuce and mesclun for a salad.  The hot peppers are going in the dehydrator this afternoon.  The peppers are in pots that we moved from our back deck when the weather turned cold.  Everything else is growing in indoor raised beds. 


Two years ago we were trying to keep the indoor temp high enough to sustain potted summer vegetables, tropicals and herbs.  A power failure on a sub zero night killed everything, including my precious saffron.   Sad  Last year my husband put in an indoor raised bed and we didn't use the heater at all.  We enjoyed lettuce all Winter. This year, he added 3 more indoor raised beds and we have the heater set just at freezing.  It rarely comes on and we've got some beautiful things growing in there!


I'm hoping we'll have peas to harvest in a week or two.


Red and gold beets.


An entire bed of potatoes.  When they flower we'll know there are harvestable potatoes inside.


We've even got a few limes growing, despite the cool temps.  Our citrus lives in pots. 


We use a few black rain barrels to hold water, and water the beds by hand.  They also help keep the interior warm by acting as a thermal mass. 


Here's the exterior.  We keep the shadecloth on year round and close it up during the Summer.  It's too hot in there to be of any use.  My husband built it from a kit (he's a genius).  Any questions, just let me know.   Smiley


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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2012 07:43:33 AM »

I'm trying to control my jealousy over all the fresh salads you must be enjoying. Everything looks so delicious!
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2012 08:07:14 AM »

That is impressive...and you're well on your way to self-sustainability! Cheesy 
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MissingWillow
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2012 08:11:20 AM »

Thanks you guys!  We're working on it...
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2012 08:22:57 AM »

Super jealous! Wink

I've always wondered about red and gold beets. Is there any taste difference between the two?
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2012 08:25:25 AM »

How lovely is your garden.  Smiley 
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MissingWillow
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2012 08:28:44 AM »

Thanks!  In our experience the golden beets are slightly sweeter, TroubleT.
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missmlissa
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2012 08:36:08 AM »

So... unbelievably... jealous. 
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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2012 09:19:32 AM »

Just beautiful, MW!! Everything looks so bright and delicious.
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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2012 09:57:53 AM »

Wow! I'm impressed! Do you have to provide any extra lighting? And, are the raised beds in contact with the ground, or elevated? I don't have the right yard for this (I live in a city and the neighbor's house is only 10 feet away... not much sunlight available, even in the summer), but I think I'll share the idea with my sister. She loves to garden and would totally love a winter greenhouse!
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