Continuing where we left off last time, let’s discuss the best ways to grow winter vegetables. The key to winter growing is to protect your plants from the elements of wind, cold and snow. For the beginner, I would start with one of three easy and inexpensive styles: indoor container garden, outdoor gardening using cloches and/or natural protection, or the use of a simple cold frame. If you plan to grow outdoors, look for areas against a south facing wall in order to protect your sensitive plants and to ensure the plants receive sufficient sun. Other methods would be indoor growing using grow lamps or outdoors using a green house. Pros and cons of each method are noted below:
Outdoor Garden Using Cloches: A cloche is “like” a portable greenhouse, an individual clear plastic covering over each plant. Examples of a cloche would be the bottom of a 2 liter soda bottle or a strip of plastic tarp staked over the plant.
Outdoor Garden Using a Cold Frame: A cold frame is a transparent, enclosed box used to protect sensitive plants from the elements, particularly cold, wet and wind. Cold frames are easy to construct, and there are many designs that can be found on the internet.
Indoor Container Gardening: I enjoy creating an indoor container garden in the winter. We are blessed to have large, east facing windows that get plenty of morning sun. I use wooden planter boxes, floor planters, wall planters and hanging planters to grow a cornucopia of fresh produce.
In our next installment, we will further discuss the types of planters and how we go about growing winter vegetables.
I’d love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below and let us know your plan for growing winter vegetables.