Planning to understand how to use a greenhouse in winter? Well, it can be achieved through accurate planning, choosing the right crops, environment control, and efficient harvesting.
Greenhouse growers have proven techniques on how to sustain healthy produce despite the climate. Indeed, these changing seasons are a great challenge to all growers, especially in agricultural crop production through the years.
Those who are located in northern climates, where daylight is low and extremely cold weather with heavy snowfalls suffers the most. In this article, let’s delve deeper on how to use a greenhouse in winter.
Greenhouse During Winter
With a greenhouse, they can still provide fresh vegetables and herbs from December to March. Because of its controllable and reliable environment, it became the center of winter gardening.
Some greenhouse owners prefer to build a Deep Winter Greenhouse (DWG) because it is more sustainable and designed perfectly for winter. However, there are also ways to maintain an ordinary greenhouse even in a cold season.
As a result of our research, we made a list of the steps on how to use a greenhouse in winter. Read on and learn how to keep your garden abreast of the changing season.
Steps In Using A Greenhouse During Winter
We gathered the different techniques to consider to stay ahead of your gardening. Maintaining your greenhouse crops in winter is as easy as these five easy steps.
#1 Prepping and planning
At the end of spring, farmers anticipate the changing weather and start their extensive preparations. For greenhouse growers, cleaning up and getting the greenhouse in top shape before the snow falls is highly essential.
Cleaning your greenhouse whether you plan on keeping a winter grow or not should be routine. At this time, when the spring harvest season is over, you must perform deep cleaning.
Spring-cleaning means thoroughly removing any remaining organic materials from your greenhouse. Scrubbing the wall will get rid of molds and other fungi that could cause plant disease. More so, gardening pieces of equipment must be disinfected and greased to preserve and maintain its functionality.
This season is also the perfect time to check the structure of the greenhouse and make all repairs. During the winter season, when the weather is unpredictable, it is an advantage if you have secured its construction. It will ensure reliable protection for your crops when the snow starts to fall.
#2 Choosing the right crop
Crops are highly particular with temperature. Therefore, picking plants that prefer a cold environment is the most ideal during winter. Although a greenhouse can mitigate the situation, growing in the winter season must be done after extensive research and planning.
There is an array of crops to choose from that can be grown through winter in a greenhouse. Leafy greens such as spinach, cabbage, and kale can survive the low temperature. Crops with hardy roots like leeks, beets, carrots, turnips, radishes and the like can also ensure success throughout the winter growing season.
#3 Keeping the greenhouse well lit
Plants require adequate light for photosynthesis to take place. During winter, when light is scarce, many crops start to struggle.
These problems can be managed by planting cold-tolerant crops because they can sustain the growth cycle even with less light. Much more, there are also ways to increase the light that enters the greenhouse.
If you painted your greenhouse to minimize heat entry during summer, it’s time to scrub them off. Also, you can remove the blinds that are installed during these hot days as well. This way, you can fully allow the light to pass through the walls.
#4 Controlling the environment
As the winter season reaches its peak, your greenhouse will require more heat inside. Whether it is mild winter or freezing temperature, the sun might not be able to provide enough heat to keep the crops healthy until spring.
To deal with this situation, an efficient and effective heating system must be installed. This way, you can supply the heat and humidity required for the crops that you are growing.
However, safeguard your greenhouse since certain plant diseases look for a warm place to season. It is essential to balance the humidity and heat inside. This process can be done through proper ventilation or by installing sound dehumidifying systems.
#5 Harvesting efficiently
Now that you have successfully grown your crops despite the freezing temperature, it’s time to harvest. Most first-time winter growers treat winter harvest like spring or summer. This process is an excellent slip-up since winter harvest should be spread out to cover the whole season.
Winter harvesting requires a sharp detail of the schedule. The crops must be harvested when it is needed and should not be picked out at one big harvest time. This way, you can continue to produce fresh crops until spring.
The trick to do this is by planting the crops in beds organized in lines; this way, you can easily pick out crops one-by-one. This process will allow the first harvested rows to regrow and reproduce. It will yield fresh vegetables and herbs in a cycle throughout the winter.
It may seem difficult for first-time winter growers to be productive throughout the traditionally barren cold season. But with smart planning and appropriate equipment, you will be as productive as spring with your greenhouse. Now that you already know how to use a greenhouse in winter, you’re plants are now safe.