The Dirt Diva

Tailoring your garden to your needs!

A Greenhouse of our own


Ever since I read Eliot Coleman’s Four Season Harvest I have been obsessed with having a cold frame for growing greens during our long northeast winters. (A cold frame is an unheated hoop house, relying solely on il sole for warmth). If he can have salad greens in January in northern Maine, I can here in the Catskills! This year the dream became a reality. Our neighbor gave us her old parking shed, which we used as the basis of our design. That meant all we had to buy was lumber to frame the end walls,new plastic sheeting and some fasteners in order to have a structure for growing! The location we chose was fairly level, but it had to be cleared of brush, stumps and scrubby trees first.

I invested in a dump truck load of composted cow manure (thank god for the farmers!), which would become the growing medium for the raised beds. On Sept 18 I seeded spinach, kale, broccoli raab, lettuce, arugula, radish, and a cold hardy green called mache, and transplanted some basil and parsley plants from the garden. Now everything is sprouting and safe from the fall frosts, the arugula is even close to harvest! Already this little plastic tunnel is proving to be a good investment of time and money. And when the winter blues set in in January, I know I can seek a little earthy- smelling oasis inside it, to remind myself that spring will return soon!

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.