Our old friend Eliot Coleman is responsible for this. We moved to new land last year in Tennessee and began to farm as we've done before -- starting off slow with 1/4 acre. The first year we fed the soil and planted little. This year we set up the farmstand again and planted much, netting about $7,000 off this little market garden (I have a day job). Last Saturday, with the season ebbing, we closed the stand.
We didn't want to, and our customers didn't want us to, but the land and weather said we must.
Janet said it was time for cold frames, that Sunday morning, and then I remembered all the old cedar fence rails I have access to for free, and I remember Eliot's winter hoop houses in Maine, and sat up in bed and said, "No cold frames; let's do a winter greenhouse." And so we did. The 10-foot posts would be perfect for a 10-by-40 foot poly-covered house to start. I sank the rails as posts, 10 feet apart on the sides, and 5 feet apart on the ends, with the center post 8 feet high, and side ones only 6. It made a nice gable-end frame. With the frame and rafters well fastened together, I ordered the poly covering and a roll of greenhouse tape.
Total cost: $80 for the poly, and $10 for the tape.
The poly comes tomorrow, and I'll put it up while Janet's off in Boulder, CO with the grandkids.
I've ordered winter seed from Johnny's, it's due soon, and we'll keep you posted. We have a heated greenhouse also for seed-starting, so at the very least I hope to get the farmstand up earlier than ever with root crops and greens, maybe brassicas.
I love to push the envelope and try a little insanity now and then.
Posted by Peter
@ 03:57 PM CST