Cool weather crops under cover #130455 - Ask Extension


Cool weather crops under cover #130455

Asked May 29, 2013, 1:10 AM EDT

Can cool-weather crops such as beets, leaf lettuce or onions grow well under cover in summer? I'm referring to a tunnel garden with closable ends. Should I plant these outside the cover or wait for fall planting under cover?

Yamhill County Oregon

Expert Response

Thank you for your question to Ask the Expert-

If you plant cool season crops in a cold frame during the summer, the plants will likely bolt quickly and you will not get good quality produce. If you remove the plastic and use shade cloth over your structure, then you could likely grow these crops during the summer.  At this point in the season, you might also plan to plant overwintering varieties of onions and cole crops in the open.  Also, you could plant cool season crops later in the season (August-early September) under your cover.  They will likely over winter well.  Make sure that your cold frame can be easily vented.  It is better to keep them too cool rather than too hot because you can damage plants very quickly in an unvented cold frame.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Weston Miller Replied May 30, 2013, 12:53 PM EDT

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