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Autumn / Winter growing in polytunnel


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galwaybeginner
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Joined: 05 Mar 2009
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Location: Galway, Ireland

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 12:18 pm    Post subject: Autumn / Winter growing in polytunnel Reply with quote

Hi all,

After about 5 months of digging, preparing, getting distracted (even got married halfway through!), erecting, covering....I have FINALLY got my polytunnel up and covered.

I've just a couple of bits of trimming to do over the next couple of days and it's good to go.

I'm wondering if anyone could tell me what I can grow during the winter - ideally from seed as I have a box full of seed packets I bought in Spring thinking I'd be planting months ago.

All the seed packs dates are for outside growing and I am wondering what I can grow now under plastic? I've 8' * 15' and would love to fill it.

Many thanks


P.S. Here is the (almost) finished tunnel.



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Foxylock
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Joined: 08 Aug 2009
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Location: cork

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi galwaybeginner.

Thats an impressive looking polytunnel, how much did it cost to build. As regards planting , most salad crops are winter hardy when protected in a polytunnel. And you can experiment with most things to see what will grow, worse case scenario you have a great place to escape from the new spouse Laughing Best of luck with it.

Make sure the wind doesn't get under that plastic or the neighbours will be enjoying the fruits of your labours !! Laughing
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sal
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wow ,thats impressive,i`m looking to buy one for my son but wouldn`t like to tackle making one myself,well done you
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sal wrote:
wow ,thats impressive,i`m looking to buy one for my son but wouldn`t like to tackle making one myself,well done you


I bought it, but had to erect it myself. First I dug down 18 inches and layered wire mesh (to keep out rats and rabbits), paper (weeds), manure, loam, manure, loam, compost, manure....so I can grow deep for a few years without worry. And a fair bit of work in the construction too.

Anyhow....anyone any advice on the seeds question?
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

galwaybeginner, have a look here............ What veg could I plant now (end Sept)

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Last edited by James Kilkelly on Mon Mar 01, 2010 6:53 pm; edited 1 time in total
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks James.

Is there anything other than onions/carrots/peas/garlic?
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kale for baby leaves possibly, or Oriental greens.

Winter lettuce is another, as is Endive

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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ok, thanks.

Somehow I'd pictured myself growing colis and broccoli and a whole plateful of veg. Still, all thpose together will be cool enough.

Appreciate the advice. Thanks.
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right, I bit the bullet and planted some seeds at the weekend. I put down :
Lettuce (winter crop)
Cauliflower (vroege mechelse)
Onions (Dorata de Parma)
Onions (Sturon)
Spinach (Giant Winter)
Carrots (Nantes)
Carrots (Amfine - forcing type)
and also
Spring onions (ramrod)
Parsley (french)
Chives
Coriander

So far two lettuce and a cauli have poped above ground in the propogator.

First time using a propogator so hoping I don't mess it up, but so far so good!
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murfinthecountry
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2009 5:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Galway, Like you I have just erected a polytunnel and I am in the process of getting the soil sorted out. Your list of seeds is impressive and I will probably copy you. Please keep us informed of your progress and I will do likewise.
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Will do Murfinthecountry. Not sure if they will all survive, but without trying I'll never find out!
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, so far...garlic growing brilliantly.

Nothign else doing too amazingly so far.

Cauliflowers are touch and go. Will know in a few weeks. At the moment they are sitting there depressed on the soil.

Sping onions doing fine. Slow growth but thats to be expected at this time of year I guess.

A lot of the carrots got dried but that was my own fault. Those that survived the drought (abotu 3 or 4 out of 10) seem to be doing well. Beginning to grow their distinctive carrot leaves.
A fair few of the others died off shortly after planting out, but I would say this is mostly down to my own lack of experience than any problem with time of year etc.
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michael brenock
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i hope that you will not be disappointed with your crops. Your onions should do alright and provided they were overwinter variety they will not bolt in the Spring. carrots are biennials and may bolt early next year and this is normal for them because they are now in shortening day-length. The cauliflowers, if they were a winter variety you will probably be alright but if it is a long day (Summer) variety then they might bolt also. i dont send this message to discourage you but to explain to you why plants behave in strange ways and some things are predictable. Take note of the varieties and dates of sowing and if successful you have learned something valuable.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)
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galwaybeginner
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 06, 2009 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Michael. Yes, I tried to use all Winter varieties.

One thing I don't understand - what does 'forcing type' mean on a seed pack?
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nemo
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2009 8:20 pm    Post subject: forcing Reply with quote

for me forcing something is growing it in different way we force rhubarb and get an early crop. we put a large dark container over the rhubarb crown and put a heavy weight on the container to stop the wind blowing it over.we use black plastic rubbish bins to force the rhubarb . after a few months we harvest pink rhubarb sticks these are skinnier than regular rhubarb.the rhubarb crowns must be kept in total darkness during forcing.we harvest our first sticks usually in march.i live right by the sea so we rarely get hard frost or snow low temperatures will slow down the rhubarb. sea kale and chicory can also be forced.this is how we do it but my method mightn't be totally correct others might do it differently
regards
nemo
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