I’ve been talking a lot about gardens lately. I know, I’m sorry. It’s just that it’s that time of year and I am super pumped. I’ve spent the last few months doing tons of research to save space and increase my crops and so on and so forth to prepare for the season, and I feel that you need to know about all my research and doings. With that off my hairy chest, I thought I’d show you my hoop house that will keep my seedlings warm.
My Hoop House Lets Me Transplant While it’s Still Cold
If you remember, I started a bunch of cold weather crops last month. Now they’re ready to be transplanted out into the garden bed. But – it’s still a little cold and we recently had some pretty heavy frosts (I know some of you up north would love to be dealing only with frost) – so it’s a good thing I planned for this eventuality. Therefore, ergo, vis-a-vis… I have no idea what I am saying. Anyway, I built a hoop house, which is a little different from tradition (mainly due to the resources I decided to use). Typical hoop houses have multiple arches that support the plastic covering, and may be tied together with a center pipe for support. However, what I had on hand in the way of supplies were four short pieces of 3/4″ PVC, a four-way connector, and some plastic. Being the frugal guy that I am, that’s everything that went into my hoop house plans.
Plan A Goes To Plan B
Initially, I thought I could create a sort of domed structure that could span all four corners. However, the ends creased because of the pressure during bending. Therefore, plan B came into action: scrounge, scrounge, scrounge. You know, when I was younger, I always told myself that I would do things the right way all the time and buy whatever necessities were needed for the perfect job. But more often than not, now that I have two kids and a pile of work, sometimes making do with what I have is the best I can hope for. I guess my dad makes a lot more sense now than before… But enough of memory lane here. I decided to keep the pipes bent, using the four-way as a simple coupling for the front arch. For the back arch I used a short piece of 1/2″ pipe inside and 1 1/4″ pipe piece to ‘lock’ the pipes in. In retrospect, a little T-rex tape or Gorilla Tape would have worked perfectly here.
With the frame, if you wanna call it that, in place, I unfolded the plastic and stretched it over the arches. Now for the hard part. I took some slats I had cut earlier to make trellises, rolled the slats into the plastic, and screwed them to the garden box. That’s it. I suppose it’s really not that hard.
Venting the Hoop House on Warm Days is Easy
On warmer days I can vent the hoop house by simply removing a few screws. Now I have an early jump on the planting season – with onions and more thriving under their cover until it’s warm enough to take the hoop house off for good.