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News and Notes
from the Field

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January 8, 2017
It's Winter
Notes From The Field
By Derek McGeehan
And it's cold! At 7:30am Monday morning it was 2 degrees outside, 10 degrees inside the high tunnel, 25 degrees under the two layers of inner row cover in the high tunnel, and 30 degrees in the greenhouse, thanks to some subtle propane heat. This was our 3rd single digit morning this fall/winter and probably won't be our last. By 3:00pm Monday afternoon it warmed up to a balmy 23 degrees outside, 42 degrees inside the high tunnel, 46 degrees under the two inner covers, and was 47 degrees in the greenhouse. Fortunately, miraculously, marvelously all of the unheated greens survived and looked happily content by this afternoon. Quite a rebound since this morning, but they were only exposed to 25 degrees or so, which is tolerable, apparently. It's pretty amazing that the simple addition of inner covers protects crops this much, all passively without added heat. This cold arrived on the back of a warm spell, so the leftover warmth of the soil is probably getting trapped under the covers. Twenty-five is low, especially for relatively mature greens that need to be harvested soon. These greens began their lives at the end of October and should be around for a second cutting at the end of February. After we're through with the first cutting in the high tunnel we'll begin cutting in the greenhouse and around then we'll also take a second cutting from the lettuce mix, spinach, and chard in the hoop house. These are our goals anyway. Please enjoy these nurtured organic greens!
Covering and uncovering the protected crops are typical winter growing tasks
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