In the past, growing most food during the winter was a task thought to be impossible. With the weather turning bad in most places during this season, plants don’t get much of a chance to survive, and will often go into hibernation simply to stay alive. Of course, while this is a natural cycle, it can be a hard one to live with if you’re relying on your garden for food. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the best ways to turn your outdoor space into a year-round homestead.
All-Weather Growing For The Year-Round Homestead
While it isn’t a recent invention, the power of a good greenhouse is often ignored. While protecting your plants from the elements, this sort of structure also enables you to make the most of the sunlight they are exposed to, often making them grow faster and healthier. Buying greenhouse plants and accessories shouldn’t cost too much, and the benefits it can provide make any investment worth it. Of course, though, you’ll have to do some research to make sure that you’re buying the right seeds.
A quick search on the internet can provide many DIY instructions to build your own on your homestead. Or if you are not that handy, greenhouse kits can be purchased at most home and garden centers. A greenhouse will allow you to have a year-round homestead of food for your family.
The Right Nutrients:
During the colder months, it can be hard for growing plants to get the nutrients they need from the ground. Without this element in their life, they won’t be able to get bigger, and this will make it hard for you to get a good harvest. To help with this, loads of companies make special grow bags which are designed to provide everything a small group of plants should need. This will only work if you plan to replant your vegetables each year, as you will need new bags.
Grow bags are similar to a burlap sack. You simply fill them with potting soil and the nutrients necessary for the plant you that you are growing and voila, portable garden. These bags come in many sizes with the biggest being a 20 lb. Many homesteaders and small farms are becoming a year-round homestead by growing many large plants in these sacks. They are used similarly to container gardens would be. But these plant bags have handles so they can be moved once filled.
Some Proper Light:
One of the hardest parts about winter for your plants is the light they don’t get during it. They need this crucial element to be able to produce energy to grow, and the greenhouse you’re using might not be enough if they daylight hours are short in your hometown. To help with this, using some small UV lights for a couple of hours each evening can be a great way to encourage faster growth in your plants. Like the grow bags, though, you will often need to replace these once a year.
These lights can be picked up in any nursery or garden store. Even some major chain stores like Wal-Mart and Target carry these lights. Do your research to find out how much light each plant requires to grow. There are many plants that can be grown in shady conditions indoors and outdoors.
Flooding, frost, and other complications during the process of growing your plants will never be good for them. In a lot of cases, these elements can have a big impact on your vegetables and could ruin your harvests time and time again. If it is likely for anything like this to strike, it will be important to take action long before it is a problem. To help you with this, there are loads of blog posts out there which explore different ways to secure a greenhouse, even if it is from simple theft.
Keeping the heat inside the greenhouse is easy with the placement of small heaters as needed. Another aspect of the greenhouse you need to consider is water. Many YouTube videos explain how to set up a drip irrigation within the greenhouse to help keep up with the watering needs. Lastly, make sure you keep up with the maintenance of the greenhouse itself. Repairs done immediately can save you from a major plant loss and even a loss of money in the future.
Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start working harder on the plants that you grow for your homestead. It can be a challenge to make the most of the space you have all year round, and a lot of people give up when winter comes. It doesn’t have to be this way, though, and you only have to do a little bit of work to make a difference. Installing a simple greenhouse correctly can allow you to become a year-round homestead that provides food for your family throughout the coldest months of winter.
Do you have a greenhouse to grow food throughout the winter on your homestead? Tell me about it in the comments below.