The Q&A Archives: Floating Row Covers

Question: One of my reminders for this month was to install floating row covers...what are they?

Answer: Floating row covers are made of spun polyester-type fabric. If you install floating row covers over your planting beds immediately after sowing seeds or transplanting tender annuals, you'll keep pesky insects away. Row covers allow air, moisture and sunlight to reach your plants but they are an effective barrier to both crawling and flying insects. I usually plant my vegetable seeds then place hoops of wire (actually bent coathangers!) at 3'-4' intervals along the rows of veggies. Then I drape row cover fabric over the hoops (to keep the fabric from making contact with the tops of the plants). I secure the row cover to the ground with staple-type anchors made of bent coathangers. Once in place, the floating row covers make a snug little home for my newly emerging seedlings. Once the plants reach about 8" in height and are mature enough to tolerate some insect damage on their leaves, I remove the row covers. Hope this answers your question!

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