Avatar for liquidmonkey
Apr 18, 2018 5:54 AM CST
Thread OP
örebro, sweden
Not sure if a hoop tunnel is a greenhouse but hopefully you let this thread live here :)

After having a terrible year in 2017, i've decided to go with a hoop tunnel. I live in the middle of Sweden, a little bit in the hills so we have a different climate zone which is generally 5 degrees cool than in the nearby city.
After watching many youtube vids i'm all good to try it out but have a few questions:

1) i'll cover the hoops with a fiber cloth which says it lets in 90% of the sunlight but realistically, how much temperature increase can i expect? There is a bit of shade where the hoop tunnel will be, perhaps 30% of the time the sun shines.
2) would clear plastic be better? whats really the difference here between the clear plastic and fiber cloth?
3) i use drip hoses for watering so having rain water fall on the garden is not crucial. will condensation be an issue?

i like to grow a variety of vegetables, carrots, peas, radishes, lettuce, potatoes and tomatoes.
i also have loads of raspberries, strawberries and blueberries.

4) will it help the fruits along to loosely cover them with the fiber cloth?

thanks for any help Smiling
Apr 19, 2018 3:18 AM CST
Name: Jim
Northeast Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Gardens feed my body, soul & spirit
Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Fruit Growers Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Region: Pennsylvania
Hi @liquidmonkey and welcome to the NGA forum. I have to admit, I'm not real familiar with growing under hoop tunnels (low tunnels), but I did find a couple of articles written by an author who seems to have a good amount of experience with plastic vs. fiber cloth. Perhaps these will be helpful.

My PA Food Forest Thread at NGA
“The one who plants trees, knowing that he will never sit in their shade, has at least started to understand the meaning of life.” (Rabindranath Tagore)
Apr 20, 2018 8:45 PM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River Twp, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Bee Lover Butterflies Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Welcome to NGA, @Liquidmonkey !

I have what is probably a fairly similar climate to yours and have used both low tunnels and a high tunnel for growing and extending the seasons. For tomatoes, using clear plastic works great because they seem to love the heat. Otherwise, using the "fiber cloth" does a great job in retaining some warmth and letting in the sun and also water. And keeping out bugs -- such as cabbage butterflies -- as an added benefit. For the last couple of years I've grown my tomatoes in a high tunnel covered with clear plastic and have had almost no disease on my plants, unlike the ones grown out in the open garden. I did have issues with aphids attacking pepper plants in the same high tunnel, and ditto for spider mites on eggplant plants. I've used the fiber cloth/floating row cover over some of my asparagus, with the result of having an earlier harvest. And one year I used a low tunnel covered with plastic to plant some onion sets in the late summer -- without considering the fact that they wouldn't bulb up with the shortening days -- and, rather than being a failure because of that, I had what I considered "bonus onions" the next spring, as they not only survived but thrived under that low tunnel over the winter.

Happy gardening!
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer
C/F temp conversion
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