Cloches! I Made Some.

Plastic cloche

The six raised beds have two half-circle metal rods criss-crossing the “inside” 2/3 of the structure. It makes for some very odd trellises and cloches, I’m finding out. I decided that since the rods made an X over the bed, that was essentially four triangle-shaped sides, which flattens to a perfect square.

Here, in case you need a visual aid: . Imagine the X in the center is a top-down view of my criss-crossing rods.

Now, this doesn’t take into account that two corners of my raised bed stick out beyond the square edges of my X, so I erred on the large size for each plastic square. A 10′ x 25′ roll of clear plastic sheeting got me two covered cloches, and I have almost enough plastic left over for a third. I plan on using it over another bed when it’s warm enough that I want to vent the beds but still protect the plants a smidge.

Because the plastic was a bit big, I used binder clips (I replaced these fancy guys with ones I found in the boat a few days later, plus neatened up the folds and arrangement overall. As you can tell, I’m using bricks to hold down the corners where there’s nothing to clip the plastic to. It’s handy, because I can just shift these bricks, fold back the plastic, and water my seedlings.

Speaking of, I’ve started a few hardier plants and so far, I’m seeing Green Arrow pea, arugula, and radish sprouts. I pruned back my tarragon to the ground, and it’s sprouting up nicely as well…along with some of last year’s damn borage, which I didn’t even notice until I uploaded this photo (the more rounded leaves you can see below are the borage sprouts). Too bad I don’t plan on putting the tomatoes anywhere near here!

Tarragon and some borage

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