Use cloches to protect overwintering crops

Use cloches to protect overwintering crops

Use cloches to protect overwintering crops as the weather turns colder. Even really hardy veg like broad beans, spring cabbage and chard get battered around the edges when it gets seriously windy, cold and wet – so although they’ll survive, your harvest will be unappetisingly shredded. More vulnerable seedlings, like hardy peas and winter salads, can be downright beaten and you risk losing your crop to stem rots or wind damage.

To prevent winter gales wreaking havoc with your veg, pop a cloche over the top as soon as the weather deteriorates. Pop down to our garden centre here in Uffculme and choose the right one for the job. Single ‘bell’ cloches protect individual plants like personal mini-greenhouses: pop them over the top and anchor with tent pegs. For rows of broad bean seedlings or spring cabbages, go for a polythene tunnel: these concertina out over your crops and give them a cosy growing environment during the cold weather. Just fold them up at the end of the season and pop them in the shed ready for next year. Or go for a sturdy longrow cloche made of rigid plastic or glass strong enough to withstand even heavy falls of snow, helping your plants stay intact till spring.