Updated: Jul 25
Having a hoophouse in your garden can have numerous benefits, from extended harvest seasons to increased crop yields. Here we will review the basics of what a hoophouse is and look at the key advantages for both commercial growers and home gardeners when using one.
What is a Hoophouse?
A hoophouse is an unheated greenhouse-type structure that utilizes metal or PVC hoops to build an arched tunnel shape. They are usually covered with plastic sheeting to create an environment conducive to growing crops and plants. Other types of structures exist as well, such as those with hard sides or rectangular shapes instead of curved tunnels. The only requirement is that they must be stable enough to withstand wind and other inclement weather conditions; this is typically achieved by driving upright posts into the ground or using augers for extra stability. There are also larger structures called high tunnels which offer more space than standard hoop houses. These systems are also known by various terms, including hoop greenhouse, grow tunnel, poly-house, and polytunnel.
Benefits of Owning a Hoophouse
Hoophouses offer many advantages both commercial farmers and small-scale gardeners alike:
Extended Harvest Seasons – Due to the warmer climate inside the structure, it’s possible to extend the growing season significantly; with some systems, you may be able to eat fresh vegetables a month later into fall (November) and a month earlier in spring (March).
Wind Protection – In addition to providing shelter from frost, snow, or ice during colder months, these structures also protect plants from strong winds throughout the year – useful for any containerized plants that need extra protection in addition to soil-based ones.
Overwintered Vegetables – A late-season crop of carrots, onions, and greens can be left in the ground over winter due to their protective environment within the hoophouse; these vegetables will then continue growing when temperatures rise again next spring.
Jumpstart Transplants – Hoophouses make ideal nurseries for baby transplants in spring as they provide plenty of warmth while keeping young plants safe from pests.
Summer Protection – They can also be used during summer months if needed; lightweight blankets or fabric cloth can be draped over hoops for insect protection if necessary when raising cucumber transplants or squash plants, for instance. Alternatively, shade covers (mesh material) that reduce direct sunlight exposure can be hung from hoops on particularly hot days.
How Do You Grow Plants in a Hoophouse?
Hoophouses require no floor and can be constructed directly on the ground. Assuming the soil in the field is of good quality, simply prepare and plant. Although some prefer to use raised beds, pots, or grow bags inside the hoop house. Proper drainage is essential, and a consistent water source is required throughout the seasons. As with a traditional garden bed or greenhouse, seeding or transplanting seedlings is possible inside a hoophouse.
Having your own hoophouse provides many benefits over traditional garden setups and greenhouses alike; not only do they act as protective shelters against inclement weather conditions all year round but they also allow you to extend harvest seasons significantly while jump starting new plantings come springtime in particular. Moreover, they can even play an important role during summer months thanks to their ability to shield young plants from pests while reducing direct sunlight exposure when needed -all without needing any additional heating equipment either! With so much potential on offer, it stands as no surprise why so many small-scale farmers and home gardeners alike have opted for these versatile structures in recent years -making them one of the most sought-after gardening investments today!
Roberts Ranch Hoophouses is the premier provider of all of your hoophouse needs. Whether you're an experienced gardener or just looking to get started on your hoophouse journey, we have the skills and expertise to go along with high-quality products that will have you growing like a pro in no time. If you have any questions about any of the fine products we offer or are just interested in learning more about hoophouses, contact our team today. We'll give you all the information you need to make an informed choice about what is right for you and your unique situation.