Have you owned a polytunnel in the UK before? What is the best growing temperature for vegetables in a polytunnel? There are many responsibilities to take into account, including this discussion.
Health means wealth, and when you are looking for ways to grow vegetables fresh from the farm to the table, you must know the measures and the guidelines. From what vegetables are ideal for polytunnels to learning the proper temperature range, this blog has it all for every farmer and gardener in the United Kingdom.
What Vegetables Do Well In A Polytunnel?
Gardening specialists in the UK will tell you that growing vegetables in the polytunnel may be a challenge, but you can get through with this very easily. Take good note that the best vegetables to cultivate in the polytunnel are those you can consume and sell to the market. They must be able also to thrive indoors.
The best vegetables to have include:
What Is The Best Growing Temperature For Vegetables In A Polytunnel?
The best temperature that must be within your polytunnel is 85 degrees Fahrenheit, so regulating the temperature should be the first lesson you must know as you keep the temperature stable within your polytunnel.
Proper ventilation is also crucial when taking care of your plants, as what plant specialists can share. The polytunnel can offer the ideal environment, but it remains a duty for you to keep the correct temperature levels in the area.
Many of these polytunnels are present to source the energy from the sun as you heat the air inside, though there are supplemental heat sources you can have with electric or gas heaters. Like your automobile, the interior of the building may quickly heat up to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit on warm, sunny days, so regulating the temperature is necessary to avoid the plants to suffer.
Polytunnels should also have vents, as you have heard of earlier, either the top vent that opens a hatch right in the ceiling or side vents, as well as fans that whisk out hot air and welcome cooler air. You can prefer vents that either operate automatically or manually.
The manual systems are more affordable, but remember to constantly open and shut your vents during the day as you close them during the night. Some individuals may consider this extra work, and for those who are not at home by the day, it may be an issue, significantly when the weather suddenly changes.
Take note that automatic ventilation systems work on sensors that kick on the fans or heating systems if the temperature rises or falls below limitations in the system. It should be similar to how your house heating and cooling system exists.
Can You Grow Vegetables In A Polytunnel Year-Round?
The polytunnel is a preferred addition to your vegetable plantation, enabling gardeners in the UK to make the most of the sunlight. Even the smallest, unheated structures can let UK gardeners extend the seasons with the polytunnel as they produce the best crops for a wide range of vegetables.
The best polytunnels are those you can use most times of the year. Heated greenhouses will allow for maximum use all year round, but rarely they will be cost-effective.
Late winter toward early spring
Be sure to sow hardy plants, including cabbage, celeriac, early leeks, Brussels sprouts, lettuce, onions, and peas, for planting out when the warmer weather has arrived. You may utilise your heated propagator to ensure the proper germination.
Heated polytunnels may have peppers, tomatoes, and more tender plants that you can sow early with the propagator.
Middle of spring
While one may use a polytunnel all year round, and this is a guarantee that we offer, sowing fast-growing tender plants like cucumbers, pumpkins, squashes, and courgettes are best during mid-spring. You may also add French beans, sweetcorn, and melons. Up until late in the spring or early in the summer, they will grow best. You can also utilise the heated propagator to ensure germination.
Late in the spring to early in the summer season
What you can do is to cultivate summer polytunnel plants into the final positions indoors. Then, you may also harden off and plant out young plants for your outdoor crops once frost has passed.
The middle of summer
The mid-summer UK gardener’s dream must have them harvesting crops like melon, French bean, and cucumber. They may also include parsley and calabrese when summer crops have ended.
Late in the summer
When your spaces permit, late in the summer season, what you can do is to sow lettuces, spicy leaves for your salad, baby carrots, and more before the autumn sun. You can also, right now, start planting new potatoes for the Christmas season using the heated polytunnels.
In the autumn, remove the spent summer vegetables as you plant out lettuces into beds and grow bags ready for winter harvesting. You may also plant calabrese, French beans, and parsley prepared to get the seedlings mature indoors.
After this, you may slow broad beans and peas to overwinter and plant out once the clay soil becomes more manageable early in the spring season. Sow hardy lettuces and pea shoots to harvest these indoors during the spring. Finally, move your herbs in pots and keep them cropping longer. Things will get better when you take heed of these steps.
What Temperature Should A Polytunnel Be At Night?
Consider that the temperature must be at 32 degrees Celsius (90 degrees Fahrenheit) and 24 degrees Fahrenheit (75 degrees Fahrenheit) at night. This polytunnel temperature for your vegetables should also depend on the crop growing at either cooler or lower temperatures to produce the ideal results. Plants may have more branches and flower buds compared with plants in warmer conditions.
What Temperature Is Too Cold For A Polytunnel?
Having the right temperature is downright necessary. At the minimum, the heated polytunnel must be free from frosts at 37 degrees Fahrenheit. Still, tender plants like citrus trees, half-hardy fuchsias and pelargoniums must have happier outcomes with minimum temperature at 45 degrees Fahrenheit, safest at 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
How Can I Heat My Polytunnel For Free In The Winter?
To answer this thought, here are the steps to follow. Finding opportunities to heat the polytunnel without paying the cost could be challenging, but there are cheap alternatives to make this happen.
The cost of heating the polytunnel during the winter may be greater than the savings, as well as the advantages of having one on your own. Thus, it is excellent to use the mini polytunnel, have a rabbit hutch in the space, install composting hay, or dustbins to save up on the costs. We answered the question: “What is the best growing temperature for vegetables in a polytunnel?”
With these insights in your collection, you can grow your vegetables in the ideal temperature in the polytunnel. Get started today.