Thursday, May 25, 2017

Is setting up Wall O' Water's still worth it?

Newly set up Wall O' Waters
I've written before about the Wall O' Water product for season extension in Colorado's high and dry continental climate. This is the one with tubes in the side of the plastic cone that you fill with water to absorb the sun's heat and keep the plant growing within them warm.

What about setting them up now in late May when the growing season is supposedly on and the danger of a spring freeze low?

My answer is it is still a good idea for tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and warm season vegetables. Why? Now they can be used not so much to extend the season and protect from a spring freeze but to warm plants at night.

Have you noticed that nights are still in the forties F?  As I mentioned in the April 22 post on "Choosing tomato varieties", the minimum nighttime temperature for growing tomatoes is 55 degrees F. In our high elevation climate with low humidity, there isn't anything to hold in heat on clear nights so radiational cooling is extreme.

If you look at historical average low temperatures for Denver, we don't exceed 55 degrees F until June 22nd. Even so, we often have nights over the summer below 55 degrees in June, July and August - 16 nights in 2016!

Go ahead and set up a Wall O' Water when planting your tomatoes out over Memorial Day to take the chill off the night temperatures. Your plants will get up and growing faster for your effort.

Photo Credit: Newly set up Wall O' Water - Carl Wilson

Click here for manufacturer's website Wall O' Water

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