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What you need:
  • A roll of perforated fabric or plastic row covering
  • Garden spikes
Using floating row covers helps protect over wintering salad greens, or helps you get an early start on planting your garden. They are made from lightweight plastic or fabric sheeting that has many small perforations in it. Floating row covers allow water to pass through them as well as sunlight. They also protect against frost and inclement weather. Unroll the material along the row you wish to cover and cut it to the appropriate length.
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Use garden spikes to secure the cover to the ground on one side of the row. Use a spike every five feet or so, and if you're covering more than one row, put some in the middle as well. If garden spikes are not readily available, weighting the edges down with soil works just as well.
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Drape the cover loosely over your plants and secure it on the other side of the row. If you are using the cover to extend your growing season, remove it when you are ready to harvest. If you are using it to help ward off freezing temperatures early in the year, wait until the last frost is over to remove it.