In this lesson we are going to learn how to use bell cloches. Bell cloches, or gardening cloches are widely used in market gardening to protect plants from bad weather and pests.
The plants obtain the maximum penetration of sun rays thanks to the curved shape of the bell cloches, or jars, which act like mini-greenhouses, allowing for an accelerated development of seedlings and young plants.
It is preferable to use them at the beginning of spring or at the end of autumn to protect the seedlings, as well as to prolong the growing season by many weeks.
In this example, we will need:
Step 1: Mark the diameter of the bell jars on the ground like so.
Step 2: Plant the seedlings in the centre of the markings.
Step 3: Place the wooden blocks under the bell jars, so that air can circulate freely. Ensure they are never completely closed as a lack of air could lead to the introduction and development of disease-causing fungi that are harmful to the plants.
When it is very sunny, remove the bell jars so that the plants don't burn.
And when the weather begins to warm up at the end of spring, remove the bell jars permanently. By this stage the seedlings will be strong enough to develop healthily without them.
when the temperature begins to get colder, however, put the bell jars back over late-blooming plants like peas and salad plants. This will extend the time in which they can continue growing by a number of weeks.
Wash the bell jars using soapy water at the changing of each season to avoid the spread of disease from one culture to another.