Fremont Garden was awarded a grant in the spring of 2018 from Liberty Prairie Foundation to build a movable high tunnel hoop house for growing tomatoes. For the last few years, the rainy weather has contributed to a fungal disease called blight that can severely affect tomatoes. Blight can be spread through the air and can live in the soil and spread to plants in subsequent years. Early signs are yellowing and brown spots on lower leaves. The disease spreads up the plant, eventually spreading to the fruit creating black spots that lead to rotting. Growing tomatoes in covered conditions allows the grower to limit their exposure to overhead precipitation, reducing the chances of blight.
This hoop house design is light–4 people can easily move the high tunnel to a new location each year to allow for crop rotation. We can also use the hoop house to extend our growing season and overwinter cool season greens, such as spinach, arugula, and lettuce.
See our blogpost for more on our hoop house’s first year: