Dry Soil in Greenhouse

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Hi,

Last summer we built a hoop house filled with raised beds in Wyoming. So far this winter it's stayed fairly warm inside the hoop house and the soil in the beds is pretty dry. Should I water the beds occasionally throughout the winter just to keep some moisture in the soil or is there a better way to overwinter the beds? Also, has anyone had success using cover crops inside a greenhouse? Thanks!
 
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Greetings, welcome to the Forums.

If there is nothing growing in your hoop house over Winter, it isn't crucial that you water the bare soil.

There would be benefits if you could grow cover crop over winter, such as Winter rye (Secale cereale), in which case you would need to water it. Winter Rye is the hardiest of commonly used cover crops, but in Wyoming (USDA Zones 5 and lower) you would still need to start it relatively early in Fall. When does your Fall vegetable harvest end? Also, how warm is your Hoop House staying this Winter?
 
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I'm usually finished harvesting around the middle of September although this year will be potentially later with the new hoop house. Depending on weather and sunshine, temps inside the hoop house have been around 30-45 degrees.
 
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That is milder than I would have thought. I think a successful cover crop is quite possible.
 
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I would then obviously have to keep it watered and just do the same as I would if it were outside of the hoop house? Work it in before it goes to seed?
 
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Yes, that is basically it. A cover crop both adds more organic matter to the soil and keeps the soil biota active.
 
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I built a small green house it is dry as desert inside. I have to catch rain want and make it go inside the green house. I did away with my raised beds they are double work, double cost, and need 3 times more water than no raised beds. The taller raised beds are the more water they need. I want a low cost low maintenance garden.
 

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