Extending the Growing Season Techniques (Early Planting)
Sorry if this has been covered before (and I'm almost certain it has). I live in MD in zone 6b/7 and typically have my vegetables transplants hardened off and planted two weeks past the 90% frost date (which for my area is May 1st).
I have a small (15' x 20') raised vegetable garden and grow all my own veggies from seed indoors using grow lights (usually prefer heirlooms/OP if I have a choice).
I'm wondering if there are any tried and true techniques to getting an extra 4 weeks to 6 weeks out of the growing season using early protection techniques.
My understanding is that putting veggies out too early stunts their growth so significantly that one is better off just waiting until the soil temps reach +45F at night consistently.
If any one has any "tried and true" techniques that are not too laborious which have really extended their growing season I would be all ears. I was thinking of encapsulating the small garden in a makeshift greenhouse until the temps get hot enough, but I'm not sure if this would keep the soil temps where they need to be at night.