What the heck is that tent for?

shade cloth tent

In the hot weather, we shade newly-planted seeds and seedlings from the full sun to help reduce soil evaporation, and keep the top inch or so of soil from drying out and killing the new tender plants. We'll remove it after the new plants have their first real leaves, and we think the roots have established themselves in deeper soil. This shade cloth lets through about 50% of the sunlight.

A second avantage of protecting seedlings with this type of permeable shade cloth is that it breaks up heavy rain into a mist, which prevents damage to small seedlings and lessens erosion.

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