Where I live, summer winds in late August can wreak havoc on our vegetables gardens. Plants such as corn, peppers, and tomatoes are easily knocked over by the wind which is why staking is essential.
Staking isn’t the only way to prevent winds from knocking over tall vegetable plants. Installing a windbreak or paying attention to the windbreaks in your yard can also help prevent wind damage. Here are a few ideas of windbreaks that I use in my backyard.
Install 1-inch gauge fencing
Fencing does more than keep the deer and other animals out of your garden. A six foot fence with a one-inch (or smaller) mesh does an excellent job of slowing down the wind as it passes through the vegetable garden.
Plant trees or shrubs
Trees and shrubs are popular windbreaks out in the country where they prevent the wind from knocking over crops and blowing away the top soil as well. A well positioned hedge, a row of columnar trees, or plum or cherry trees along the boundaries of your yard do a great job of deflecting the wind away from your vegetable beds. For maximum benefit, windbreaks should be planted at right angles to the prevailing wind direction.
Find wind breaks in your yard
Because our summer winds come from the southwest, I always plant my tallest crops (such as corn and sunflowers) in beds on the northeast side of my yard where the house and garage can act as a buffer against the winds. Wooden fences also work well as wind breaks; so can chain link provided it’s covered with Virginia Creeper or some other kind type of sturdy vine.
For gardeners who lose tall crops due to seasonal summer winds, a windbreak is a great way to prevent damage to vegetable garden. I use a combination of all three of these techniques which does an amazing job of deflecting the wind away from my most vulnerable food crops.
Utah State University: Windbreak benefits and design
More by this contributor:
8 high yield vegetables for the garden
Why I plant vegetables and flowers together
6 vegetables to grow on a fence