What is a good and, hopefully, frugal solution for providing shade to long vines?

In my case, I'm dealing with pumpkin vines on the ground.

I imagine a combination of sheets and chicken wire might do it, but I imagine chicken wire doesn't qualify as frugal.

Any ideas?

Here's my layout

enter image description here

  • 1
    can you please define "frugal" in your case? Shade cloth (fabric) is without doubt the best thing home gardeners can use in situations like yours. Shade cloth comes in variety of shade densities (you don't want to be blocking out too much of the sun). Shade cloth, if looked after will last for years, therefore making it a worthwhile investment...
    – Mike Perry
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 21:16
  • I just used the word frugal to mean efficient in terms of money and effectiveness. Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 21:21
  • then I would look into shade cloth (like I said previously "if looked after will last for years, therefore making it a worthwhile investment") that offers 40% protection from the sun. Seeing as you're wanting to cover such a large area (large for the average home gardener) and also want to make it easily removable I would look into some kind of hooping system, or rig up something yourself with timber & support wires (rope).
    – Mike Perry
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 21:29
  • 1
    @Mike - Like this, right? i.imgur.com/ubL4r.jpg Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 22:21
  • exactly! & that is a LOT! of shade cloth ;-)
    – Mike Perry
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 23:14

1 Answer 1


It sounds like you have sheets to spare, so a temporary "clothesline" could to the trick. Drive in a few tall-ish stakes, get yourself some clothesline and clothespins from the hardware store (or some suitable rope if you have it laying around), and hang up sheets so they cast a shadow on your plants.

Just make sure you don't completely shade the plants -- they do need to get some light.

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