Thursday, December 29, 2016

How to Extend Your Growing Season

I am not one to fight nature, I'd rather go along with it rather than against it.

I don't have much luck when growing things in my house under a grow light. I do better with plants I can plant directly in the soil.

Like Gene Logsdon, mentioned in his book, Two-Acre Eden, he decreased his use of artificial structures but still finds the hot beds and cold frames still come in pretty handy.

He says what he does, is nails together old pieces of wood (10 x  2 pieces) that he scrounged from a dilapidated barn. He makes a box-like frame, sets it on the ground and digs out the soil to a depth of 2-feet, piling that soil around the outside of the boards. He then puts a foot of horse manure in the bottom and returns about a foot of the soil he just dug out. He the puts a clear piece of plastic over the top.

In the summer he can use it without the clear cover, but when the cold weather sets in he puts the plastic cover back on. He has successfully grown Long Standing Bloomsdale spinach, Oak leaf lettuce and watercress in his.

Below is another informative video on how to build a cold frame. In this video, Steve from Alberta Gardens shows you step-by-step on how to build it. The frame only took about 20 minutes to build. He built these for his strawberries and grapes.

Basically, he has an old window and he starts out by scraping off the old paint.

He then sands it down and will later paint it with a non-toxic paint

The frame is built to match the size of his window. He used 2-1/2" decking screws he had on hand.

To attach the hinges he used either 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 screws. He did say to make sure that the hinges are going outward.

If you don't have time to build your own, or just want to take a peak to get some ideas to build your own.

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