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Pictures of the Garden/Cold Frame we Built!

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posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 02:50 PM
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We're growing more and more of our own food every year. This year, we decided to make a huge cold frame and hopefully have something growing in it through the coming Winter. We may not make it through the coldest times, but with the strong sun here and elevation, we have a good chance.

So this is about a 4x6 foot space. The garden portion is lined with Styrofoam (covered in black plastic) and concrete blocks to attract and hold the heat in the soil. In this pic, it's not quite filled with soil, so you can see the blocks and insulation around the edges:





Here, it's filled with soil:





This is the start of the cold frame top with acrylic windows in each end. (We have the "plugs" for these windows for the cold winter nights.) The entire top is lined with 1.5" Styrofoam.





We made the top windows out of some old windows:





And here it is sitting on top of the garden bed:





We had to prop it open right away...





So the baby basil plants inside wouldn't get toasted:





This is what we LOVE to do! We love to build things.


Hope you enjoyed it!



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 05:30 PM
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WOW. This is cool. Someday you'll be living off the grid. Considering how our food supply is contaminated .. you are living more healthy than most Americans. Congratulations!



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 06:40 PM
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Hey Benevolent Heretic, that's a very awesome project.


I've built a lot of cold frames over the years, but nothing that elaborate. Most of mine were right at ground level in the garden, or along one wall of the house.

It's amazing how much of a jump start you can get on spring with something like this. Depending on your climate, you may even be able to grow some cold tolerant veggies right through the winter.


I want one.



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 06:59 PM
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Thanks.

I've seen the ones in the ground, but our soil here is a delightful mixture of sand, clay and huge rocks.
So we decided on the above ground bed. We have a couple more above ground gardens, but this is our first coldframe.



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 07:01 PM
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That looks very good. Looks like a fun thing to build.


Great job



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 07:36 PM
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I have a couple pieces of advice that might save your glass.

Install a system that will lock the front in the position you want.
I've had the wind blow my props away and smashed the glass when it slammed closed.
A simple notched board on each side of the frame that locks into a bolt at different levels will secure it for just a couple buck.

If you live in an area that is prone to hail, cut a piece of plywood that fits over the front, and keep it nearby. If the weather turns nasty you can pop the wood over the glass for protection. A couple of little hooks on each side will hold it in place so the wind won't pick it up.

The wood can serve a second purpose on very cold nights.
Placed over the glass it will help retain the heat inside when the temperature drops.




Now you got me thinking, if it doesn't snow tomorrow I'm gonna get my hands dirty in the garden.




[edit on 15/4/2007 by anxietydisorder]



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 08:13 PM
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Thanks, AD! In the "prop" picture above, the doors have a large screw coming out the end and going through a hole in the boards. It's our temporary system for keeping them open, but we're going to do a more permanent solution.

The plywood for hail is a great idea as we do get some serious hail here from time to time. Thanks!


Originally posted by anxietydisorder
Now you got me thinking, if it doesn't snow tomorrow I'm gonna get my hands dirty in the garden.



Cool!



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 08:38 PM
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Nice looking cold frame, BH.
I'm sooo jealous.


If we ever tear out our patio, which does nothing but heat up the east side of our house, I wanta to putone of those in at ground level.

Did you have plans form somewhere, or just clever handypersons


Wha else are you going to grow there????



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 09:22 PM
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Originally posted by DontTreadOnMe
Wha else are you going to grow there????


We designed it. We're going to have a tomato, a few hot peppers and arugula in there this summer. And probably collards and other hearty greens in the winter.



posted on Apr, 15 2007 @ 10:10 PM
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That is very cool! I need one of those up here in the NW. That looks like it should work very nice for you.

We plant our tomatoes in tires every year stacked 3 high. The black absorbs the suns heat all day and keeps the soil warm all night. Last year our tomotoes were? ....gosh? near 9-10 foot tall, and we had a ton of them
There is a big trellis made out of Maple branches that goes over the row of tires, and we tie the plants up to the trellis as they grow. It works so well. Anxiety disorder...living up in Canada, having a set up like that may benefit you?



posted on Apr, 16 2007 @ 09:58 AM
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That is definitely a cool design you have there. We have the same type of no-good, grow nothin' soil here. Maybe we should give this idea a try.



posted on Apr, 16 2007 @ 10:34 AM
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I highly recommend it, Access. We have a couple other above ground beds built with 2x6s and filled with soil and our own compost and they're GREAT! They kept us in salads and squash all last summer.

I see I said "hearty" greens when I meant "hardy" greens. I guess they're hearty, too!



posted on Apr, 16 2007 @ 06:49 PM
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Originally posted by AccessDenied
That is definitely a cool design you have there. We have the same type of no-good, grow nothin' soil here. Maybe we should give this idea a try.


These kind of beds not only help you use higher-quality soil, but they also use less water per amount of food produced than do beds right in the ground. Which is nice here in the land of Drought...



posted on Apr, 16 2007 @ 08:49 PM
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Originally posted by jensouth31
We plant our tomatoes in tires every year stacked 3 high. The black absorbs the suns heat all day and keeps the soil warm all night. Last year our tomotoes were? ....gosh? near 9-10 foot tall, and we had a ton of them
There is a big trellis made out of Maple branches that goes over the row of tires, and we tie the plants up to the trellis as they grow. It works so well. Anxiety disorder...living up in Canada, having a set up like that may benefit you?


How clever!! What folks won't do for homegrown tomatoes

How far north are we talking?
Do you know what USDA zone you are in?
www.usna.usda.gov...



posted on Apr, 19 2007 @ 05:24 PM
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To truly have a Garden you must add a pond...

All gardens need that water feel to set it off. Preferably with the giant goldfish.



[edit on 19-4-2007 by Royal76]



posted on Apr, 19 2007 @ 05:58 PM
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BH, that is SO cool!!


I live in an apartment, of course, but last year, my mom and I grew string beans, right in our window sill. The "trellis" (that we made) hung from the ceiling. We also had various herbs (thyme, rosemary, golden seal, etc) growing. It worked so well, we're thinking about doing it again.

I wish I had a garden.




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