March 1, 2012

DIY Gardening with Mr. C

I was very excited to hear from Mr. C with some new gardening tips to start the 2012 gardening season.  For all our new members, each week on Thursday during gardening season, we have a guest post from Mr. C who is our blog home gardener.  Last year we received some great gardening tips.  Make sure you visit often to see his new posts each week.  Here is his first post of the new year.

Hello Everyone!

Did that first seed catalog arrival get you longing to start gardening?  If you don’t want to wait, you can lengthen both ends of your growing season by using a “cold frame” (miniature green-house). It could be as basic as a box with a transparent top (like an old storm window).  The sun warms the air and soil inside during the day (even cloudy days) and the enclosure traps some of the heat and keeps its’ loss overnight.  On very warm and sunny days, it may be necessary to open the top slightly so as not to cook the plants inside. To preclude this from happening, you can incorporate a temperature regulating opening device (see next paragraph). I was able to grow watermelons by starting them in a cold frame, and then later moving them to the garden.  My current box (shown below) has galvanized and sloping (for rain & snow run-off) vinyl sides, a 2x2pressure treated frame and an aluminum/Plexiglass storm window top. I tie the windows down to prevent them from blowing away (I could add hinges instead). I set it over my parsley bed in the fall to allow me to have fresh herbs all winter. Even if parsley freezes, it is quite normal when it thaws.

If you type “cold frame” in your on-line search box, you can see a vast array of kits (starting around $40) and automatic opening mechanisms available. Stores do not stock them but Home Depot and Lowes will allow you to order on-line for free in-store pickup. If you act now, you could be eating fresh lettuce before spring arrives.
Happy Gardening!
Mr. C

No comments:

Post a Comment