Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Our Evolving Cold Frame

I thought I'd share our cold frame with you today. With warmer days, rain and a bit of fertilizer, it's coming along nicely. I'm always surprised how something so simple can provide food most of the winter. We tried something new this year. Instead of hay bales for the walls, which had to be bought every year, we used cinder blocks we had left over from home construction. It worked just as well. We cover it with heavy plastic weighed down with rocks or bricks, and that's it. On warm days, and nights a few degrees above freezing, we keep the cover off. Spinach is on the end shown above.

Then broccoli

Mixed winter greens- a variety of kales, mustards, rape, then swiss chard and dill

A mix of lettuces, with a basket at the ready for picking.

The trees help keep the plastic from squashing the plants when it rains or snows, but it still sags with a heavy rain. We just lift it up and drain the water-- two people make this job easier, but I've done it by myself. I encourage you to be creative, use what you've got on hand, and give it a try this fall. Even something much smaller can provide you with some good greens over the winter. It's a wonderful thing to pick your dinner!


cookingwithgas said...

brilliant Laurie!

kriips said...

Looks awesome, Laurie! I really want to try to grow something throughout the winter this year! Somehow I'm always so exhausted in the fall from all the growing of things... but seeing you and Jennie harvesting beautiful salads, while I'm still dreaming about them, makes me want to try and beat those fall veggie blues...

JLK Jewelry said...

Isn't it great to be growing year round. Anne, come by some time to see and we'll also pick you a bag.

Anonymous said...

oh i am SO jealous of all your greens. i'm hoping to plant, but not so optimistic as i have been in previous years, life is busy!!

still too cold here too.

i like it though. any time i ses bits of tree, even when it's helping to protect the younglings!!