Instructables
Picture of How to build a Cold Frame
Even during the winter one can grow greens and herbs just by using a cold frame.
Building a cold frame is easy!

The following is a brief explanation on how to build a cold frame and on how to prepare the soil for your winter garden.
 
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Step 1: Initial considerations

Picture of Initial considerations
First thing to consider before building your cold frame is the location. Ideally it should be south facing to collect the warmth of the sun. Also, consider the wind, (windbreaks), and water,(drainage), elements.

Step 2: Building your cold frame

Picture of Building your cold frame
1. Get yourself an old window frame with glass. Preferably 3-4 feet wide, so you can easily reach the back.
2. Construct a wooden frame that fits your window frame. Make the back of the frame higher than the front. Remember to use non-decomposing wood.
3. Attach the window frame to the wooden frame using heavy duty hinges.

Step 3: How to prepare the soil

Cold frames are hollow at the bottom and are placed on prepared soil.
1. Use a shovel to dig out small squares of the top soil. The area you dig will eventually be the same as the size of the cold frame.
2. Sift squares through a wire screen to filter out usable soil. Discard grass and rocks.
3. Then use a pitchfork to aerate the sub-soil.
4. Mix compost with the sub-soil.
5. Put the freshly filtered top soil back on the sub-soil.
6. Mix compost with the top soil.
7. Finally place your cold frame on top.

Step 4: Other considerations

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Warm weather: on a warm day you will need to prop open your cold frame's window for ventilation.

Step 5: Start planting your garden

Picture of Start planting your garden
Now you have built an environment fit for your winter garden.
trip08844 years ago
How do you know at what angle the frame should be? That is, what are the considerations for angling the windows at a 0 percent slope vs., say, a 30 percent slope?

I've read that too great a pitch (slope) causes hot spots that are not conducive to plant growth, while too low a pitch eliminates too much sunlight. In addition, I do wonder why not make a double sided cold frame...kind of a mini green house.

Any insight would be much appreciated as I have some windows that I'd love to incorporate into a cold frame, but am unsure about the pitch issue.
Eye Poker4 years ago
Non Decomposting wood....such as???????