Cold Frame - Knowledgebase Question

Steele city, NE
Question by tstarr
March 5, 1998
When in Nebraska can I start using my cold frame? It is made of straw bales and thermopane window.


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Answer from NGA
March 5, 1998

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It really depends on the weather, what you are growing, and how accessible the cold frame is--in case a cold spell is predicted and you need to move things back inside.

I've used a hay bale cold frame for years. One thing I've found is that mine isn't at all air tight, so at night cold air really leaks in. I set my cool weather crops out about May 1, a month before our last frost date here in Vermont. But if really cold weather threatens, I either bring them indoors or cover the entirecold frame with blankets and tarps. I wait until just a week or so before our last frost date to bring out my warm weather crops like tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers, using the cold frame just to harden them off. I set them out a little too early one year, and I think the cool night temperatures stunted them a little.



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