Community Garden Gardening Homesteading

Build Your Own Indoor Accessible Cold Frame

Running Out Of Room!

Every year I start the majority of my garden from seed.  The ultimate goal would be to start all of it myself.

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But every year my garden also expands!  Add in annuals, a few perennials, herbs, and the extra seedlings started “just in case” and it can take up a lot of space, fast!

Some day we hope to have a greenhouse but right now it’s just not in the budget.

I am fortunate to have a very handy husband though!  We started out with a small room in the basement that hubs added a grow light and switch to.  We put in a few shelves and I was pretty much out of the way.

Until I wasn’t…

Pin Me For Later!!If you live in a northern climate a cold frame is a must for a longer growing season. Make seed starting even easier by making it indoor accessible...

Seed flats spread out to the laundry room, and then I bought one of those flimsy 4 tiered greenhouses.

Well, that fell apart quick so flats were on the dining room table, which has a huge South facing window.

This doesn’t really bother me, too bad.  I like being able to walk by and see how my plant babies are doing.  But when you have a husband that wants a house to look like no one lives there you tend to have some problems.

What’s a girl to do??

Enlist that hubby to build me more space, within our budget!

One of the awesome things about my seed starting room, is that it has a good sized South facing window!  So what better place to put a cold frame than right over that window?

I can’t even believe how much easier this has made things for me!  It has no back and is flush with the foundation of the house, so all I have to do is open the window and slide my flats in and out!

How Did We Build It?

I say “we” and laugh at myself a bit.  I held pieces and nodded yes when it seemed like that’s what Nick was looking for.

I’m not ashamed!  This is by no means a skill of mine.  I could make it one if I really wanted to, but I have enough on my plate.

Another great thing about handy man hubby’s job, he gets a lot of left over materials free!  Yay free!

So all of the wood used for this project were scraps brought home from a job.  The shelves were taken out of that flimsy greenhouse that fell apart.

They only things we bought were the plastic sheeting, special screws, and some foam that helps with the seams.

Your measurements may vary, depending on the size of your window or materials you pick up.

Ours were the following measurements, to fit around the window.

Nick built the frame with a removable shelf, made out of the shelves from the old greenhouse.  The shelves are loose and the center bar comes out.  This way I have room for taller plants.

Next, he leveled out the ground and fit the cold frame tightly in around the window.

Next we cut the plastic sheeting into pieces to fit all sides.  This was a pain!  You need to use tin snips and go slowly, because it can crack really easily from the pressure.

We attached the plastic with the screws found in the same section of the hardware store as the sheeting, and fit the foam (also found here) around the edges.

All that was left was to add the seed flats!  I closed it up with a thermometer and came back to check about a half an hour later.

The temp was steady at 85°F, with outside temps of 50°F.  To lower the temp, I just have to crack the window into the house.  No heat is being let out of the house, but the temp isn’t getting too high in the cold frame!

I love it!

Do you start your own seeds?  Do you use a cold frame?  Tell me about it in the comments!

This post was shared on Clever Chicks Link Up

  • https://plus.google.com/+AliciaOwen

    This is such a neat idea! Plus, you sound like me. I say “we” but really mean I stand there and hand him screws and whatnot and offer moral support. ha ha Thanks for sharing on the Homesteader Hop.

    • http://achickandhergarden.com

      I always say that Nick just likes an audience and that is what he considers “help.” lol

  • https://twitter.com/SkipTheBag

    What a great idea for starting seeds. I help Hubby make things around the house too. Thanks for sharing on Waste Less Wednesday Blog Hop!

  • https://www.facebook.com/app_scoped_user_id/1000458900055095/

    This is a great idea and I love to do projects with my husband around the house. Thank you for sharing at Dishing it and Digging link party.

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