Cold Frame Construction – Part 1

Posted on Feb 15 2011 at 10:08:52 PM in How-To

So I spent another Sunday afternoon building for the garden.  Today I started the first half of a cold frame. My plan for the cold frame is to make use a piece of old glass and build a frame to hold the glass.  Then I will use some of my extra pieces of plywood and build the frame where the plants will go. My cold frame construction started with a trip to the local Habitat for Humanity Restore.  I purchased four storm windows for $4. While I was looking around I also found some parts for rain barrels, but that is a post for another day.

Windows purchased from the Habitat for Humanity Restore

I pulled out the Rip Saw and cut some boards to build a frame to hold the window.

The Rip Saw and the boards that I ripped to build the window frame.

After ripping all the pieces I made sure the window would fit on all four sides.

Yeah! The window fits.

After making sure the window fit. I drew lines to make the correct mitre cuts, and then went to my mitre box and cut the angles.

With all the angles cut I used corner clamps to hold everything in place.

Corner clamps in place, and all corners mostly tight.

The corners were not perfect.  I will use caulk to seal up all air gaps so cold air does not get in too easily.

Completing the frame.

Drilling pilot holes and then I put two sheet rock screws into each corner.  I think the frame will be strong.

After tightening up the frame.  I used mirror hangers to hold the window to the frame.

The window and frame completed.

I have read and heard about various “correct” ways to use a cold frame.  Some people put them into the ground while others leave them on top of the ground. My plan is to put mine on our back stoop.  Our back stoop/patio is made of cement and faces the South and gets fantastic sun. I think I will be able to put my more mature seedlings out in the cold frame for a while before I am able to put them into the ground.  I “Googled” cold frame and Google came back with 2,160,000 results.  There a lot of uses and opinions regarding cold frames.  My experience has been many people will tell you the “best or right” way to use a cold frame.  I suggest reading about several different methods and then select the one you think is best for your situation.

I do recommend using a cold frame.  Using a cold frame extends your growing area or allows you to protect plants outside sooner.  So do some additional reading (look for books at your local library) and build a cold frame.

The weather here has been warm then cold.  This week we are anticipating warm and cold, but it is getting warmer if only slightly.  I have plans to plant seeds after Presidents’ day so look forward to those blog posts.

If anyone is planning on going to the Corning, NY Habitat for Humanity Restore let me know I have a coupon.

Stay warm.


  Article Information
Created: Feb 15 2011 at 10:08:52 PM
Updated: Feb 15 2011 at 10:09:56 PM
Category: How-To
Language: English