The most enjoyable thing about growing a garden in your own space is that you get to pass on the extra home grown goodness to friends, family and neighbors in the summer. It gives you a chance to talk about growing flowers and food. It gives you a reason to break the fast pace of life and catch up on the rewarding aspects of life, how everyone is doing. A cold frame is a conventional and unexpected place to start the growing season and cultivate that tradition. Your garden space, no matter how big or small becomes a sacred and embraced space.
It’s a wild and earthly romantic digging your hands in the soil to prepare it for seeds and put down some roots. A garden is an agricultural dream taking care of the soil to make it rich, going to the local hardware and plant stores for just the right seeds and plating information, and when and how to harvest. The rains have been heavy and folks are monitoring the weather forecasts from the southern Delta to the east. Capturing water for the garden from the rain and storing it for usage means a 30-50-percent reduction in water usage, not to mention a reduction in your grocery store bill later on. In some parts of the country a rebate is given for reducing your lawn size and reducing water usage, energy and greenhouse gases reduction and improving habitat. Store water in the fridge for drinking instead of letting the tap run out for a cold glass of water.
Tomatoes and bell peppers, cucumbers, corn, snap beans, and squash. The cold frame will protect tender young seedlings in the event of a late season freeze. Flowers like marigolds, Angelonia, zinnias, celosia, salvia, portaluca, purslane and roses can be planted this month.
April the hot weather vegetables can be planted like hot peppers, lima beans, okra, squash and cucumbers. Prune the beautiful spring flowering after they are done flowering bushes like azalea, camellia, quince, jasmine, viburnum and mock orange. In the shady places the tubers can be planted.
Gardening isn’t just piddling around in the yard, it is a way to extend your growing season and get those little plants going. A cold frame is a good way to protect your young startlets from the cold and any storm damage from harsh winds. Your cold frame or greenhouse is a worthy investment and one worth protecting. It’s a good feeling to be able to pull it out year after year and know what you will be able to do with it.
A heating system should be kept around sixty-degrees and most of the time will just be needed at night. The main ingredient to a cold frame is keeping an eye on the temperature. You will want to vent it, or raise the roof when as it warms during the day, and close it up and warm it up as the weather dictates.