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Clearing out the cold frame


by Jane Moore

My cold frame has served its purpose brilliantly this spring, though its contents are now bursting out of the sides.


Mustard plants growing out the top of a cold frameWith all the other work to get on with on the plot, the cold frame has been somewhat neglected over the past month or so. It's served its purpose brilliantly this spring, though its contents are now bursting out of the sides with quite a terrifying urge to grow and flower profusely.

My idea back in the autumn was to plant it with a few salad leaves such as mustard and rocket that might overwinter and give us some early, spicy leaves to make a few winter salads, as well as some parsley to keep us going in fresh herbs.

The plants didn't do much before Christmas and in January and February they just sat there, looking rather forlorn, pinched and chilly - a bit like me. But, once the longer days and milder nights of March arrived, they sprang into life and leaf and gave us a few early salads - very welcome in the time of leeks and winter roots. Now they've turned into gargantuan monsters, filling the frame and pressing their ample foliage against the glass. They look as if they might even push the lid off the frame if I leave them much longer.

Their ample growth has caused some chuckles among the other plot holders, but I must confess to being rather proud to have grown mustards that could be entered in a giant vegetable contest. You can certainly say I have green fingers now - with bells on!



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Gardeners' World Web User 28/11/2011 at 18:36

I have just started my allotment and i made a cold frame out of fence panels and breeze blocks. with a plastic panel on top. it never cost me a penny.