The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Cold frame protection

cold frame crack sealage

We finished up the new cold frame today.

Two coats of paint and some caulk where we connected the two windows should help it to go well into the future.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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it looks purty! :-)
Comment by deb Wed Mar 18 17:47:29 2015
Why did you paint it white instead of black? Wouldn't black assist with heat retention?
Comment by Na Yan Wed Mar 18 23:18:56 2015
Na Yan --- The real answer is that Mark thought it would look nice in white, and I figured it was his project. :-) The longer answer is that I've read differing opinions on the best color for a cold frame/greenhouse. White will reflect more light/heat onto the plants and ground, which can be helpful. Black soaks up heat, but wood isn't a very good thermal mass, so I'm not sure you'd get much long-term effect there. I suspect it's six of one and half a dozen of the other. If the frame were made of stone instead of wood, then painting it black would probably make more sense.
Comment by anna Thu Mar 19 12:06:05 2015

You could put place a layer of old bricks on the ground inside the frame and paint their top sides black. That would give you extra thermal mass and a surface that absorbs heat.

I'm undecided about whether one should put e.g. a layer of insulating foam under those bricks. It would help the bricks warm up faster, but it would also decouple their thermal mass from the earth.

Comment by Roland_Smith Fri Mar 20 15:07:42 2015

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