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Thread: Heating a cold frame in winter

  1. #1
    Nickjr44 is offline Germinator
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    Default Heating a cold frame in winter

    I have made a wooden cold frame with polycarbonate sheet windows on the top. I'm wanting to start my seeds in this then plant them out at the right time. To keep a temperature at about 18c has anyone used a tubular heater electric before? I. Just intending to use this in the winter. My box is 1.2m x 600 mm wide and raised off the ground on a stand.

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    Bigmallly's Avatar
    Bigmallly is offline Think outside the box
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    Hello Nick & welcome to the Jungle, heating a coldframe goes against what it is intended for which is to acclimatize your plants prior to planting out............having said that here are a few ideas.

    10 Ways To Heat A Cold Frame Over Winter - ThePrepperProject.com
    Last edited by Bigmallly; 06-02-2017 at 10:08 PM.
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  3. #3
    Nickjr44 is offline Germinator
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    Red face

    Thank you for your ideas, its just to get my seeds started just like a propagator so was just wondering if an electric tubular heater would be any good!

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    Bigmallly's Avatar
    Bigmallly is offline Think outside the box
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    I don't see why not Nick. I maybe under use mine as you can grow all year round in one:


    https://www.hws.edu/fli/pdf/cold_frame.pdf
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  5. #5
    fishpond is offline Tuber
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    The problem with using a tubular heater in this situation when most (if not all) of the plants will be at ground level, is that there will be a big difference between the air temp (warm) and ground temp (cold).
    Assuming a power supply is available to use and you are able to completely water proof the box on the themostat then I would think a Parasene soil warming cable( either 3 or 6 metre--(you will need to work it out given the area you need to heat) with a suitable thermostat would be of more use, as this will keep the roots warm, whilst also supplying gentle heat to the leaves to stop them getting frosted.
    A max/min thermometer within the cold frame would also be useful.
    Nicos likes this.
    Feed the soil, not the plants.
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  6. #6
    Nicos's Avatar
    Nicos is offline 'Allo 'Allo !
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    I can't offer any help...but my first thought is won't there be condensation...humidity..possibly causing problems?
    "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

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    fishpond is offline Tuber
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    Hi Nicos
    I assumed the lid could be opened very sightly to allow air to circulate (it may be possible to fit an automatic greenhouse window type opener or 2 to the lid, but it may not be worth the trouble when a twig or a small stone would do the job). I have never seen condensation problems on the big Victorian cold frames you find in Victorian walled fruit /veg gardens. But then again those cold frames never appeared to have closely fitting lids.
    Nicos likes this.
    Feed the soil, not the plants.
    (helps if you have cluckies)

    Man v Squirrels & Ants (sole breeder of Tomper)
    Bob

  8. #8
    ESBkevin is offline Tuber
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    If you dig a big hole under it and fill with fresh manure the composting process creates steady heat for weeks and you can place seed trays on top inside the cold frame.
    Snoop Puss likes this.

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