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loving life on the farm
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am making a cold frame using bales of hay as the sides. I bought 3 mil plastic for the top. Will this work? like let enough light in, etc?

I am thinking that I will definitely have to open it during the days and close at night-I'm really just experimenting and seeing what the temp will be in the frame as opposed to outside.

Just not sure if I should try to find glass or if the 3 mil plastic will work.
Any ideas?

Thanks,
Harplade
 

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Master Of My Domain
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i bet it will work just fine.
 

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Premium Member
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I don't think the hay bales are needed. I made a cold frame of rebar, cattle panel, and 2 kinds of hardware store plastic - no insulation. The rebar formed the shape of the ends and cross member. The cattle panel was tied onto the cross member with tie wire, which acted like a hinge so I could lift the panel. I wrapped both sides of the cattle panel with an expensive clear plastic, not a translucent product. The sides and back were plastic tarp. It worked fine in Colorado weather.

Hay bales are a habitat for fungus, molds, mice, and insects.Your climate is warmer than CO and wetter. Moisture in the hay will create the necessary survival needs for the above pests.

Good luck, whichever way you go.
Gary
 

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If using hay bales, I assume that the plastic will be laying flat. Here, my cold frames are facing south and at about a 3/12 pitch. In April, with morning air temperatures in the 30s, I may be cooking my seedlings at over 100ºF using glass and plexiglass for tops. Your plastic will produce similar results. However, you will not know the exact conditions without first testing it. Set it up with nothing in it and watch the water condense on the plastic. That's from heat removing moisture from the soil. Place a thermometer in there and see what temperatures you have after the sun has been shining on it for a few hours. Then you'll see how effective your simple cold frame may become.

Martin
 
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