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hendi_alex
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Time for this weather to settle!

I've got about 50 early tomato plants which are getting quite large now. Every 4-5 days, it is back inside the house. Lots of work to move the plants back and forth, plus I'm waiting to step a dozen or more plants up to 3 gallon nursery pots. Cold weather comes in today and tomorrow. After that I'm going for it, moving the plants into the three gallon containers and planning on being able to keep plants out over night with maybe only one more episode of having to shuttle back and forth.

Next year I plan on having a much larger, permanent cold frame in place, so the plants can stay out overnight even down into the low 20's.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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applestar
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

Trying to remember ... Did you say before that you put a light bulb in the coldframe to guard against severe temp drop (like the low 20's you mentioned)? wattage?
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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hendi_alex
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

I put up to two bulbs in my portable cold frame, but don't really trust it down into the low 20's, so under about 32 degrees, those plants are brought in as well. Nightly lows are generally staying above the low 40's, but once every week to ten days, the temperatures are heading down to freezing or lower. After the freeze for the next couple of nights, the ten day forecast looks very promising. So with luck, maybe only one or two more dips into the danger zone.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

Oh yeah! I'm getting really tired of carting trays of plants in and out! Mine are back in also.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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gixxerific
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

Good luck to you alex. I have yet to begin the carting in and out. Been too cold here. I do have some earlies that are ready to go at any point though.

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hendi_alex
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

My plants go into the unheated cold frame any time the weather is sunny and over 50 degrees. The grow lights are a poor substitute for natural sunlight, so mine get a dose whenever it is available. On those cooler days, perhaps the incandescent light is placed inside the cold frame to help boost the temperature a bit.

If it is heated, I guess that a cold frame is no longer a cold frame. Perhaps a miniature greenhouse? Anyway, I expect great results from the south facing heated 'hot' frame that I'll construct next year. It will be about six feet long by four feet wide and will be about three feet tall. Three to four incandescent bulbs will be placed on a thermostat receptacle such that they light on demand, probably will set two at 70 degrees and another two at 40 degrees, to come on as a second stage if the first two bulbs are not getting the job done. In the coldest part of the winter, will likely set plants on large rectangular storage boxes filled with water. The water will absorb lots of heat during the day and will slowly release the heat in the evening, giving a constant source of gentle bottom heat during the nights. I'll provide photos of the project from start to finish.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

Great project! Do show us pictures when it is done. In the meantime, your water storage boxes will work better as thermal mass if painted black, so they absorb heat more. They make spray paint designed to adhere to plastic.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

lexusnexus
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

Amen, brother. High 20's and windy today. Still have a lot of snow cover from yesterday's blanketing. Mother nature is playing a cruel joke on us. I live in Maryland now, not Michigan. Enough already! :lol:
Dan - "Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends..." Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Karnevil #9

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applestar
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Re: Time for this weather to settle!

LOL my brother uses the command "settle!" with his big dogs to calm down and behave.

Every time I come across this thread, I have a vision if us looking up at the sky and sternly commanding the weather to "settle." :lol:
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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