My $2.00 Temporary Greenhouses

8 years ago
Last summer my husband made several raised beds for my garden. Instead of making the posts flush with the box, he extended them 1 -2 feet higher than the box, so I could attach chicken wire thus denying Peter, Benjamin, and friends their usual midnight snack. I enjoyed gardening last year, so I was anxious to start gardening again this year and jumped the gun! One week after moving my tender baby plants from the safety of my kitchen to the garden beds the temperatures dropped to the low 20's! I needed a quick solution if I was going to save my plants and didn't want to spend a fortune, otherwise the money I save gardening would be negated. As it happened I recently read a completely unrelated post on Dollars and Sense by J about "oops" paint. I decided to follow through with my plan to go to Home Depot and look for some "oops" paint and see if I could come up with a solution for my garden while I was there. After scoring a quart of sage green paint for $1.00, I wandered over to look for drop cloths. I found a package of 6 - 1 mil drop cloths for $2.10 ( I could buy 1 drop cloth for $2.97 or 6 for $2.10 ?) and that is when I formulated my brilliant plan: Temporary Greenhouses! The elevated posts and chicken wire would prevent the plastic drop cloths from laying right on top of the plants. I had about 20 empty milk jugs that I was saving to make cloches, but I had more than 20 plants (how to decide which to save?) and fortunately I had not yet cut the bottoms off of the jugs. I placed one drop cloth over the shorter box and two over the taller box. Then I filled the milk jugs with water, leaving room at the top for the water to expand when it froze, and placed the jugs on top of the excess cloth to weigh it down. I only used 3 of the drop cloths, so I still have 3 left to use on my painting project. One tomato plant might not make it, but everything else is thriving!
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