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hardening off in between potting and planting outside. What does it mean?

(11 Posts)
afriendcalledfive Tue 18-Mar-14 18:41:47

Hi there, happy gardeners smile

I've noticed it says some plants need hardening off after potting (I think) and before planting out in the garden. Sorry if I sound thick, but what exactly does it mean? What do I do when I get to this bit?

Thinking of growing tomato plants and stuff and want to get to grips with terminology.

Please help

Gooner123 Tue 18-Mar-14 18:53:36

Hardening off is when you take young plants from a warm glasshouse and transfer to a covered cold frame,aired during the day & covered at night,with fleece if frosty,this prepares the plant so isn't in shock when eventually placed outside,it's mainly done with bedding plants.

afriendcalledfive Tue 18-Mar-14 19:12:23

Ah, so I need a cold frame...popped one on my list.

Is there any on the market that are good but not too big or expensive?

And I'm growing bedding plants too, so it will come in handy for that.

Thanks, gooner smile

Gooner123 Tue 18-Mar-14 19:39:35

TBH most peeps do without them,I'm taking it you've got a glass house ?,has it got heat ? You can use it to do much the same job by venting. & heating off,fleece off etc.But if your really serious then go for one,although I would rather a poly tunnel any day.
My local DIY store used to sell aluminum frames,quite small,so they are about.

Gooner123 Tue 18-Mar-14 19:43:12

This sort of thing might suit you,but if your handy with a hammer & saw,I bet you could knock one out in an afternoon.
http://www.all4gardening.co.uk/ScProductDetail/_Cold-Frames/Complete-Triple-Wooden-Cold-Frame-Planter_1820.aspx

Gooner123 Tue 18-Mar-14 19:44:15

Damn link won't work,try again
http://www.all4gardening.co.uk/ScProductDetail/_Cold-Frames/Complete-Triple-Wooden-Cold-Frame-Planter_1820.aspx

afriendcalledfive Tue 18-Mar-14 20:24:16

I'll copy and paste the link, thanks, but will probably buy one, too clumsy to build anything smile

At the moment my seedlings for the bedding plants are growing in propagators in the back bedroom on the windowsill. Nice and warm in there, and the sun is on the room most of the day.

Can't wait to get cracking.

Pannacotta Tue 18-Mar-14 20:28:48

You could use an unheated but light shed/garage as an alternative to a cold frame or just wait until risk of frost has passed but this is a while away....

afriendcalledfive Tue 18-Mar-14 21:47:34

Pannacotta, cheers, looks like I've saved myself a few quid there, grin

Dh has said he'll build me some shelves across the window of the shed, so all sortedsmile thanks for your replies thanks thanks

OhYouBadBadKitten Tue 18-Mar-14 21:48:50

Take care some potentially frosty nights coming up into next week even in the south.

afriendcalledfive Tue 18-Mar-14 22:42:47

Thanks ohyou, very useful info, nothings ready for hardening off just yet. Think I've got about 2 weeks before ready for potting .

Going to get things sorted very soon, though, before dh changes his mind grin

Thanks again smile

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