Greens Under Glass

We’ve been harvesting salad greens from the cold frame I built earlier this year.  I talk about the building of the cold frame here.

I seeded the frame about a month ago with a mix of mustard, spinach, arugula, several Asian greens and some lettuces.  As the picture shows, germination was excellent.

Until now, when we are finally getting some very cool nights, the main issue has been to remember to open up the glass lid totally during the day.  The daytime temperatures under the glass easily climbed to over 100 degrees F on sunny days, even with outside temperatures in the 60’s.  With the lid propped open but still above the frame, the temperatures got really hot, so I’ve been opening the frame totally during the day and leaving it open about an inch during the night.

Now that we are approaching freezing temperatures at night, I’m closing the frame totally each evening.  So far, the greens are beautiful and my salad mix rivals the best high priced mixes we see in the markets.

As the greens are really thick in the frame, I’ve found the easiest harvesting method is to snip off the entire plant with kitchen scissors just where the stem is coming out of the ground.  I just look for the greens that are the tallest, grab a leaf to get some tension on the plant and cut it off.

Here’s a picture of a salad made with greens, shredded yellow and orange carrots and sliced red onions.  Dressed with a garlicky balsamic dressing, it is delicious.  If all goes as hoped for, we’ll be eating salads like this with our cold frame greens well into December.


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