Building A Manure Hotbed To Extend The Growing Season

A wheelbarrow full of manure sits with a pitchfork leaning against it

Many gardeners are familiar with a cold frame, but what about a hot bed? It is the same thing basically but is heated in some way. Often, thin electric cables line the base of the box; however, it is also possible to make a manure heating system for the unit. The heat from manure as it ages is enough to increase the temperature of the frame, encouraging growth and protecting tender plants from low nightly temperatures. A manure heated greenhouse or frame is a sustainable solution to keep plants warm and extend the growing season. There are many ways to keep plants protected from cold, but to actively encourage growth they need consistent warmth. The soil that contacts roots should ideally be around 60 degrees F. (16 C.) for good growth in most plant varieties. Using manure to heat a greenhouse or garden frame is an inexpensive and easy way […]

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