UPDATE my cloche experiment

Asheville, NC

So far I have not had any apparent damage to the makeshift cloches I have put out. In case you missed my first posts about this, I'm trying them out for IN SITU wintersowing as well as using the cloches as protection for individual plants already started (Myosotis only, so far).

The weather has been extreme for our locale. The cloches, which are actually cheap crafters' glass lampshades---very thick and small--are still intact.

Thumbnail by ooneek
Asheville, NC

....and here's a photo of a fall sown myosotis "sous cloche".

Thumbnail by ooneek
Grayslake, IL(Zone 5a)

Those look like they would be great for in situ sowing in spring to keep the critters off my sunflowers and such until they're big enough not to be bunny food. I was going to use cut off 2 liter bottles but this may be better, more air circulation.

edit: are these at Joann's and/or Michaels?

This message was edited Jan 13, 2010 1:55 PM

Jackson, MO(Zone 6b)

neat idea, keep us posted.

Billerica, MA(Zone 6a)

I saw your original post and thought it was a great idea then. Pest pertection and greenhouse climate for plants that need it the most. I've done similar in the past with the cut-off half of water bottles but besides being ugly, they were easily disturbed. Might be something similar out there in a heavy plastic. Would not cost as much if one wanted to purchase in quantity.

Asheville, NC

I bought the little glass lampshades online from national art craft, but on a recent visit back to that site I could not find this product. I bought a case, so maybe I cleaned them out.

I haven't looked for them at any brick and mortar stores, but I think it would be worth a trip.

Billerica, MA(Zone 6a)

Well, I've shopped around a little bit cause I'm interested in trying this out, and come up with one source with something similar. Their name is CSN Stores. I found them on ebay but they may have their own website also. Coincidently, for me, they're from Boston. Anyway, the picture posted is one of a few different styles they have at varying prices. Very reasonably priced, at least compared to other sellers on ebay, and the listing says you can buy up to 5, although my guess is they are well stocked but only list 5 at a time. One can always inquire if interested in more. The cost (on ebay) for each of this style is $2.64 with a flat rate s&h of $5.95 (1 to 5 pieces). That comes to about $4.00 each if you buy 5. They had some styles even cheaper. Their ebay username is csnstores. I will definitely keep them in mind but I want to shop the thrift stores and HD/Lowe's first. Just wanted to let others know in case anyone's interested.

Edited to correct the spelling of the company's name.

This message was edited Jan 17, 2010 7:00 PM

Thumbnail by rockgardner
Asheville, NC

The ones I use are of absolutely clear glass and they cost between 1 and 2 dollars apiece. Do you think frosted glass would be better? I suppose it might be better when the weather warms and the sun is more intense.

Billerica, MA(Zone 6a)

I didn't realize yours were so inexpensive. The frosted glass may be more benificial I would think. I know commercial glass greenhouses are sprayed with a water based whitewash at some point but otherwise when the weather warms up the shades may not even be needed, unless it's for protection from an isolated frost or from wildlife in general. It'll be an individual judgement call depending on your environment. I guess I'll just keep looking around for a better deal as I really would like a dozen or more. btw, you can always whitewash your clear glass if you felt it would help.

Jackson, MO(Zone 6b)

rockgardener, if you could fine the physical store of csn wouldn't your think you could get them even cheaper? Yard sales and thrift stores are good places to look also.
What are the approximate dimensions of these "little" lamp shades?
If the leaves touch the side of the glass, and it's freezing temps, wouldn't the leaves turn to mush??

Cincinnati, OH(Zone 6a)

I don't see those little things being a deterrent for squirrels. Seems to me they'd just throw it off. Robbits, maybe, but not squirrels. Seems a pop bottle might be better, you could dig it down into the soil. No?


Grayslake, IL(Zone 5a)

I'm eyeballing empty peanut butter and mayonnaise jars. The rim might make it easier to dig into the dirt than a cut 2 liter, and I could probably poke or drill holes. These (the shades) I was thinking would be good to keep the rabbits off my sunflowers until they're not as tasty.

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

Great idea! I was thinking about using some of the milk jugs and putting a stick in it to keep it in place. I wanted to try w/sing some directly so I won't have to transplant later.

Billerica, MA(Zone 6a)

Well, just got hit with another major storm, almost 12" of the heavy wet slushy stuff (unflavored). I used to eat it when I was a kid, just added my favorite syrup... and I grew up in the city. But that was then (late 50's-early 60's). The good news, my small, cheap greenhouse held up nicely to the nearly worst case scenario that mother nature could give.

birder... it's in my idea list to try to find the actual physical store, if it exists. Could get a good deal, they may even have seconds. And I'm very excited about checking out the thrift stores, there's so many around hear, nearly one on every block. They're more common then Dunking Donuts! (I think that may be a NE thing). And of course, the yard sale season is just around the corner, the same corner where I'll find spring.

I dont remember the actual dimensions but judging from the pic I would guess about the same as ooneek's or about 2" top, 6" bottom, and a height of about 4". They don't look to be as heavy as ooneek's but should be heavy enough so not to be easily disturbed by winds. birder... you bring up a good point about the leaves touching the glass, I believe you would be correct, so there may have to be some discretion as to what plants to use them with. Seems like a great way to start sedums.

Karen... as far as being disturbed by critters, I guess I'll have to wait and see, could always stake them down I suppose. I used to use similar items to "pop" bottles (we call it "soda" around here) soda bottles are redeemable in MA and other NE states, and are worth 5 cents each. None of the assortment of light plastic bottles (and I do dig them deep) have worked effectively. This is part of the reason I like the idea of glass, even if I have to stake them down a bit.

grrrlgeek... a quart size heavy plastic jar, mayonnaise or otherwise sounds like a great idea, I will definitely experiment with one of those too. It may turn out to be a combination of things. I know I'm tired of losing so many plants to wildlife and bugs and such. I love all these ideas.

Lynn... I tried the milk/water containers last year with sticks for support but it didn't work for me. They were constantly being knocked over, sometimes uprooting the plants. Unfortunately (and fortunately), I have the biggest lot in the neighborhood, more than twice as big as any other lot within a 4 block area, and the only one with real "woods", not to include the variety of plants and gardens I keep, so I get the brunt of the wildlife activity on my property. Love it... but it has it's problems.

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

Thanks for the info, you saved me a lot of grief. We are on 5 acres, lots of wildlife here.

Easton, PA(Zone 6b)

I use soda bottles with the tops and bottoms cut off (so they are tubes) to protect sunflower seedlings.

I had soda bottle tops (cheap cloches) over a couple of seedlings this spring. The little girl next door said they were fairy houses. I thought that was cute.

Wells, TX(Zone 8b)

check good will or other resale shops like The Habitat Restores stores for the glass lampshades Ive gotten them for as low as 25 cents ea...

Milford, CT(Zone 6a)

so.. how are they moving along.. did you get the recent snow dump?

we are at our seed starting time (spring crops started by feb 13.)
i am interested in attampting something similar for broccoli and cabbages.

Jackson, MO(Zone 6b)

One more thought: When I start winter sowing, I go to the local re-cycle center. There are all kinds of plastic bottles all sizes. I don't save too many jars etc. as I can always go there and get some.

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