Cold Frame Cropping

Cold Frame Cropping
ENTRY DATE: 16 April 2015| LAST UPDATE: 16 April 2015
Categories: Agriculture | Cropping techniques
Technological Maturity: Applicable immediately
Technology Owners:
  • CARE
  • Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
  • Technology users/farmers
Needs Addressed
  • Stabilised and/or increased productivity
  • Food security 
Adaptation Effects
  • Allow earlier seeding of plants
  • Ensures continuous production of key crops despite extreme weather events
  • Food security during winter season
Overview and Features

Wood and glass frames that act as small greenhouses and are used to grow the following crops/seedlings: parsley, basilica, green onion, radish, carrot, pepper, tomato, cucumber, strawberry, cabbage, turnip and seeds of native trees

  • Equipment - wood, glass and screws as well as seedbeds and watering, total cost USD 90 per cold frame
  • Labour
  • Training
Energy Source
  • Solar
  • In the future, solar panels could help heating the cold frames and at the same time provide domestic heat
Ease of Maintenance

Frames may need replacing from time to time

Technology Performance
  • Shelter seedlings from inclement weather, thereby helping community members to grow seedlings earlier in the spring and increase the growing season
  • Allows successful growth of cold-hardy vegetables all year round, achieving up to four harvests per year
Considerations (technology transfer criteria, challenges, etc.)
  • Training must be provided to new users
  • Cultural acceptability must be considered
Co-benefits, Suitability for Developing Countries
  • Higher income from farming
  • Partnership with local government increases sustainability
  • Benefits from an understanding of local dynamics, in particular the socioeconomic issues that influence vulnerability and people’s ability to adapt
  • Suitable coping strategy because they are easy to manage and require minimum resources and effort
Information Resources

UNFCCC, 2008. Increased Growing Season in Central Tajikistan Through Cold Frames. CARE Tajikistan. UNFCCC database on local coping strategies. Available from: [20 November 2014]