How to Build a Cloche
A cloche (pronounced kl-osh) is a French word, meaning bell. Originally, cloches were made using glass and looked like bell jars (hence the name). They were designed to protect plants from harsh, cold temperatures to extend the growing lifespan, however the use of glass often meant that they would overheat too much and damage the plants inside.
With newer, more innovative building techniques introduced, the use of materials such as corrugated plastic proved to be much more effective in sheltering seedlings, keeping them warm and protecting them from final frosts.
Why Build a Cloche?
A cloche can provide valuable extra weeks of growing time at the beginning of spring and even at the end of autumn. They are a fantastic option for those who live in areas with colder, harsher weather conditions as not only does do they extend the growing season but cloches also helps to protect your plants from heavy rain and wind.
Corrugated Plastic Garden Cloches
Corrugated plastic garden cloches offer a highly effective and more convenient alternative to a greenhouse plus are ideal for smaller garden spaces. It is much easier to make a cloche from corrugated plastic than it is construct a cold frame whilst still providing many of the same benefits. They are easily moveable around the garden and provide an appropriate growing spot for more hardy vegetables.
To make a cloche from corrugated plastic, all you’ll need are some cloche hoops and corrugated plastic sheeting. You can locate the cloche hoops online or at any local garden centre but you’ll find superb deals on corrugated plastic sheets at Roofing Megastore.
Why Make a Cloche From Corrugated Plastic?
The reason that corrugated plastic garden cloches are more successful than other alternatives is due to the fact that they have fantastic light transparency, allowing up to three times the amount of light through as other kinds of sheet materials. Corrugated plastic sheets also offer superior durability with an impressive lifespan of up to 10 years.
Building a Cloche
Building a corrugated plastic garden cloche in your garden is easy. There is no need to create an elaborate structure to achieve high-quality results for your plants; simplicity is key. To make a cloche from corrugated plastic, you’ll need only minimal materials and no tools so the process is not only cost-effective but also very enjoyable, even if you are a novice gardener.
Materials You’ll Need
- One Vistalux PVC Clear Corrugated Sheet
- Cloche hoops for corrugated plastic
Step by Step Guide to Building a Corrugated Plastic Garden Cloche
- First, simply curve the corrugated plastic sheet over lengthways, creating a semi-circle shape above the ground where your seedlings will be planted.
- Then, slide the cloche hoops over the top of the sheeting and into the ground on both sides, holding the sheeting in place and forming a mini tunnel. You may need to trim the width of the corrugated sheet down a small amount if the cloche hoops are of a smaller size.
And there you have it, you now have your very own DIY corrugated plastic garden cloche! Whether you are an avid gardener looking to warm the soil and start the sowing season early or want to make sure your vegetables and plants make it through the cold, your brand new cloche will become a highly valued part of your garden.
Top Tip Time!
If you are on more of a budget or are just finding it hard to locate cloche hoops for corrugated plastic, you can also use string tied onto two pieces of garden cane instead.
Quick and easy, you simply loop the string around the plastic sheeting and push the canes into the ground to hold the sheeting firmly in place. Dependant on how long the corrugated sheet is, you will probably need three or four per cloche to ensure optimum hold.
Share Your Cloche Builds
Let us see your cloches! If you’ve made your own cloche or already have some plants thriving under one, share a picture on our Facebook page and inspire other DIYers.