Homemade cloches for gardens

Written by meg butler
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Homemade cloches for gardens
An empty milk container makes an ideal garden cloche. (Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images)

The garden cloche originally was a French invention. These glass bell jars, when placed over plants in early spring, protected them from late and sudden frost. Since their invention, cloches have been readily employed by gardeners eager to extend the growing season. And cloches no longer are restricted to glass. Paper, fibreglass and plastic are used to create these jars. Make your own cloches by recycling plastic gallon milk containers. Their removable caps allow you to vent heat during the day and provide insulation at night.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Plastic gallon milk jug with cap
  • Bleach
  • Water
  • Knife

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  1. 1

    Add 2 tbsp bleach to an empty milk jug.

  2. 2

    Fill the milk jug halfway with warm water.

  3. 3

    Place the cap on the jug and shake it vigorously for 10 seconds.

  4. 4

    Pour the bleach solution out of the jug.

  5. 5

    Rinse the milk jug with water three times.

  6. 6

    Cut off the bottom of the milk jug. Lay it on its side on a cutting board. Use a large, serrated knife to cut off the very bottom.

  7. 7

    Brush off any shredded plastic and discard the bottom.

  8. 8

    Place the open bottom of the milk container over the plant so that the plant is in the centre of the jug. Press the container down so that it sits securely in the soil.

  9. 9

    Take the cap off to allow warm air to escape during the day. Replace it before the sun goes down to keep the plant insulated at night.

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