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How To Make A Cold Frame From Pallets – 4 Easy Steps!

Our Best Guide To Making A Cold Frame With Pallets

Cold frames are an excellent DIY build for your garden, they can be used for protecting plants from the elements, sowing seeds and even growing seasonal crops. Best of all, cold frames can be made with some simple steps by using wooden pallets. 

To make a cold frame from pallets you will need wooden pallets, plywood, drill and a few other tools, you can use a window for the lid or polyurethane sheets will do, anything clear that protects the plants while letting light in.

So as we can explain the exact method for making a cold frame from pallets we’ve gone into further detail in our short guide below will explain the process. 

Why Make a Cold Frame? 

Adding a cold frame to your garden is a great way to keep crops warm throughout the seasons and acts as a mini-greenhouse without taking up too much space! You can grow vegetables, plant seeds and do many more with just a window frame acting as your light.

When making a cold frame we suggest following a few tips such as – 

  • Avoid filling the frame with too much soil – Leave some room at the top of your cold frame, this allows for plants to grow and keeps a good airflow.
  • Water often – Since your plants are not outside, they will need to be watered regularly on a schedule to grow. 
  • Fertilise well – To get the best growth from your cold frame ensure that you fertilise and mulch before planting.

We’ve listed some benefits to making a cold frame below. 

  • Extendable gardening seasons – Usual gardening seasons can be extended by 60 days by planting earlier in the spring season.
  • Veggies are protected – Frost, winds and the rain can’t get into a cold pallet due to their greenhouse-style lid.
  • Keeps pests away – As well as the elements, bugs and other kinds of insects can’t get inside a cold frame stopping damage to your plants.

Our Step By Step Guide To Making a Cold Frame From Pallets

As we mentioned above, making a cold frame is easy and can be done with a few wooden pallets and some scrap wood.

Making one of these plant holders can be overwhelming as a beginner so we’ve put together four simple steps to follow below to make your cold frame. 

Tools Needed

  • Pallets
  • Some scrap wood. 
  • Nails and screws. 
  • Electric Drill. 
  • Polythene sheet.
  • Wood preserve. 


  • Step one – To begin start by taking your four pallet boards and fixing them together with nails centrally to keep them together, for ease of making, make the long sides of the cold frame the same size as the boards at 110cm.
  • Step two – Next repeat this for the front side of your board using three boards instead and the sides, leave some room on the side pieces of the basic frame to allow for a slope in the pieces of wood. Use a hand saw to cut the slopes in the simple box frame.
  • Step three – To make a more heavy-duty frame take your electric drill and drill some pieces of scrap wood onto the corners to make it more durable. Take the measurements from the frame of the cold frame and cut your lid from a polythene sheet, cut three pieces of scrap wood to measure and staple the sheet to them.
  • Step four – Now hinge your lid on top and your cold frame is ready, you can always add polish of wood preserve if needed for a more finished look.

Last Words

Overall, making a cold frame from pallets is easily done with some scrap wood, electric nails and of course, wooden pallets on hand. You can use a window glass or a clean sheet for the top lid to keep the rain out and let light in. 

We recommend growing delicate herbs, broccoli and cauliflower, lettuce or scallions in your cold frame since they benefit well from the heat of a cold frame and are protected.

Scott Buckley

Scott Buckley

I'm Scott, a Woodworker by day and book geek by night. I love making things out of wood. While I have and still, on occassion do, work with metal and plastics, I find them to be cold and somewhat boring. Wood is warm and I feel close to nature with it. I started as a means to help like minded creative folk to answer burning questions. I hope you enjoy reading and learning, and always feel free to reach out to me should you have any questions!

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