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Hotbeds image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

There is do mystery about a hol bed, yet farmers, and many othcrs. do without tliis oonvenience, from some supposed difficulty in luaking and caring tor it. Sashes, a few boards and somc horse manurc are the materiala required. Regular hotbed salic are 3 by 6 fcet, and niay be bought ready glazed at the sash and blind factories ; old window-sashes will answer as a make-shitt, but are far less convenient. Select a place sheltered by a building or fence froui cold winds ; dig a pit 2J f eet deep, as widc as tbe sashcN are loag, and as long aa the number of sashes to be sed require. Line this pit with rough boards nailed to posta driven dowu in the corners. The rear board should extend a loit above the surfa -e, and the front one 4 above. The froutcr lower ide should face the soutli. Nail strips from front to rear, for the sashes to slide upon. Put in the bottoui of the pit a layer of six inches of leaves, or oorn litter ; then put on stable iuanure, which should have been turned once or twice, to bring it to a state of uniform heat. Put on the tnanure evenly, 'and tramp t down ; the manure shouM oome to within six inches of the top of the pit ; upon thi is to be placed six iuches of tine light soil, and the i-eeds sowu in that, or preferably, put on two inches or so of couimon earth on which to set the boxesin which the seeds are sown. Put on the sashes, and when the manure begins to heat, test it with a thermometer ; when the heat is deolining (rom 100, seeds my be sown iu the soil, or the boxes in which they have been already gown should be placed in upon the surfaoe of the hotbed. Whpn the planta are up, give them air every day by lifting the sashe8 at the rear, not foretting to shut down the saches at iiight ; give water as needed. Boxes in windows is an excellent way of etarting plants for early setting, though it must necessarily be on a small scale. For a small garden a good supply may thus be procured. In sowing the seeds avoid putting them in too deep - a half inch is ampie for all, and a les-i depth is better for the small seeds. Press the soil olosely around the seeds.