Hello everyone, welcome to the first greenhouse update for the greenhouse in 2015. What I am writing here will be complimentary to the video I made and posted above. It will give some extra information on a few things I wanted to go into more about on the video, but because I never remember to actually script out my videos beforehand I forgot to mention.
Feel free to watch the video then read the rest of this, or just pause and read the sections that have more information as you go along, I will make sure to bold the names of each section as I write about them.
The New Floor I will touch on this more in another post, but all I have done is removed the tarp, placed down cardboard, landscape plastic, and then loaded in some bags of wood chips. So far it is working great, except for when I spill soil onto the wood chips, it’s a real pain to get it out, as you could see in the video.
Onions There isn’t much to say about these onions so far, other than I put them in the greenhouse to see how they would do compared to the ones outside and that each of the plants is larger than the ones in the outside bed that germinated at relatively the same time.
Topsy Turvy I bought two of these from Canadian Tire for about $3 each this winter, I wasn’t planning on using them this year until I had extra bare root strawberries left over from the new strawberry bed I planted. I don’t think I would do bare roots in one again, I just found it much too annoying to get them planted to the right depth, plus without the bigger root ball of transplants blocking the hole, some of the water leaks out of some of the holes sometimes. I will also be moving it outside as soon as I make a bracket for it.
The Poor Plants that Cooked Under the Extra Cover The plants that were in the mini-greenhouse inside the regular greenhouse included a lot more than just the two basil and the mystery tomato. There were a number of plants that I had started to grow, but just didn’t have a space for growing in there with them; I lost another two tomatoes, at least two lemon balm, and another basil. I probably wouldn’t have used all of them myself, but I could have given some away had the heat not cooked them in their pots.
The Power Bar I bought it, as I said in the video, for about $10 at Canadian Tire during the big clearance sale they had last winter. I think those ones are normally around $40, so it was a great deal I couldn’t pass up. I don’t like where it’s sitting, especially with all of the leaks the greenhouse has at the moment, but soon I will be building a box for it to make sure it is kept dry and safe.
Peat Pellets I know a lot of people love those little peat pellets, but I am not one of them. A lot of times I don’t have time to transplant, or have the materials needed at a moments notice when I am transplanting my seedlings, and with those peat pellets, leaving the plants even just a little too long ends up ripping off a lot more of the roots than I intended. This is fine for some plants, but for a lot of others, it can mean disaster.
Heat Sinks and the Fountain I have still yet to calculate the volume of air that is inside the greenhouse, so I don’t know exactly how many gallons of water I need for a good heat sink. What I do know however is that two five gallon buckets, four four litre milk jugs and three one litre pop bottles is nowhere near the number that I am looking for. Every night it cools off just as much inside the greenhouse as it does outside.
Fly Strip and Solar Bug Zapper The fly strip came about after I was being eaten alive by mosquitoes at the start of this year and I noticed a bunch of “aphids” in there as well. Though they were probably fruit flies, or white flies or something, all I know is that they had to go. The strip has worked pretty well, taking care of a lot of the little “aphids” and mosquitoes, along with flies. I will take it down pretty soon and won’t be replacing it.
The solar bug zapper may have only been shown for a moment in the video, if at all, but it has taken care of tons of mosquitoes in the middle of the night, as I have seen it flickering many times. I think the ants then eat the remains, because in the mornings, there are never any dead mosquitoes around the bottom of it, like there is near the one we have outside.
The Door As the annotation said, I still have need of opening the door to vent the greenhouse from time to time. The problem with that is that the frame isn’t very strong, so the wind can actually bend the door. This in turn would start to work the nails out of the brackets on the corners, and I was constantly worried that the door would break apart one day, and I had to keep hammering the nails back into place. The screws are doing a much better job of keeping it more rigid.
That isn’t the only fix I have planned for the door however. Soon I will be adding two windows to it, and a “kick plate” at the bottom which will not only help to keep me from putting my foot through the plastic one day (it’s coming) but will also help to add some strength to the bottom of the door.
The Leaks If only it was the leeks, but I didn’t plant any of those this year. No, I’m talking about the water rushing through the holes in the roof left by the hail last year, believe it or not, I have already fixed a number of holes this year (you can tell by looking at the lack of water on the shelf) with some good tape I purchased in the fall when I accidentally put a drill bit through the plastic on the door. It works great, and seems to handle the rain just fine, I just have to get out there and find the rest of the holes one of these days.
The Raised Bed I know, I know, it’s made of treated lumber. I did some research on it, and found out that they coat it differently now than what they used to, and that it is safe for use around edibles. Ideally I would have sprung for cedar, so that it would match the floor, but if I had cedar money, the whole greenhouse would have been made out of it. The bottom line is that I feel perfectly safe using treated lumber, so I used it, if you don’t feel the same way, then don’t use it in your garden.
Phew, an eight minute video AND a long, rambling post? I have either given up on short things that won’t take you guys long to get through, or I have finally made my way into full insanity… Either way, what is done is done!