I use 2 heaters. One Little Buddy Mr. Heater (propane) http://www.mrheater.com/product.aspx?catid=41&id=24 and one Caframo True North http://www.caframo.com/hearth/hearth_products_acspaceheaters.php electric heat. I have a 30 lbs propane tank outside the GH with a hose running to the heater. I need the combination for our climate. Last year we had several days with high temps of -25ºC (-13ºF) and night lows of -30ºC (-22ºF). I also have a small fan up high for heat/air circulation It is difficult to control the heatloss with those temperatures. On extreme cold nights I cover the GH with bedspreads. Your panel materials, & outside "low temperatures are vital in determining the size (BTU) of heater that you will require.
Bubblewrap: I called a few shipping supply wholesalers and bought a 250' roll of 1" bubbles for $44. I cut it to fit the panels and used shipping tape to attach it to the GH. Bubbles facing the panels. I reused the BW from last year.
Yes, they are. I usually buy pelleted seeds so they are easier to sow. surface sow and provide bottom heat until they germinate. As soon as they germinate remove the clear domes. water with warm water and use chamomile tea to prevent damping off. I posted some info this morning regarding planting petunias in containers here: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1072169/
Robin, get your petunias started right away for blooms by mid to late May. I use the little peat circles that you add water to for starting them, then move to larger pots as the roots start to show around the edges.
Just me, but I don't like those peat jiffy pellet things with the mesh. It's much better to start them in a seed tray with seed starting soil mix. Those mesh things really restrict the roots. Once planted in a container arrangement, guaranteed that the soil will settle & that darn mesh will be sticking out above the soil line and it will wick the moisture away from the roots. I have found during fall cleanup that all the plants that were started in those mesh things had a puny root system and the plant never really grew that well. Yes now is about the time to start petunias, but the Tidal Waves I start in Mid March. They bolt fast and will need to be in 6" pots at the end of April.
Joanna, thanks for the new thread. And that greenhouse is fantastic. I had been looking at the costco one, but had no idea is was so sturdy looking. Can't really tell from their ads. Your petunias are beautiful. I may have to start some with my tomatoes next week. Really great info on your other thread.
I started my patunias in cell pks, with the heat under and the dome on top.
They came up and when I cracked the top to let some air in and checked them the next morning they were all lying down flat. That was an expensive oopppsss.
What did I do wrong?
I just love patunias and buy them evey year. looks like I will be buying them again this year.
Sounds like a fungal disease Damping Off. Petunias are susceptible to it. As soon as they germinate, you should remove the dome. There are chemical that you can add too the water to prevent damping off, but an easy alternative is top water or mist with a strong brew (room temp) of chamomile tea. Do this until the seedlings develop their true set of leaves
I would try warming them up a little bit - I know you should grow them on at a lower temp, but just to start out, they might like it a bit warmer. And the only time I raised them it was in a Southern window - how long are you leaving your lights on?
Joanna? Save this poor girl before I lead her astray, lol...
I have a small fan and will put that in the room. I don't want the fan facing the seedlings do I ?
Thanks for helping me out as you can see by the picture I needed it LOL
this is my heater I am going to use in GH 20 thousand BTUs I tried to look at how many BTUs the buddy was and couldn't find it.
How long does your tank last? I have a thiry gallon tank and I am not sure how long they last.
I have a small electric heater that came with my GH but I have no electic hooked up yet so I will have to rely on propane. It says it does not have to be vented on my box, do you vent yours?
I am hoping to get the bubble wrap up and the GH going in a couple of weeks.
I have my lights on for 15 hours, 6AM until 9PM. You either need to lower the light to 2 inches above the plants or raise the tray so that the plants are about 2" from the light. Yes blow the fan at the seedlings, just like the wind outside. I like to use an oscillating fan and start out on low 'cause your seedlings are a bit stretched.
Since your heater has a pilot light, you will need to provide fresh air for the low oxygen sensor. So if you are not running a fan, then the easiest thing would be to run a 2 inch pipe thru the GH wall with a elbow and leave the inside end open-ended near your heater to provide continuous fresh air. Other wise your heater will go out in the middle of the night.
This pipe thing would be similar to a combustion pot in your house for a gas furnace. I will find the other thread that I posted pictures of what I mean.
Yup, that's me. Had the swing set GH in 2007, then I got the 6'X8' for 2008 which was too small. Now I have an 8'X12' - 2009
there are a few threads on my dealings with extreme cold temps with the GH (bubble wrap) and heating trial. This year everything has been great since a lot of trial & error has taken place in past years.
I have to get the bubble wrap - we're still below freezing every night and I have tomato and pepper starts that are dying for some sunshine - not quite literally, but close! But they're looking kind of rough.
In the 8'X12' GH : With a little circulation fan up high blowing at a downward angle, and the little 3000 BTU electric heat & 5000 BTU (low settings) propane heat, the night temp is about 15.5ºC, which is 60ºF ( outdoor ambient temperature is -6ºC, which is 21ºF). This is with the bubble wrap. Without the bubble wrap, it would probably be about 8ºC or 46ºF
JoannaBanana said: "...then I got the 6'X8' for 2008 which was too small. Now I have an 8'X12' - 2009".
What are you gonna do next? Because I seem to be following in your footsteps (just a year slow), and I'd rather skip a mistake and save some $$$ if you have a new theory/idea in the works that you're gonna share! LOL
Other than always planting too much, this is the biggest GH that will fit in this yard. The GH was equipped with 2 roof vents, one with an auto roof vent opener and also a fresh air vent. !6 feet of shelving. Added extra shelves that are actually a mini GH
I think I have it set up pretty good, propane heater with a hose that runs under the GH and hooked up to a 30 LBS tank outside for easy tank swap.
Now with the electricity to the GH , a temperature controlled electric heater/fan with different heat & fan speeds. The heater is designed for the boat industry so it can take a splash of water. An overhead electric fan for heat & air circulation.
Bubble wrap for insulation. 4" of small smooth gravel base, heavy duty landscape fabric under that. Pressure treated wood base frame and 4 heavy duty anchors that are made for big tent style car ports.
There are two more things that I'm considering. I cram everything in, so not a whole lot of extra space. Once it is warm enough, I have going to run a water hose under the frame of the GH and hook a little spiral hose for inside watering. I would just click connect the main yard water hose to the feeder hose into the GH. Until then, I just had water out of 5-gallon pails
The other thing I am considering is a few planting boxes call maxicaps. I will find the link and post. These would be for tomatoes & cucumbers & peppers that will remain in the GH thru the summer.
I was thinking about this thread while DH and I were building our greenhouse this spring. I couldn't get the double wall polycarbonate panels that I wanted for the roof (the shipping was more than the panels cost.) I bought corrugated polycarbonate panels and added a layer of bubble wrap between them. That way they won't get damaged or dirty.
Joanna, I'm wondering if I could put two big white buckets with holes in the bottom in a low plastic bin I have for the same effect. Sometimes I'm not able to get out to water, it would be a great help if it worked.
Podster, thank you, thank you! I've been trying to think of a way to use all my buckets in the winter. Gymgirl's solution is so much better than anything I came up with, I'll be hitting the dollar store tomorrow. I'm rooting cuttings of my tomato plants already, so I can get them in the buckets next week. Our night temps are starting to drop.
Thanks for all this information. I just finished doing the north wall w/ the small bubbles (it was 1/2 the cost of the large) and I will be doing the remaining walls w/ the 1/2" bubbles this weekend. After that I am going to use window shrink wrap over the top. It is crystal clear so I am not too concerned about the amount of sun that will come in. I thought about using the reflective bubble wrap on the north wall, but decided not to do it this year. Has anyone tried that?
joannabanana wrote:I found the perfect shelves to add to the far end of the greenhouse. It's actually a mini greenhouse and was on sale for $25. I bought 2 and they fit great. Whole bunch more space for plants.
These dont last long, the plastic joins snap. Hope your plants aren't on them when they do. I had to get my partner (who welds) to weld me up some to repace the ones i got from ebay the same as yours.
Question from a dummy. When you say 1" bubble wrap, do you mean the bubbles are 1"wide or that the sheet of wrap is 1" think. When I search all I can find is wrap discribed as 1/2". I'd like to find 1" bubbles in a sheet that is 24" wide. Any advice?
You aren't a dummy, you can't learn if you don't ask a question. I have a mix of small bubbles and large bubbles, because I couldn't find the large in any quantity. One inch is the size of the bubble, they take up a 1x1 inch space. 1/2" would be smaller bubbles.
Do you have to worry about scorching the plants when you take the bubble wrap off. I just removed the wrap from the south roof and 1/2 the walls when it occurred to me that the plants have not had such strong light yet. I have yet to start hardening the plants off since we cannot plant out until the 2nd week of May.
Will taking the wrap off make it easier to harden them off? Do they need to be hardened off?
onyxwar, I leave my bobble wrap up year round, I think it gives me a little insulation in the summer.
I don't think they will suffer, but I have killed many a healthy plant...
I'm a zone warmer that you and have my pea transplants out and need to get more cold weather plants in the ground.
Last fall I picked up a lot of 2x wood and so I have placed them in my garden, 20'x30' as walk paths.
I cutting in lots of leaves and coffee grounds from Starbucks as well as my rabbit poo that's been collecting over the winter.
Hope you have a great garden this year...Dwight
I did check on the toms tonight and found that many of them got burnt. I have planted some for me and many for other people and I am kind of sad that I will be giving out burnt looking plants, but I know they will get over it and do well.
I moved all the toms to the other side of the gh so they the sun does not hit them so hard.
Finally got the bubble wrap purchased and installed. So far I'm very happy with the increase in the overnight temps. I run supplimental electric heat at night and keep a fan running 24/7. We're having endless dreary days but everything is still growing nicely and not getting leggy. Daytime temps get quite warm so the heat goes off. My one concern is the condensation that drips down onto the wood framing. The next warm day I'll try to air it out good. So far I'm glad I made the investment! I appreciate all the great ideas here!