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Can we tour your greenhouse?

Gainesville, FL

I thought it might be cool to start a thread that would allow us to 'tour' each others' greenhouses. I find this helpful sometimes for getting new ideas for things to do as new projects in mine. Sometimes when you see what other people do it gives you ideas. Size does not matter. Purpose does not matter. After all, this is to share new ideas.

So I'd like to start by giving a small history of my greenhouse and how it came to be in my possession, LOL.

I started collecting plants in California in the late 1980's and early 1990's. I had a lot of cool cacti, succulents, etc and some tropicals. I had tropical water lilies and cool things. But we had to leave it all behind, mostly, when we moved to FL in 1992. I was able to bring a few things, but mostly had to restart 'collecting' when I got here. I ditched cacti and succulents and started collecting tropical plants, mainly heliconias and tropical gingers, bromeliad, plumerias and orchids. I met a friend who has a 2000 sq ft greenhouse and we shared many plants. I started going to trades and to sales at gardens and collected even more.

It started to get a bit 'cramped' in the house especially in winter when I had to drag everyone in the house. We decided to move from the house we had in town to outside the city limits in December 2001. By that time I had a HUGE collection of all kinds of tropical plants. We had the plans for the present greenhouse all done and in the works before we ever got to the house. Construction started almost immediately in March 2002. My friend helped me move all my collection over. We had a UHaul truck and it took all day and 5 packed loads to bring everything over. After the greenhouse was finished I planted most all of my things inside of it, into the ground.

The greenhouse has undergone a lot of changes over the years. My focus has moved away from heliconias (I had over 40 different specimens) and gingers to palms, orchids, hoyas, and all types of aroids. But I also have ferns, calatheas, tropical vines, begonias and many other things.

March/April is the time when I 'open' the greenhouse every year. Starting tomorrow I will be taking out all the 'winter boarders' and repotting them, fertilizing them, and setting them into the yard in their various places to serve as accent plants for what is planted outside. I will also be dividing plants in the greenhouse to trade and to plant out as annuals, cleaning up and grooming everything, fertilizing, etc. I also take a new set of photos every year to see how things have grown.

Here are a few photos from today. First, I'd like to introduce myself. Many people are scared to put their photos on the web, But gee whiz, this is a GARDEN site. I don;t think its dangerous. So this is me.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Gainesville, FL

Here is a photo of what you see as soon as you open the sliding door on the side of the greenhouse...the Strongolydon macrobotrys (Emerald Creeper; Green Jade Vine) is in bloom and its blooming PROFUSELY.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Gainesville, FL

When you step in, you can look across the way, through the Jade Vines, the Epipremnums and hoyas that drape down, and see a palm called Salacca magnifica. This is a huge 'entire leaf' palm that currently has fronds about 10 ft long. At maturity, the fronds will reach 20 ft in length. The palm in front of that is a Licuala grandis

This message was edited Mar 29, 2009 6:39 PM

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Gainesville, FL

If you were to go in the door and turn left, you would see a rather rare palm called Dypsis pembana, or Pemba Palm. Its a graceful and lovely pinnate (feather) palm.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Gainesville, FL

So, that's the start of the tour. Please, let's tour YOUR greenhouse. Please feel free to add to this thread.

North Augusta, ON

OMG!! How big is that greenhouse? It's like a beautiful jungle in there...

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

Oh gosh. You've got to do a link on the Tropical Plants, they will just...die!


Christi

Gainesville, FL

I don't know how to do that, Christi. Threegardens, its a little over 1700 sq ft

Let's say you go in the door and pass the Pemba palm. Then you would see this...a Ruffle Palm about 8 ft tall. There are some hanging plants around it, this time of year, the yellow nobile dendrobium just happens to be in full bloom. This palm grows beside a 20 ft stream

Thumbnail by gothqueen
St. Louis County, MO(Zone 5a)

LOL, that is bigger than my house.

Gainesville, FL

Here's a close up of the orchids, I don;t have its name (anymore) but its one of my favorite specimen plants, I've had it for years. The vine with the roundish leaves that is going haywire everywhere is a Hoya obovata. The Philodendron climbing the wall to the left is one of my younger specimens of the one called Philodendron "imbe" variegated. I don't believe that's its correct name.

This message was edited Mar 29, 2009 8:23 PM

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

I'm going to try queen.

Fulton, MO

Here is mine, as long as I have the old external hard drive out and running...

Thumbnail by stressbaby
Gainesville, FL

please take us inside!

Fulton, MO

DG really didn't like that last picture... we'll try again with this one.

Thumbnail by stressbaby
Fulton, MO

The last pic containes Musa DC, Passionfruit, Satsuma and other citrus, papaya, lychee, breynia.

My real interest is in tropical fruit. When did you ever see a Missouri grown papaya?

Thumbnail by stressbaby
Fulton, MO

This is the other aisle, which has Carambola, Plumeria obtusa, papaya, some kind of variegated Tradescantia I think, Jaboticaba, and a sad little Wrightia religiosa that looks like it needed some water!

Thumbnail by stressbaby

Goth. I had NO doubt in my mind just how lovely your place is;-) Your collection of tropical's is so admirable from the few that I have viewed in the short amount of time I have been a member to this site.

Keep posting pic's of individual plant's that live with you when you have time or want to. May I make a request? Philodendron's and especially the Foliage piece's of Anthurium's that you have.

Thank's much

Rachel



Fulton, MO

Last one, this is a closeup of one of my favorite plants, C. 'Candy Cane'

Thumbnail by stressbaby
Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

Oh, baby, that is one I will have to chase down for myself. So beautiful.

Christi

(Sheryl) Gainesboro, TN(Zone 6b)

That is an amazing bloom ... and house - you both have incredible houses. Just lovely - all you need is some parrots flying around. Okay, maybe a mobile.

No, you don't get to see my hoop house with the little tables of tomato starts!!! Not after those wild tropical houses!

St. Louis County, MO(Zone 5a)

PCat, I'll take pics tomorrow, you'll feel better. I have little bitty plants in my little bitty house. Most of mine are for eating, my favorite thing :D

Gainesville, FL

Stressbaby, that was a great tour! It looks very lush in there. I grew a few papaya for a while but gave them up because I really don;t like to eat them, LOL. I prefer Mangos so I planted a 'patio' mango that is supposed to fruit before it reaches 90-100 feet. The curcuma Candy Cane is one of my favorites. I grew it for several years at my old house, but when we moved it was dormant and I 'missed' bringing some over to the new place. (I dug rhizomes and plants of almost everything I had in-ground and brought it with me, as well as all my containerized stuff)

Rachael, that's very kind of you to say! Thank you. I enjoy my hobby a lot. If you like philos you would like this one, P. "Golden erubescens". Its a bright yellow climber. This specimen grows on the wall directly across from the Ruffle Palm. It was a teensy cutting a few years ago, I got it as a trade. Now its up to over 8 ft.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
(Sheryl) Gainesboro, TN(Zone 6b)

It looks almost surreal.

Thanks cathy, snort!

Indianapolis, IN(Zone 5b)

Those are amazing pics. I'm ready for more. I'll be dreaming of my future greenhouse while sleeping tonight...and tomorrow...and well you know, lol! So, in the meantime, I will gladly enjoy your greenhouses. Thanks so much for sharing! ;-)

Solvang, CA

I am new around here and I just ordered my 8 x 12 greenhouse! Boy, am I out classed! I am just thinking about growing a few tomatoes. You people are amazing. Thanks for the tour. I may post a picture when mine is up. Thanks for the inspiration! mary

St. Louis County, MO(Zone 5a)

Hi Mary, to some of us 8x12 is big, can't wait to see your, too.

Gainesville, FL

The size of your greenhouse doesn't matter. Its what you do with it, LOL! I wanted to grow some aquatics in my greenhouse so I have always had a pond. This is the 2nd one, but you can;t really tell its a pond unless you are actually in the greenhouse standing beside it. Its ringed with all sorts of plants...orchids, bromeliads, anthuriums, calathea, some palms and a large 20 ft Bauhinia (orchid tree) shades it some on one end. Actually in the pond I maintain a large mat of Lasia spinosa, and some colocasias. These are the leaves of the Lasia, its a huge plant, an aquatic aroid.

I find having water in the greenhouse extremely helpful in helping keep the air more moist in our dry winters. This pond is about 50 gallons, and there is another 50+ gallon still pool and a 20 ft stream as well.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Gainesville, FL

You can see a little eentsy bit of the stream in this shot. The plant in the foreground is a really neat ginger, Alpinia rugosa. This ginger was imported into the US by Dr. Tom Wood, who is a local resident here and an expert on gingers. This specimen is containerized, I actually moved it out of the GH today to a spot under a bottlebush tree where it will summer.

Thumbnail by gothqueen
St. Louis County, MO(Zone 5a)

Oooooo, a water feature in the GH. I've got almost 100 gallons in mine, but in buckets trying to keep the place warmer. May just have to dream about this for awhile.

Gainesville, FL

This is another view when it was overgrown, LOL

Thumbnail by gothqueen
Buffalo, NY

Gothqueen, you certainly have a wonderful greenhouse. Makes me 'green' with envy :)

Solvang, CA

gothqueen,
That stream is totally amazing. How did you build up the change in elevation for your stream? What is the source of water? Did you start with an over all plan or did it just evolve? Certainly with 1700 sq ft you had to be thinking of more than growing my tomatoes! Mary

Rehoboth, MA

I love your tropical greenhouses. Unfortunately, I live in the Northeast and would have to pay alot more for heat if I kept my greenhouse above 60 consistently. I am jealous!! I have a greenhouse that is attached to my house so that I can go in there and putter even in 0 degree weather. I heat it with the woodstove in my family room. I just purchased a new sunshed this winter so I can use it as a cold frame. Ihave attached a picture of my greenhouse. I brought it from Canada and my husband built it. It is insulated as much as possible!!

Thumbnail by bonniekelley
Rehoboth, MA

Here is a picture of my new sunshed!!

Thumbnail by bonniekelley
Gainesville, FL

Bonnie, those are wonderful! We thought about adding a lean to this summer on a part of our house but decided against it. With the economy and everything we didn't want to let the $$ go.

Mary, the stream was part of the GH 'evolution', LOL. One day I looked at a foresty maze of 10-18 ft heliconias that I was having a very difficult time keeping the mealies and scale off of, and I decided that it was time for a change. So I began digging out the heliconias and a lot of other plants and containerizing them. I eventually traded all the heliconias away, but kept the other stuff while I decided what to do.

Then one day we went down to the University to walk through the Butterfly Rainforest they built there and I saw their stream. It made me think also of the "Amazon Crocodile Stream" at the Dallas aquarium, and I decided, "I want a stream too!" So I built one.

I have some photos in Photobucket I will dig out and post of the stream while it was being built. It wasn;t hard, I purposefully made it as easy as possible, LOL.

That was what I was hoping to see on this thread...other things and features people have done in their greenhouses that make them sort of unique. Ways of planting, ways of hanging, space management, hiding 'ugly' practicle stuff, and cool plants!

(Sheryl) Gainesboro, TN(Zone 6b)

Do you like 'Mr. Stripey' tomatoes. lol?

I think you have the imaginative part sussed - that stream is flat out fabulous. I might just have to have a more recreational gh, now....

Gainesville, FL

This photo is of some of the plants currently at the 'head' of the stream. These have changed a couple of times over the period that the stream ha sbeen installed...at one time I had a huge 20 ft tall Bauhinia tree at the streamhead, but it kept dropping leaves and was a real pain to prune to keep it off the ceiling at that location, so I removed it and planted the palms. There are also begonias, some bromeliads, alocasias, and a stand of variegated Phaius orchids that happen to be in full bloom at the moment

Thumbnail by gothqueen
(Zone 6a)

What a great idea for a thread.
Gothqueen, thanks for the photo of you (love your short hair) and of your greenhouse, it really is a tropical paradise. I don't remember how you heat your greenhouses, it gets cold in Gainesville, doesn't it? Your plants are really lovely.

Stressbaby, your greenhouse is so nice! It looks like a teaching facility. I can't believe you grow papayas. What is a Musa DC? And what is the C of your candy cane?

Bonnie, I love your cedar greenhouse and shed, they are so pretty! I would love to have a greenhouse attached to the house, so I don't have to scamper across the yard on cold nights. We though about connecting ours, so we could use the heat from sunny winter days, but just couldn't work it out.

Fulton, MO

C = curcuma
Musa DC = Dwarf Cavendish Banana

(Zone 6a)

Thanks! I was too tired to wrack my brain for the DC, been up feeding the GH stove last two nights.

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