the new greenhouse

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

That's cool, roybird! I should check mine, tomorrow when there is sun.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Green? Where? When? (she says burrowing in the drifts like a groundhog)

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Wouldn't some fresh green leaves be great right now?

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

A tomato. Just one simple tomato drooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooool.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Yesss..... Just a tomato. Maybe if we dig some of those violet leaves out of the snow, we could make a truly fresh salad. At this time, even my almost constantly available parsley farm is buried under snow. I yearn for a trip to a place near the equator where winter means it rains more.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Tomatoes! Tomatoes! To heck with green, give me red red red tomatoes!!!

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

I got the last of the 1st phase of seeds planted in pots and put in the greenhouse tonight. I've now done all the ones that need stratification and have something over 100 pots with seeds in them. I'll take a picture or two when there is light out. I'm figuring mid to late February for planting the batch that don't require stratification.

Santa Fe, NM

You are going to have so many plants! You'll have an oasis.

Dolores, CO(Zone 5b)

Aren't you having so much fun with your new greenhouse??!!! It must just make you so happy to be able to start seeds now and have your very own special environment (for both you and them)!

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

How very exciting dparsons!

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

It is quite nice. I am enjoying it.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

Picures as promised. This one is one group of seeded pots. Note the high tech "Dixie" brand 18 oz. plant pots I'm using. An ice pick provided drainage holes. You can see where I've written names and numbers on the pots in front.

Thumbnail by dparsons01
Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

This one shows some of my flats of Veronica with the plants spreading from one into several cups. At this stage I was using more saved commercial plant pots.

Thumbnail by dparsons01
Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Looks as if you grew your Veronica from cuttings, not seed. Dixie is one of the great American pot makers -- though they may not know it. I have relied on them myself, though not having a greenhouse their small bottoms compared to tops makes them tipsy if I try to put them on the ground. Sometimes I use ones I saved from nursery plants, other times I order square ones with more or less vertical sides from Charley's Greenhouses.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

O now I soooooo want to fire up the greenhouse. It is so neat and tidy dparsons with everything labelled. Any of the new ones germinate yet??? Do you hear rustling??? I always listen for rustling noises which I'm sure means the restless seeds are getting ready to sprout.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

The Veronica is not from seed, although I did find some V. oltensis seed as well. I'm letting the Veronica spread and root. I have found a source for pots that is reasonable, but still a lot more pricey than Dixie. They are also a nice, bright red and plants like red anyway.

No seed sprouting yet. Its been below freezing at night so its still early. These guys need some cold time first. They'll poke their noses up when they are ready.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

My fruit trees (bare root) arrived yesterday. 1 Peach, 1 Plum, 1 Pear - all dwarf, all self polinating. I'm in the middle of prepping their spot.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Cool. Fruit trees are great here. Just follow the directions that came with them. In 2 or 3 years you will be in business -- maybe not with the pear. They take longer. I love fruit trees because I love fruit and because they make shade -- depending on the size you bought. Have fun! You won't regret planting fruit trees in New Mexico!

Dolores, CO(Zone 5b)

Hooray for your new fruit trees! I'm living vicariously through you... couldn't even get a shovel in the frozen dirt here if I tried! Pics?

Santa Fe, NM

I love fruit trees except for the mulberry. Birds, however, love the mulberry very much. We have a couple of currant bushes that are getting huge. We like currants, the birds also like them and they will grow in somewhat shady areas without excessive watering. I believe there are xeric natives, which is probably what ours are. They came from Plants of the Southwest many years ago.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

If only I could negotiate with the birds and get them to eat one fruit and not any others. Give them a mulberry and have the peaches uncontested.

I'll post a picture when I get them in. They basically look like 5' branched twigs.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

LOL at getting the birds to eat only one fruit tree! The only thing you can do is pick the fruit before it is totally ripe, which is the whole reason we grow fruit trees in the first place. But what I am learning over the years is that you can pick your peaches, etc. slightly before they are ripe and mostly beat out the birds -- and chipmonks and squirrels like the fruit as well. You can still get fruit that is 100x tastier than the grocery store if you pick it **just** before ripening. After all, you don't have to send it halfway across the country.
Beating the critters to the fruit is one of the greatest challenges of human kind as far as I am concerned. Talk about a universal problem!
I love fruit trees for their not too gigantic size, which works out nicely with modern lots, and for their flowers in the spring, and for the fruit. I love watching the fruit trees blossom in the spring. I consider them a vital part of my landscaping without even a single fruit.
I have:
2 cherries ( actually 3, but one is not healthy and will probably go this year.)
3 pears
2 apples
4 crabapples, but one is a volunteer and will be replaced with something more useful this year or next. One is a weeping one that is purely ornamental. I won't be using the fruit from it, but the birds seem to really like it.
1 apricot
1 peach
1 plum
1 quince

The peach, cherries, and apricot were the first to bear. I am getting a few seckel and orcas pears, but this was the first year for a decent crop. The apples, two crabapples the plum and the quince are too new to have done anything and they haven't done anything but have a few blooms. Maybe more next year.
They do look like sticks at first. Some of mine weren't even 5 ft. tall but the young bare root ones grow faster and make better trees than the ones that come in pots -- something I learned the hard way. Sounds like you got bare root. You will not regret it.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

dparsons which pear tree did you get? I looked for a self-pollinating one and I couldn't find a hardy one so I thought I would have to settle for a dwarf apple.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Dahlianut,
Here is a link to my very favorite pear pollination chart. You don't actually have to buy the pear tree from them, if cross-border stuff is a problem, but you can look for the variety you want on the chart. If the tree that fits your needs is not self fertile, you can buy one that has a branch of something else appropriate grafted onto it. They should come in bloom at the same time. See bloom date groups listed below the chart. The grafting is a common think in the US and probably is in Canada as well. But European pears do very well in cold climates, so I bet you can grow most of these if you can find a seller. This nursery, Raintree, has a very descriptive catalog -- I use it as a reference book.

http://www.raintreenursery.com/pollin_home.cfm

Here is their home page:
http://www.raintreenursery.com/

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

More on pears -- can you tell I like them? I found this web page on hardy pears after a google search. It lists the pears hardy in zone 3.

http://www.ibiblio.org/ecolandtech/NAFEX/message-archives/old/msg04950.html

I think the best bet is to ask around. Ask people you know who grow pears what they are growing. If there are other pear trees in the area, you probably don't have to worry about pollination. I thought I had a pollination problem, but what I had was a tree that was just too young to bear. I have no idea what pollinates my orcas pear because the seckel I bought to pollinate it blooms in just the wrong period. But it finally produced its first crop -- after 6 or 7 years with no other pear trees that I could see in bloom. My friends did the same with a satsuma plum. They kept meaning to get a pollinator for it and never did and low, a crop of plums. They have no idea where it got pollen, but some blew in from somewhere! If other people are growing pear trees, you may not need a pollenator.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Paj that's a fabby website. There are no pear trees in my neighbourhood sigh. I was going to getting my dwarf apple (and an apricot) from a local supplier because they grow all their fruit trees outside. Although now I shall look for a Canadian supplier for a shinsui pear tree.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3b)

I've read that pears are largely wind-pollinated, given that they are not very attractive to insects (for some strange reason). Therefore, another pear "somewhere in the neighborhood" (quite unlikely in itself here) might not be very effective. But two trees in very close proximity seems to do the trick... We have 'Early Gold' and 'Golden Spice' side by side in the back yard, and seem to get pollination... that is, to the limited extent that the weather cooperates with pear production here. Pears bloom very early, in early May, and we frequently have a week of snow or similarly crappy weather right when they are in bloom that negates any fruit production for that year. Same with apricots... We've gotten small pear harvests in about 4 years out of the last 12... in the last two years running, oddly enough.

Santa Fe, NM

Interestingly, we have found that our mulberries are ripe at the same time as our cherry trees on the cold, dark north side of our house. The birds really do have more interest in the mulberries! I think, because the mulberries are sweeter ( the cherries are pie cherries ) and keep on longer so the birds get in the habit of eating them.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

I got a Bartlett pear dahlianut. It is supposed to be self pollinating. The place I got it is now out of them.

As for timing of picking and dealing with birds, I suppose they will get some of the fruit. I really only get bothered when they take one bite out of each fruit on the tree. Perhaps they are testing for ripeness themselves. It would certainly be nice if I could communicate with them and reach an agreement on a division of fruit. "You get the fruit over 8 ft high, I get the fruit under 8 ft high."

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

I leave the cherrys for the birds. The chickadees get tipsy on them when they ferment and we have to be careful not to step on staggering chickadees for a couple of weeks.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

LOL, drunk birds. That is funny.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

My DH didn't believe me until Dee fell out of the ash, bounced off the hammock, landed at his feet and lurched around for a bit. I will try to get a pic this summer.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

The cherries never get a chance to ferment in my yard. The chipmonks steal them. The birds only get a few and I rarely get more than a handful. Tried bird netting and ended up trapping the birds under it. I don't know how they got in, but they are very clever. Then I would have to let them out and after that the tree was horribly tangled with the bird netting. I have heard that in the old days in Minnesota they used to put tablecloths over their trees the last week or two. That way the birds won't see them.
Anyhow, I don't have enough cherries yet for it to be a big loss. I get more each year, but the tree and crop are still not very big. I have neighbors who get a lot.
Yes, dparsons, Bartlett pears are self fertile, though they probably like pollen from a different kind better. Seckels are also self pollenating with the same preference for foreign pollen. The problem for Dahlia nut is that neither of those would probably stand her climate.
Dahlianut, I bet your local nursery will graft a branch on a pear tree for you so you can have the tree you want with cross pollination on the same tree. I have a 4 in one pear tree, but it has been very slow growing because it is in an area that gets little water and where the soil is horrid. I keep mulching it with manure, then grass clippings, then manure each year, and it does seem to grow a bit more each year, but let's just say, it has tough conditions to grow in. It has had a handful of flowers each year for two years now, but it is tiny, still -- not anywhere near as tall as me at 5 ft. 3 inches.

Stevensville, MT(Zone 4b)

Hi! Live in zone 3B MT. blonde question!! What temp does the greenhouse need to be in the winter too use it all year, or can you?

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Depends on what you are growing. Tropical plants are going to want hot and humid. Cool crops won't. You might get Elliot Coleman's Four Seasons Gardening as it gives great information on year round gardening without adding heat. You could adjust to your purposes.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

I don't have a greenhouse, but this much I know -- even veggie seeds have preferences for germination. For instance, stuff in the broccoli family wants to be cold. It will even tolerate some freezing. Tomatoes, and especially peppers and basil want lots of warmth or they will do nothing. Lettuce and spinach and leafy crops like it cool. Poppies, like it cold and even some freezing, as I understand it. Normally the seed package will tell you.
This is just germination. Certainly you don't want to put most tropical plants in a greenhouse that hits 32 degrees. Also lots of plants can't take too much heat. Even tomatoes, like it hot but not too hot. Okra -- give it as much heat as you can muster.

Stevensville, MT(Zone 4b)

Going to use the GH for starting my vegetable starts, hot house tomatoes and bell peppers. Flowers, hanging baskets.....does anyone have a greenhouse in zone 3b that they grow year round?

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Hi Wendyloo. I'm 3a. I can't without supplemental heat December - March.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

Even in zone 7 it will get below freezing in the greenhouse at night. Still warmer than outside it, but not enough for tomatoes in the dead of Winter.

Stevensville, MT(Zone 4b)

anyone have a greenhouse with a heated concrete floor, my husband is in the floor heating business

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