Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

General tips, questions and answers about going green in your home and business. Achieve a more environmentally friendly lifestyle!

Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby jimbo » Fri Dec 18, 2015 8:18 am

The house we are renting (near Ballan Victoria) has a great veggie patch as well as a greenhouse. I decided to give it a go and plant some eggplant and capsicum inside to see if i can get an extended season. We are at 450m so frost earlier and later than Melbourne.
The obvious thing is i will constantly need to water as rain cant get in but other than that i have no idea. There is a thermometer inside and i can see that it gets quite warm even on cold days. It also has some retractable shade cloth (hessian bag material).

How hot is too hot? (35 today and 40 tomorrow) Should i leave the door open through summer to let some ventilation through? I have plenty of water so should i water more often? How will the bees get in to pollinate?

So far the plants have been in there 4 weeks. They look very healthy but haven't grown as much as i expected. Also i have seen it almost 50 degrees inside but they never look stressed or wilted at all.

Thanks in advance!!
jimbo
Solar Crusader
Solar Crusader
 
Posts: 568
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:48 pm
Location: Ballarat

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Fri Dec 18, 2015 8:55 am

Shade with ventilation is best for summer. I have waterproof shade cloth over the top of my aquaponics greenhouse, with fruit fly netting at the ends, so the wind can blow through. The netting does slow it down a bit, which is useful. I haven't measured the temperature difference, but it is always a little bit cooler inside it on hot days. It does provide protection for sensitive plants in wonter too. There was a light snowfall and a few resonable sized frosts over winter, and my banana survived, although only just- it lost all its leaves and appeared to be dying, but has come back to looking healthy again.
Bugs still get in, as do small birds, and some pollination happens, but I often hand pollinate my tomatoes to increase the amount of fruit .


Greenhouse20141230-800.jpg
Greenhouse in late 2014
http://gunagulla.com Loomberah weather and astronomy including live solar radiation intensity and UV + Gunagulla aquaponics, organic eggs and cherries
User avatar
Gordon-Loomberah
Community Moderator
 
Posts: 5427
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:41 pm
Location: Loomberah NSW Australia

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby australsolarier » Fri Dec 18, 2015 9:00 am

my experience only:

the green house at night will be about 2 degrees warmer inside than outside. so if you have mild frosts you should be allright. during the day, more like plus 30 degrees in sun.
as for summer, it needs really good ventilation or shading. some people paint white lime paint on. or maybe a shade cloth.
as for watering, the climate inside the green house will be much more humid so less watering required than the outside. when i pinched the tomato shoots and dropped them on the ground, they instantly took root and grew another tomato plant.
australsolarier
Solar Crusader
Solar Crusader
 
Posts: 307
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2010 9:27 am

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby Cherokee Solar » Tue Dec 22, 2015 3:38 pm

Hi Jimbo,

A couple of friends live in a Greenhouse in central Vic. Yeah, they have a giant shed 100m long and about 8m wide. And their house pods are on the inside of that shed. It is pretty awesome really and that roof sure does collect a lot of water when it does actually rain.

A couple of observations about greenhouses down here that you can dismiss if you want:

- A lot of people that I know that have greenhouses, the greenhouse is either empty or in a state of disrepair - but that may be the people I know. Dunno though.

- They extend your growing season down this way at either end of the season a few weeks (which is a great thing because you can get things like pumpkins and capsicums growing earlier).

- They eventually have a build up of plant diseases in them because it is a more humid environment.

- They do help to reduce the extreme UV from the sun over mid Dec to late Jan. Some plant growth shuts down during that time in response to the extreme UV.

- I have to water the annual plants outside, so watering is not an issue, but when it eventually rains the plants in the greenhouse still have to be watered.

- There can often be a build up of pests in a greenhouse because there is less likely to be predator insects living in the greenhouse - or they are unable to get in there. I don't have to spray anything here as if pests turn up, something is here to eat them.

- On the other hand, birds (which also eat pest insects) are less likely to harvest your crops, whereas they are feral here! ;)

I reckon it is a mixed bag, but if you go into having a greenhouse knowing that it is more work on your part - then your yields will be far higher and far earlier than what I get here.

Oh yeah, my mates have fruit trees in their greenhouse and the growth is incredible - they have probably about 3 times the growth of the fruit trees here. It is feral.

Nice photo too.
Off grid solar + hot water. Heavily insulated + owner built flamezone house BAL-FZ. 300 mixed fruit trees + herbs + flowers + vegetables. Bees + heritage chickens. High up in the mountains north of Melbourne. http://ferngladefarm.blogspot.com.au/
Cherokee Solar
Solar Crusader
Solar Crusader
 
Posts: 823
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:11 pm
Location: Cherokee, Victoria

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby donp48 » Wed Dec 23, 2015 1:04 am

I put up a summer greenhouse and take it down in fall to avoid damage from the wind and snow that we get in Oregon. I alternate between two spots to avoid some of the problems with diseases and pests. It's extra work, but it seems most farmers around here with permanent GH get them destroyed every few years. In winter I can raise greens in small raised beds with low covers that are less vulnerable.
The GH construction is 20' PVC tubes bent over to make a cover that's tall enough to stand in, and wide enough for a U-shaped planting bed with a narrow center aisle. I cross brace the tubes with saplings and lengthwise PVC tubes to improve stiffness.
I can transplant early tomatoes in waterwall protection in early April and harvest the first tomatoes in mid to late May, and we still have some tomatoes left for our salads now. The yield of peppers is much better than it ever was in the open.
When hot weather arrives I put up a 30% shade cloth cover and open the ends and roll up the sides to regulate heat. It's best to keep temps under 35 if possible -- peppers tend to drop blossoms if it gets too hot.
donp48
Solar Supporter
Solar Supporter
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2014 10:02 pm

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby jimbo » Thu Dec 24, 2015 7:42 am

Thanks for the replies. I will take it all on board and see how it goes.
jimbo
Solar Crusader
Solar Crusader
 
Posts: 568
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:48 pm
Location: Ballarat

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Thu Dec 24, 2015 9:32 am

If you like fish, you could put a fish tank and some raised grow beds and run an aquaponics system in there.
Trout like these can be grown over winter, or for year-round species, you could try Silver Perch or Catfish, or even Koi, large ones of which can be sold for a good price.
AP2trout20151217small.jpg
http://gunagulla.com Loomberah weather and astronomy including live solar radiation intensity and UV + Gunagulla aquaponics, organic eggs and cherries
User avatar
Gordon-Loomberah
Community Moderator
 
Posts: 5427
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:41 pm
Location: Loomberah NSW Australia

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby jimbo » Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:42 pm

How warm can trout tolerate? Gets pretty hot here.
jimbo
Solar Crusader
Solar Crusader
 
Posts: 568
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:48 pm
Location: Ballarat

Re: Growing vegetables in a greenhouse

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:08 pm

It gets pretty hot here too, but not in winter, the safe period for trout is bit longer in Vic than northern NSW. You can put the fingerlings in around March there, and they are plate size by November. I run a chiller in one of my systems, so I can keep them through the hotter months.

If you have enough dissolved Oxygen in the water, trout will survive up to about 24C, but ideally you'd keep the water temp below 20C.
http://gunagulla.com Loomberah weather and astronomy including live solar radiation intensity and UV + Gunagulla aquaponics, organic eggs and cherries
User avatar
Gordon-Loomberah
Community Moderator
 
Posts: 5427
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:41 pm
Location: Loomberah NSW Australia


Return to Living Green

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

new solar power specials