JLudin
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PVC "Germination Station"

So I am starting to sell organic seedlings this spring, and I don't exactly have a lot of room to start all my plants indoors. Seeing as how I have over 40 different varieties on order, I needed to come up with something that could accomodate the orders. Looking online I found all of these different plant stands that cost anywhere from $150-$250. There was no way I was going to drop that kind of cash on something like that with a semi-limited budget. I started racking my brain trying to come up with an inexpensive way to do this. Of course, PVC. I have built things in the past with PVC that worked out just fine. I just needed to come up with a design that could be easily broken down when I was done with it, and this is what I came up with. It's three tier, is able to hold up to 12 trays (if need be), and I swapped out the shorter legs on the bottom two with longer cuts so I could raise the lights as the plants grow after potting up. Total cost: $22. It works great and took me less than five minutes to put together. I also built two 24"x48" trays to put the grower pots on for easy transporting when they are ready to be hardened off. Great and inexpensive solution!! Just thought I'd share.

[img]https://i39.tinypic.com/34j2ed2.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i40.tinypic.com/rj1w5y.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i42.tinypic.com/w2gish.jpg[/img]

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Royiah
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:shock: cool! nice going! Can the design be down sized? I was looking for something like this. to tell you the truth mine are on chairs in my room and I'm running out of space. :oops: If I could make something like that then I can move them into another room.

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AZCricket
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When my husband saw this set up, his immediate thought was to use those metal storage racks you can get for relatively cheap.

Something along the lines of this:
https://www.kaboodle.com/hi/img/a/0/0/e/0/AAAACmo8ZGcAAAAAAA4BEA.jpg

Or this:
https://easyrack.org/images/industrial_shelving_open.jpg

You can get them from WalMart, along with simple desk lamps (like so: https://images.landofnod.com/is/image/LandOfNod/Desk_Lamp_Bright_Ideas_Re_V1_1011?$web_family$ ) and just use white 6,000k CFL bulbs in them...for small-scale seed-starting anyway. Once we clear up the space, that is most likely the type of setup we'll be putting together.
Last edited by AZCricket on Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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rainbowgardener
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Down sizing would be easy - just make it one or two tiers, not three...

Nice work!
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Royiah
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Oh I see. :oops: don't know why I didnt think about it before.
Thanks

JLudin
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Yep, sure can! I actually originally had it with 16" legs, but I took those out and replaced them with 32". I only upsized because I'm also putting the potted up plants in the 2nd and 3rd rows too. The original design was to have 12 trays, but I scaled back to only four. I just need to figure out how I'm going to get 700 plants to all fit on that rack after I pot up :? I actually have an additional setup on a makeshift bar area with lights suspended from the ceiling.

lily51
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Ingenious! It's one of those ideas that makes you say, " why did' t I think of this!". The plants seem to like it, too.
Thanks so much for sharing it, and in time for seed-starting.
Enjoy the fruits (or veggies or flowers...) of your labor! :D

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GardenRN
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NICE!!! For $22 I think I'll go build me one too! The gf was gonna let me drop $45 on a new plant shelf like my old one but I couldn't justify it and passed up the opportunity. (so mch for striking while the iron is hot!) :)

What size pipe did you use and what lengths ( if you remember.)
Jeff

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JLudin
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Yep! I used 1" PVC for all. For the three tier stand you will need (40) T connectors, (16) 19-1/2" horizontal bars (to run lengthwise), (16) 3" for connectors, (12) vertical bars (these are the ones I replaced with longer ones, had 16" to begin with which is more than long enough to just start seeds), (12) 15" cross pieces, and (4) 5" legs.

If that's too confusing I can cross-reference the pic with corresponding numbers. It's pretty simple though!

I might add that I work at a lumber yard/hardware store, so I had a slight discount on some of the pieces, but it is still very affordable.

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GardenRN
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aw so NOW the truth comes out! the discount!! lol j/k. I'm thinkin it'll still be less than the $45 for the other shelves and I like it better! AND I can take it apart easily and put it away in the summer time.

That was a little confusing, but I"m sure I can figure it out. I'm gonna modify the width anyways to fit my lights. Since there's really no purpose in it being longer or wider than the lights you have.
Jeff

USDA Zone 7a, Sunset Zone 32.

Failure is only a fact when you give up.

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GardenRN
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Looked into it, but the tees are priced to where if I don't buy the 10 pack, it's just as expensive as buying the shelves. And the 10 pack of tees only comes in the 1/2" size. which means I'd have to downsize the pipe to the 1/2". But idk if that would be strong enough to support the weight of all the soil. I wonder if the manager would offer a discount since they don't carry the bulk packs of the larger size connectors. :?: I'll have to go back by and find out. The connectors are 64 cents each or 10 for $2.60. That's a huge difference!
Jeff

USDA Zone 7a, Sunset Zone 32.

Failure is only a fact when you give up.

dustyrivergardens
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great job I love the idea...

JLudin
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GardenRN wrote:Looked into it, but the tees are priced to where if I don't buy the 10 pack, it's just as expensive as buying the shelves. And the 10 pack of tees only comes in the 1/2" size. which means I'd have to downsize the pipe to the 1/2". But idk if that would be strong enough to support the weight of all the soil. I wonder if the manager would offer a discount since they don't carry the bulk packs of the larger size connectors. :?: I'll have to go back by and find out. The connectors are 64 cents each or 10 for $2.60. That's a huge difference!
Holy cow those connectors are expensive!! They are .23 each here where I work before a discount is ever applied. That is 1" too. You are right, that would make a big difference lol. The 1/2" PVC might be enough to handle that, but if you would be spending more than $40 on the setup then yeah, I wouldn't worry about that.

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