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rainbowgardener
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seeds started 2016

Finally! I have some seeds planted and under the lights!
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(Pictures are sideways, but turn right side up when you click on them.)

The shelves are theoretically 47" wide, but my 48" fluorescent tubes fit in there just fine, even with zippers closed.

Last night it got down to freezing out and inside the garage it only got down to 48 (according to my in/out min/max thermometer). I never realized inside an unheated garage would make that much difference, never having had a garage before. It is attached to the house.

Now that some seeds are planted and the lights and heat mat are on, I put the thermometer sensor inside the greenhouse. Right now it is 48 deg and pretty breezy outside, "feels like" 44. That means inside the garage is probably well up in the 50's. Inside the greenhouse it is 73, with the only heat sources being 4 fluorescent tubes and the heat mat! Actually, when I opened the greenhouse to take the picture, it was SO hot and humid in there, I put the flap back down but did not close the zippers. I will leave it a little bit open until it gets colder out.

Planted:

Impatiens, sapphire extreme mix
new guinea impatiens
lemon balm
broadleaf sage
anise hyssop
parsley
coleus
thyme
broccoli, DeCicco Italian Green
celery, golden self-blanching
peppers, Tiburon poblano
petunia, grandiflora Blue Storm

Lots more to come!

The season has been getting ahead of me, while I work on building raised beds! I am only somewhere between 4-7 weeks until last frost. Early stuff needs to get in the ground; I am guessing it will get hot early here. I was out working in the yard on Feb 1 (nice) and mosquitoes were already out! (not so nice).
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Allyn
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Re: seeds started 2016

Woohoo!
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imafan26
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Re: seeds started 2016

Great. The days do creep up on you very fast.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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applestar
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Re: seeds started 2016

Yay! Looking good! You got a lot started :D

Does yours have a zippered vent in the back? My smaller one I'm not currently using has a crescent shaped zipper that can be unzipped as well as the flap can be rolled up and tied.

I find that the lights and heating mat can make it really warm inside with my two shelf indoor greenhouse shelves, too. I tried using a hole punch to punch a few holes along the top side edge of the cover where there isn't a lot of stress. You may end up needing to make vents -- an idea I had before is to put clear shipping tape on both sides, then cut a flap. This way the cover won't try to tear along where you cut, even if pulled on. I also had other ideas like adapting the duct tape crafting ideas to fold the tape into "fabric" but using clear shipping tape to strengthen the flap edges and make them so that they can be opened and closed... But haven't actually tried yet.

Right now, I don't have anything that needs 80-90° for growing except maybe the eggplant. I close but not zip the front flap during the night (I have a heating mat on the bottom shelf that is on 24/7), only zipping them closed when it's ultra cold outside (teens and single digits) and the NW facing window it's in front of will frost or even freeze on the inside. I turn on the lights manually with this one, and wait 5-10 minutes for the lights to warm up the inside, then roll open the flap. I have a mylar windshield reflector (the kind that can be accordion folded with mylar on both sides sandwiching what feels like craft foam felt) clipped onto the front uprights, covering across the front of the top shelf plus halfway down across the bottom shelf. There's a gap between the top of the reflector and the rolled front flap that helps to vent (There IS a difference in that this one doesn't have a gable so heat build up is probably higher for the top shelf)

Set up this way, top shelf is warmer and bottom shelf is cooler despite the heat mat and I make use of the heat difference and arrange plants accordingly.

...but obviously in the unheated garage, the ambient temp is colder so you will need to adjust for that, and that's what you are doing.

With the new place, everything will be an experiment for you, to adapt your expertice from the last place. But you already know a lot so it probably won't take long for you to figure everything out. :wink: Good luck!
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rainbowgardener
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Re: seeds started 2016

Yes, I've been thinking my "greenhouse" might benefit from a little vent at the top.

Last night it went down to freezing and the minimum inside the greenhouse (in unheated garage) was 60. I don't know what the soil temp is (need to get thermometer for that), but it feels warm. I left the lights on over night as heat source. Nothing is sprouted yet anyway.

I am a little worried about the humidity levels. This morning with it being all closed up over night, the inside was all beaded with water. Seems like a prime situation for damping off when I have seedlings sprouted, lots of moisture and no air circulation. That's where the vent may help, I hope. Maybe a little personal fan, but I think I would need one on every level. So much electricity... I will be keeping cinnamon in the water...
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lakngulf
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Re: seeds started 2016

Good luck with all those seed. Looks like your setup will contain warmth and give a great growing environment. I can understand your concern with humidity. I was thinking a fan might help there too. I use a dome sometimes and the humidity level is quite high.

I am on a QDMA deer forum and a lot of folks grow their own trees from acorns, persimmon seed, pear seed, chestnuts, etc. They use a fan for humidity control but also to help strengthen the seedlings.
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Allyn
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Re: seeds started 2016

Use computer fans and tie them to a single power supply. One fan on each level won't use much electricity -- maybe about as much as charging a cellphone.
http://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... 10&t=66485

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rainbowgardener
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Re: seeds started 2016

Haven't opened it up to water / check on things yet today, but yesterday the first little broccoli sprouts had appeared! My spreadsheet of previous results says for me broccoli sprouts in three days and sure enough on the third day, there it was!

Planted marigolds, bell peppers, green basil, and ultimate opener tomatoes.

Haven't cut a vent in the top yet, but I still think I need to. So far I am managing the humidity the best I can by opening up one of the zippers when the garage is warm enough, then closing it for the night to keep the heat in. It went down to 31 outside last night and stayed at 60 inside the greenhouse, with no other heat except the lights and heat mat. This is working better than I expected in that regard.

I am thinking that I will just get a couple of the small battery operated personal fans to move the air in there a little. It is easy, takes up less space, and is not another thing to draw on the house power. I'm concerned about how many things I can plug into the one outlet out there without flipping circuit breakers. It's a 1970's house and the wiring is not what they would do today.
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applestar
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Re: seeds started 2016

Once you have upper vents, there will be some air movement in the thermal layers, too.
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rainbowgardener
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Re: seeds started 2016

Winter thyme is listed as days to germination 14-21. Mine is up today on the fourth day! Lots of little green sprouts, even though I tried to be conservative with seed, as I don't have a plant sale I am growing for (yet? :) )

All is well so far!
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