Newly Registered
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2012 7:34 am
Location: NWND Zone 3

Hi .. words of wisdom welcomed :)

Just wanted to say hi, and ask for any advice and / or direction. We just got a new Riga V greenhouse. We live on a hill, and level and flat do not apply to anywhere we could set up on. So we had to build a deck supported on block (using turnbuckles to stabilize it)w/siding to cover open areas. Since we are not on the ground (OK because of native grasses and weeds, most notably creeping jenny,) we will garden in containers. Any advice on large containers, drip watering and shade cloth will be much appreciated. For containers I was thinking 31 gallon Rubbermaid tubs for tomatoes (2 plants in each.) What kind of soil mixtures does everyone use, and fertilizers? We don't plan to heat, but cooling is always an issue in summer; thus I have an interest in shade cloth and how to place it. Also misting systems as cooling agents. Wonderful forum...I'm so glad I came across it. BTW, we are Zone 3, the land of extremes. Kell

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Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25279
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Welcome to the forum, glad you found us! Sounds like a very ambitious project, but perhaps a good solution to your unique combination of challenges. How big is your greenhouse going to be? We do have a Greenhouse Forum here.

Newly Registered
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2012 7:34 am
Location: NWND Zone 3

Thank you rainbowgardener. I must not have had my notifications set correctly because I didn't see your response until today. Thanks for the link to the forum ... I actually was able to locate it myself before finding your link. Baby steps. I have posted my plea over in that forum as well. This is an awesome forum!! :)

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Joined: Sun Apr 04, 2010 3:29 pm
Location: Central PA

Kell -

couple of thoughts to factor into your situation:

"no flat ground" - definite issue easily understood - "platform" base is one solution.
the drawback to a platform is simply that situated "on dirt" the earth does provide a significant amount of heat in the "cool" period.

if NWND = northwest North Dakota - you season is likely shorter anyway - the added heat stability of being "on ground" would be a factor in the "season extender" issue. the bigger the footprint, the more effect you will see. might be time to think about "digging a flat" - but as always, budgets apply....

>> UV-coated polycarbonate glazing blocks harmful UV rays to keep your plants
uhmmmm, if plants were allergic to UV rays, we'd all be dead. it's BS; plain soda glass is best for light/energy transmission - but the curved design of the Riga isn't going to go there.
the UV coating protects the plastic from accelerated aging; the plants would likely love the UV.

a fine mist spray system is most effective.
multiple caveats:
it "cools" by evaporating water - which requires low(er) relative humidities.
evaporation cooling in hot high humidity climates is of extremely limited effectiveness.
likely not your problem.
"fine mist spraying" involves nozzles with little tiny holes and requires 50-60 psi water pressure.
if you have "hard" water the nozzles clog, rapidly. "cleaning" the nozzles is not an especially difficult task - a vinegar bath will usually dissolve the mineral content - but it is a continuing maintenance issue.

Newly Registered
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2012 7:34 am
Location: NWND Zone 3

Thanks for the thoughtful response, Dillbert. Unfortunately for us, an "on the dirt" install of our greenhouse would have required heavy equipment for earth moving or someone way much younger than we are with strong backs, so we went with this application instead...speaking of budgets! :)

We had an "in the ground" greenhouse years ago, where the base of it was about 4 feet in the ground and it was all done with bent conduit and heavy duty poly, double layered. That was a fantastic experience, but work and time constraints eventually forced us to dismantle it after recovering the top for the third time, and ultimately sold the property it was on. So here we are, having another go but in an entirely different direction.

I think the misting would be very beneficial in cooling also, and perhaps raising the humidity to some extent. This area is not known for high humidity but there are moments; I think misting would be effective also. Thanks for all the info. This is a great forum!!

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