SmallFrey Farms
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Show me your GREENHOUSE!

I've been thinking about buying a small greenhouse at the start of next season. Mostly for seed starting and a few small winter crops. I'm really liking the harbor freight unit... 6'x4' all aluminum frame, polycarbonate panels with 2 automatic vents for $150.

Just wanted to see how many people on here use a greenhouse regularly and how they like them! Pics would be great too!

[url]https://www.harborfreight.com/lawn-garden/growing/4-ft-x-6-ft-greenhouse-94515.html[/url]
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garden5
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I don't have one :cry:. However, I'm seriously considering putting up one of those low-tunnels to give me a few more weeks growing time on the frost-dates.

All they are is PVC pipes with each end stuck in the ground to form an arc. A sheet of clear plastic is then stretched over them. It's like a mini-greenhouse.
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farmerlon
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If you're like a lot of folks, you might outgrow a 4x6' greenhouse quickly. Keep an eye out for those 20% OFF Harbor Freight coupons (folks even sell the coupons on EBAY for a dollar or so).
If you catch their larger greenhouses on sale, and then apply the coupon too... you can sometimes purchase their larger 10x12' greenhouse for around $500.00 !!! :D

garden5
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I agree. If you are serious about your garden, you probably will want to expand your green house as often as you will your garden. Better to plant ahead and get a larger on now, rather than later (after inflation makes the price go up).
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SmallFrey Farms
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I would love the 10x12 greenhouse but my garden is already literally half of the yard and this would be another addition. The wife loves the garden but would kill me if I farmed the whole thing. haha. I mostly want it for seed starting and a few crops over winter.

Is the harbor freight product a good buy?
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tomf
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I got the large Harbor Freight green house, it is on sale for $600 right now and that is the cheapest I have seen it; normally $800. You will also need to make or buy benches for the inside of the green house.
The wind blew out some of the panels so to fix the problem I got some of the kind of screws that have a grommet on them, the kind used to hold down metal roofs. I secured the center top and bottom of the panels with them. I also ordered some more window clips from a on line green house supply store. Other than that it is a good green house and the price was right. I installed a fan to keep it from getting to hot and I put in a water line so I can water my plants in it. I may some day get one more of them.

I posted a method of putting in a green house fan here.

[url]https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=29178[/url]


[img]https://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e57/twistedtomf/party_DSC0059.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e57/twistedtomf/Garden%202010b/_DSC0064.jpg[/img]

garden5
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What do you do with your greenhouse, seed-starting, overwintering crops? Something I've always wondered about is if you start plants is a greenhouse, do you still need to keep them under fluorescent lights?
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SmallFrey Farms
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Thanks for the link and the window tips. Now I'm excited for next growing season!
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soil
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Something I've always wondered about is if you start plants is a greenhouse, do you still need to keep them under fluorescent lights?
we start all our own plants and the plants we sell in our greenhouse. we use no lights and everyone loves growing our veggie starts.
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garden5
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I wonder why plants grown in the window get leggy, but ones grown in a greenhouse do not. It's the same natural light, but perhaps you get more of it in a greenhouse :?.
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tomf
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I use the green house mostly for starts; I do keep some plants in it all summer. I also put my potted plants in it in the winter to protect them. The starts and plants get plenty of natural light so no extra light is needed. I think the reason plants do better in the green house is that the light comes from all sides and in a house the light comes from one direction and the window gives less light forcing the plant to stretch to the light.

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sheeshshe
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I did a DIY greenhouse. it does the job, I wish I had seen online tutorials first though because I could have made improvements. oh well. :)

the ones posted look really nice though!

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soil
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since she mentioned it ^^ we built our greenhouse too. if you go that route. research passive solar greenhouse design.
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garden5
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Have you found it cheaper to build the greenhouse rather than buy it? If you could do it over again, would you still have built one, or would you have just bought one?

Also, I think that the reason starts in a greenhouse don't get leggy is they do get a ton of sunlight, and more of it. Certainly, the middle of the yard gets more sunlight than just a window.
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franktank232
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[img]https://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/franktank232/IMG_3576.jpg[/img]

Just a cheap one, but man its better then monkeying with a bunch of grow lights. I set it up in late Feb and was getting temps near 90F inside while outside, well you can see was very cold. I did have to move things in and out for awhile, but it still was fun.

garden5
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franktank232 wrote:[img]https://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/franktank232/IMG_3576.jpg[/img]

Just a cheap one, but man its better then monkeying with a bunch of grow lights. I set it up in late Feb and was getting temps near 90F inside while outside, well you can see was very cold. I did have to move things in and out for awhile, but it still was fun.
That's a nice little greenhouse. That's how/where you start your seeds, I take it. How cold does it get in the greenhouse at night?
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SmallFrey Farms
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Thats amazing that even the cheap ones are able to keep temps within growing range when there is snow on the ground :lol: . I was considering picking up one of those little grow racks with the plastic over them to try out too.
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franktank232
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At night... Its basically the same inside as outside. I've actually seen it COLDER inside the greenhouse. I think it has to do with moisture. What is crazy is on nights that dropped into the low 20's (in March) i had a bunch of bananas in there (SDCs, basjoos) and with just a blanket covering them, they did just fine...no signs of damage. So make sure you add another layer of protection on subfreezing nights.

This was March 2nd... Outside temp was right around 30F... This is the temp just 2ft off the ground (which is still frozen at this point)...

[img]https://img.photobucket.com/albums/v519/franktank232/IMG_3581.jpg[/img]

It did get even warmer then this... Near eye level it was easily 90F. When working inside i had just a tshirt on.

Hallchinalady
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Thanks for the Harbor Freight heads up...I just ordered a new green house for our place! Great sale!

Green Mantis
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Would this type of greenhouse stand up in cold winds?

DoubleDogFarm
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Here is my DIY greenhouse / Tool shed. 8Ft deep, 16ft long. In the near future, I hope to convert the tool side into more greenhouse, Tilapia tanks.

Used mostly for vegetable starts, but I grow out a few tomatoes and peppers every year. In one corner I have a Meyers lemon.

[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC00958-2.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Greenhouse%20Photos/DSC02026.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Greenhouse%20Photos/DSC02030.jpg[/img]

Eric

SmallFrey Farms
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love that last greenhouse! I'm so excited for next season seeing all those starts.
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DoubleDogFarm
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SmallFrey,

Greenhouses are a sickness, once you get one, it won't be big enough.

You'll end up with hundreds if not thousands of starts.
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Greenhouse%20Photos/DSC02024.jpg[/img]

Your outdoor beds will be full.
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/CopyofDSC02137.jpg[/img]

You will have to take the extras to the Farmer Market.
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC02120.jpg[/img]

If they don't sell there. You bring them home and double your garden size.

12 beds
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC01014-3.jpg[/img]

25 raised beds
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Potatoes%202010/DSC02343.jpg[/img]

Now what do you do with all the extra produce. Back to the Farmer Market.
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC02122.jpg[/img]

and if the produce doesn't sell, :roll: Now what? Animals

Ducks and Rabbits
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC02656.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Ducks%20and%20Kale/DSC02013.jpg[/img]

All of this just because you wanted a greenhouse :D :wink:
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/DSC01957.jpg[/img]

Don't say I didn't warn you. :D All in good fun. Hope you get your greenhouse soon.

Also, Youtube has some videos on Harbor Freight kits and the modifications.

Eric

garden5
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Awesome set-up, DDF.....really awesome!

Do you use any supplemental heating for the seeds, or just the heat the greenhouse generates?
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DoubleDogFarm
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G5,
Do you use any supplemental heating for the seeds, or just the heat the greenhouse generates
No supplemental heating. I do have the parts. Hotwater heater, circulation pump, and tubing. If I decide to do root cuttings, I will install.


By the way, You still can have leggy seedlings in a greenhouse.

Eric

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soil
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Greenhouses are a sickness, once you get one, it won't be big enough.

You'll end up with hundreds if not thousands of starts.
i second this, as well as the rest of the post. we start WAY too many seeds in spring. farmers market for starts, extra food to neighbors and friends at a discount price. the rest goes to animals here too lol. and the hungry compost pile.
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engineeredgarden
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DDF - I just wanted to say that you're sick. :D No, really....that's an awesome little greenhouse!

I'll assemble my 4ft x 4ft thermostatically controlled GH (homemade) in a few weeks, and also set the coldframes up, too. All of my homemade openers are powered by gel filled wheelchair batteries, and i'll try to put up some pics when in place.

EG

DoubleDogFarm
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All of my homemade openers are powered by gel filled wheelchair batteries, and i'll try to put up some pics when in place.
Engine, Very interested in what you have to show and tell.



Eric

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DoubleDogFarm----------I think I'm slightly sick after seeing your beautiful greenhouses, and yard, plus rabbits and ducks!!!-----When we sold that big farm we had, that we couldn't afford to do anything on. After buying it under duress, in a WEEK, then having to move 2 familys livestock and everything from The interiour of British Columbia, in a blizzard, what a nightmare!!!!----Then because we paid more than we could afford, and it was so far out, gas costs plus all the other ammenities were so expensive, it was all we could do to hang on. But luckily it sold! About 4 months before they changed a bunch of stuff to buy places. The market is DEAD here now. But we needed something for retirement money, so bought a commercial building in town. We do have half an acre. But a lot will be outside rv storage. :( It's a five thousand square foot building, and we got an exceptional deal on it, but the inside is going to be for heated storage. So I don't have much room to work in. :( So seeing your set-up is like how it used to be before we moved out here!--We had found a place that was perfect for us, private, close to town and had tons of gardens, a greenhouse and coldroom. It had EVERYTHING we wanted, but I guess it wasn't meant to be, because, it sold shortly before we did. :( ----Do you use you ducks and rabbits for meat as well as manure? Or just manure and the ducks as bug cleaners???? I just absolutely LOVE your set-up. :D But I do have room in one spot for a greenhouse. Have to wait until next year unfortunately. But here, I wqould have to move the rabbits inside in the winter. When it gets minus 40 they would freeze! i'd love to add a half shed on the place and have them in there for the winter, then move them out in the spring. Years ago a friend of ours used Rabbit manure for his strawberries and I have never seen or tasted such incredible berries!--- That would be fun to sell at a farmer's market too.--Iv'e done LOTS of garage sales! :wink: Enjoy that gorgeous place!!!!!

Green Mantis
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One more Question, When you make those beds that you lift the tops on, to start plants early---( do you think I can remember the name???) :oops: Why couldn't you use those old style sliding "Shower" doors???? They wouldn't break as easy if something fell on them, they have handles to lift them up with.---Does anyone think they would work???? :?:

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engineeredgarden
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green mantis - it sounds like you are talking about a coldframe. Small box of some kind - with a slanted window mounted on one side, which is on a hinge.

EG

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That's exactly what I was thinking, but do you think I could remember it right then. :oops: But do you think the old Glass shower doors would work? They could be made to lift up, and do have the handles on already. Just wondered what people thought???

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engineeredgarden
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green mantis - yeah, it'll work like a charm. Bubble wrap even works....As long as some sunlight can pass thru fairly well, things inside will grow.

DDF - Cool, i'll try to post some pics when I have them in place.

EG

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Green Mantis,

Sorry to hear about your life's ups and downs. Life is never boring. My mother died about two months ago.

The ducks are egg laying ducks. I sold 6 dozen eggs at the Farmers Market today. $6.00 per dozen. Khaki Campbell ducks, out produce any chicken.

Rabbits are for meat and manure. I have Californian x New Zealand cross.

Thank you for the nice complements. Hope you get your greenhouse and find your paradise soon.

Eric

garden5
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Cold frames are some of the most improvised garden structures out there. I've heard of people using combinations of just about anything to make them. How about a storm window laid across a bunch of hay bales.

DDF, I think I need a green house. I was thinking about getting another growlight, but I realized that the ideal number for me to grow all the seedlings I want would be about 7 lights, as this would accommodate potting up to 3in. pots from the 72 cell trays. When you think about all of the electricity they would consume, running 16 or so hours per day, it would probably be cheaper to just use a greenhouse.

I'm just wondering, though, if I'd need supplemental heating since my winters can get pretty cool.

What are lows like outside, DDF, when your seedlings are in the greenhouse?
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Green Mantis
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DoubleDogFarm---I'm sorry to hear of your mothers passing. Mine passed away last month. Strange times? Usually in the winter or spring? But after I used to do so much gardening, canning, freezing etc. I refuse to give up here!---We also live in the commercial building. Thankfully it's a nice place.---But I want some chickens, rabbits and a way bigger area to garedeen in. Would love a milk goat or two again as well.-- :wink: We do have our old miniature horse stallion here, in the fenced in area, so have some horse manure! But we aren't supposed to have him here. although he doesn't make any noise and nobody can really see him. Plus we are the only ones that live in any of the commercial buildings around us. Actually the neigbours that do auto repair etc. really like him! So that's a bonus! But he is getting old. So don't know how long he will make it. Mind you we're getting into our early 60's and we don't like it at all!----But I can still garden, so not giving up there!---Sure do like your place. Those type of ducks are good layers aren't they? How many rabbits do you keep?-- A person ouldn't need to breed that often I gues, although then that throws the does out of whack too. I never liked breeding to close after litters. They are good though. I had--a really good recipe for Rabbit burgers, but it got lost! Darn!!!! Keep up the great work all of you!!! :D

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engineeredgarden
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Well, here's the pvc frame for mine. The whole thing can be disassembled for storage, and the only parts that are glued together are the little door, and also the very top part.

EG

[img]https://i51.tinypic.com/2jbnxwl.jpg[/img]

DoubleDogFarm
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EG,

Just visited your Blogspot. I watched your video Vent- 3000. I was ROTFLMAO. Watching you get a kick out of your own invention, too funny. :lol:

Cool little greenhouse. What is the extra framing in the back left corner? Little boys room? :roll: Just kidding. How will you apply the skin?


Eric

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engineeredgarden
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Eric - oh yes....the automatic coldframe opener was fun to build, and was a really good way to utilize the worn out cordless drill. It was pretty sick, wasn't it....hehe

I've got some of those clamps that are used to attach the plastic to the pvc pipe of the little greenhouse, and will apply screws, too. That would certainly be a tiny bathroom - but alas, a piece of plywood will be placed on top to make a second level to that corner.

EG

DoubleDogFarm
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EG,

Are you talking about these clips?


https://www.charleysgreenhouse.com/index.cfm?page=_productdetails&productid=1727&s=hoophouse

Eric

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