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Monday, March 3, 2014

Starting Cool Weather Vegetables in a Spring Greenhouse & A Heating Source

Growing Cool Weather Vegetables in a Spring Greenhouse & A Heating Source 

I purchased a new greenhouse for the spring. My previous model was poorly built and it was wrecked by some wind back in January. The new greenhouse is a Stafford model and it measures 6 x 7 x 8.5 feet. It has a lot of improvements over my last model. I highly recommend this type of collapsible greenhouse. I review it in the video.

Some of the improvements:

1. The frame is 1 piece and you just raise or lower it into place.
2. The seams are better stitched.
3. The seams and corners are reinforced with a tent fabric.
4. The zipper is stitched better and works more smoothly.
5. The plastic shell Velcros to each pole.
6. The bottom of the shell clicks into the bottom of the frame.
7. It has a meshed window that can be zipped opened.
8. The stop sign shape design deflects the wind.

I use a small 1200 watt heater to keep the night temperatures in the greenhouse over 32 degree F. I only have cool weather crops in there now as they can take frost and freeze. The cost for 12 hours use is about $1.50. I show you how to calculate the energy usage of the heater in the video.

The heater does a great job keeping the night time temperatures between 38 and 44 degrees. It varies as my nights have varied with outdoor temperatures between 10 and 25 degree F. The normal night temperatures should be in the low 30's. Hopefully more of the 32+ degree night come soon.

You can plant kale, collards, lettuce, spinach, beets, peas and onions in the cooler weather. They can be started in the greenhouse right now. As mention, they like the cold and can take a frost. Here are some vegetables I started indoors in January as they will be ready for the garden as soon as the soil can be worked. For now, they will sit in my greenhouse.

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