Tropical Fruit Forum - International Tropical Fruit Growers

Citrus => Citrus General Discussion => Topic started by: EvilFruit on June 13, 2018, 08:08:19 AM

Title: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: EvilFruit on June 13, 2018, 08:08:19 AM
http://youtu.be/ZD_3_gsgsnk (http://youtu.be/ZD_3_gsgsnk)
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: SoCal2warm on June 13, 2018, 10:26:42 AM
It's not just the earth's heat. Heat that builds up in the greenhouse during the daytime is pumped down, using the earth below as a heat bank. The temperatures down there aren't very warm, but it's enough to keep the plants from freezing during the night. Instead of venting the heat out in the day, a fan circulates air down into pipes. A depth as shallow as 12 feet is enough to be functional.
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: Florian on June 14, 2018, 01:50:06 AM
Have you read the manual that he sells on his website? I really do wonder why this method isn't used more if it is as easy and cheap as he claims..
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: Ilya11 on June 14, 2018, 04:15:53 AM
From what I read in other forums, the main problem with such systems is water condensate being formed underground. It should be drained somehow and it is not an easy task in heavy soils and high water levels.
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: SoCal2warm on June 15, 2018, 11:40:09 PM
Designing a system to drain out condensation in the pipes shouldn't be too complicated.

I don't see any reason why above ground (or shallow in ground) heat banks couldn't be used, assuming they were well insulated.
It could just be as simple as multiple stacked plastic brick containers of water, encassed in a double layer of pumice-rich concrete (low thermal conductivity). It would probably need to be  somewhere around a fourth of the ground surface space of the greenhouse though, in size.
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: SoCal2warm on June 22, 2018, 12:35:28 AM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2NtBCS2_WQ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2NtBCS2_WQ)
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: spaugh on June 23, 2018, 01:07:55 AM
I am surprised the dirt below the GH can store the heat for more than a day or two.  I wonder how long the elevated temps in the soil exist if the fan is shut off during the day?  At least if you get down deep enough you can probably get rid of any frost just from the earths natural temps many feet down.

He also mentioned they have bananas growing year round.  I need to see some banana racks to believe that.
Title: Re: Nebraska retiree uses earths's heat to grow oranges in snow
Post by: Walt on June 23, 2018, 01:05:43 PM
I used to have  a greenhouse sunk about 1 1/2 M into the ground.  This was in cenrtral Kansas, USA, zone 6.  Tomatoes survived the winters in it without any extra heat.  Just sun and heat stored in the walls and floor.
Tomatoes didn't grow during December until late March.  But green fruit stayed good through that time and began growing again and  ripened when longer days arrived in late March.
My fig also did fine in that greenhouse.
I think many citrus would do fine in such a greenhouse. 
The greenhouse only had automatic vent openers.  No fans.  In fact no electricity or gas.