Author Topic: Greenhouse recommendations.  (Read 1445 times)

Longranger

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Greenhouse recommendations.
« on: August 07, 2020, 12:56:16 PM »
My property in Southern California would benefit greatly From a greenhouse if I am going to bring my orchard to the next level. I have built and used an 8 x 12 foot double walled Polycarbonate greenhouse in the past. That would be too small for my anticipated needs. I am thinking about a house with 300 to 1000 square feet. Seeing what works for our many members in similar climates would help a lot. I am open to almost any design that is not a true eyesore. Could go the DIY route to save $$ but also open to having a specialty company install. I do not have a set price limit but would get emotional as costs topped $25,000. Don,t have to worry about getting approval from neighbors. Have read a fair amount and suspect a hoop house design with really good ventilation will give the best bang for my buck. All input appreciated.

Jaboticaba45

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2020, 02:03:43 PM »
I got myself a 20 by 28 from growers solution. Pretty cheap- about 2k but with  heating and the other accessories it would be around 5k
It is made of galvanized steel pipes and the height is 12 feet at the center with 7 foot sidewalls.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2020, 02:05:43 PM by Jaboticaba45 »
-Ryan

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2020, 03:24:40 PM »
That is definitely in the range I am looking for. What do you do for cooling? I really really really hate squirrels too.

spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2020, 04:06:58 PM »
I'm happy with my hoop house, you may have looked at it when you were here.  For cooling, I just roll up the sides and leave it open half the year.  And it has a fan and thermostat on it during winter to keep it at whatever temp I want. 

I built if from scratch but they sell kits.  I got a 20' hoop bender if you want to use it.  It turns 1-5/8" fencing top rail pieces into hoops.  3 pieces of top rail makes one 10ft high, 20ft wide hoop. 
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2020, 04:41:23 PM »
I liked your hoop house a lot. Do you close it up to retain humidity during Santa Ana winds?

Building myself would be ideal in terms of cost and pride of ownership.  Not sure yet if I could take on this project myself. Age(63) and limited construction skill set might take this project out of my comfort zone. At very least I would have someone else make a level pad, and need a couple of buddies to help with particularly heavy components. I will price out the scenarios and continue to educate myself before making a decision but would like to have the greenhouse up for this winter. One of the first things I will do after the house is built is wait for you to have your variety Pack pineapple slip deals. Have had only limited success growing pineapples outdoors.

Jaboticaba45

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2020, 04:57:05 PM »
That is definitely in the range I am looking for. What do you do for cooling? I really really really hate squirrels too.
Just building it now lol. During the summer I plan to take the film off. Will have to think of some vents too. It also has roll-up sides.
-Ryan

spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2020, 05:00:28 PM »
If theres a santa ana event you can partially close it and hose it down periodically or run mist nozzles off a garden hose. 

I did use a high pressure mist system for a while but it is such a pain to own and maintain.  It's way easier to keep it as low tech as possible and just open the house and use low pressure mist on those rare events if you need too. 

If you have a dirt floor, it's going to stay cooler than concrete.  Concrete expensive and will get dirty also.  If it's all dirt, you can hose it and it drains and never gets dirty.  Weeds do grow though. 

Come by if you want to look at it more and discuss.  I would be willing to help you, I like building stuff. 
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2020, 05:22:37 PM »
I was thinking decomposed granite or pea gravel for the floor. If dirt works just as well great. Why spend more?

Would like to visit you and get more ideas. Also pick up that recently grafted Pura Vida if it is far enough along.

spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2020, 05:33:16 PM »
I was thinking decomposed granite or pea gravel for the floor. If dirt works just as well great. Why spend more?

Would like to visit you and get more ideas. Also pick up that recently grafted Pura Vida if it is far enough along.

Getting some pure coarse DG with no silt in it from a rock supply would be awesome.  A couple inches on top of leveled and packed soil would ideal.  Mine is just the native DG type soil.  Weeds grow in it that is the only pain.  And it has low spots, when it rains hard theres puddles.  If you can elevate the floor a few inches so no puddles form that's best.

I'll send you a message, just come by some morning if you would like before it gets hot. 
Brad Spaugh

brian

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2020, 07:22:17 PM »
If you are in southern california I doubt you need to go too crazy with your greenhouse.  If anything I would focus on making it easy to cool.  A hoop house with some kind of heater should be okay.  I doubt you need an insulated foundation.  Polycarbonate can't be rolled up like spaugh suggested, though it looks way nicer in my opinion.   If you use polycarbonate you want a vented roof or something like that.  Even in Pennsylvania mine gets really hot in summer and I need active cooling.

I have a Conley's hobby house kit and I am really happy with it.  The kit was very high quality.  They probably have vented roof designs.  My build is documented here: http://tropicalfruitforum.com/index.php?topic=18512.125

I have to worry about snow load where I am at, you could go with a much lighter design. 
« Last Edit: August 07, 2020, 07:26:26 PM by brian »

Longranger

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2020, 08:31:35 PM »
Beautiful greenhouse Brian. I agree that a more open design with
Less costly materials is called for in my climate. Not sure I would use any active heating In winter. We have little if any frost at my location. In winter I just want to shelter tender seedlings and plants that get root rot with prolonged cool wet days. The only reason for active heating would be if I try to grow some ultra tropicals. Summertime will probably call for fans and vents even with sides up. Depending on dimensions I might put shade cloth over a portion of the house to shelter seedlings from full sun. Lots of exciting possibilities.

brian

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2020, 12:13:23 AM »
I built if from scratch but they sell kits.  I got a 20' hoop bender if you want to use it.  It turns 1-5/8" fencing top rail pieces into hoops.  3 pieces of top rail makes one 10ft high, 20ft wide hoop.

This is a really good idea.  My brother was looking to build a cheap hoop house to extend the season, but we were shocked at how expensive the most basic frames cost compared to the cost of simple pipes/tubes from building supply stores.  A pipe bending jig probably pays for itself the first run

SeaWalnut

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #12 on: August 08, 2020, 03:44:04 AM »
If you are good at building i can reccomend you a geodesic dome like my greenhouse.
Due to the dome shape i realised that i dont need any cooling in the summer due to the chimney effect created by the 5 windows opened on the roof and entrance door opened.
I will still make a cooling sistems that will consist of a transparent waterfall integrated in the entrance door and with honney combs structures made from transparent plastic( like the regular evaporative cooling pannels just instead of cartboard infused with glass i will make my own DIY honney combs pannel from transparent plastic).
A geodesic dome like mein its not an easy build thogh.
A cheaper alternative for a dome would be the ziptiedomes system but you cant cover it in polycarbonate,just foil.
http://tropicalfruitforum.com/index.php?topic=31675.0

Mark in Texas

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2020, 11:19:32 AM »
I was thinking decomposed granite or pea gravel for the floor. If dirt works just as well great. Why spend more?

Would like to visit you and get more ideas. Also pick up that recently grafted Pura Vida if it is far enough along.


I am successful grafting, growing and producing citrus, avocado, mango, pineapple, etc.  Dirt floor, bottomless Rootbuilder "pots", meaning they root into the native soil.

My new Aquafogger is the cat's meow.  No maintenance compared to misting systems, no nozzles, draws on rainwater tanks using a self contained 1/2 HP pump/tank/switch.



30 X 36 X 18' H.  Covered in corrugated Palram Dynaglas SolarSoft polycarb. Got at least 1,500 mixed citrus fruit off my key lime tree, am harvesting avocados, etc.  http://tropicalfruitforum.com/index.php?topic=7511.msg240101#msg240101



If you can't find it here it doesn't exist.  1st PDF link.  http://www.igcusa.com/catalogs/

Good luck!

« Last Edit: August 08, 2020, 11:33:03 AM by Mark in Texas »

Mark in Texas

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2020, 11:25:54 AM »
Brad, Jan Boyce graft is pushing nice on Sharwil.  What a cocktail tree now - a large Sharwil grafted to Oro Negro green shoots with JB and Lamb Hass branches.  Lamb is loaded.



Longranger

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2020, 12:51:31 PM »
Thanks Mark. Your list provides a tremendous amount of information.

Daintree

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2020, 01:55:55 PM »
My STRONGEST recommendation is that you decide what size of greenhouse you think you will need, then DOUBLE it.  If you have the room, TRIPLE it.
That would have saved me from adding on to mine, multiple times...  ;)

Cheers,
Carolyn

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2020, 02:41:38 PM »
Oh boy. You are so right. As I look at hoop house prices, at least kits, the prices get significantly lower per square foot with larger structures. Very hard to predict what size I might want in a couple of years. Also I can envision a larger structure becoming my green man cave over the winter. I do have space to make a house way bigger than I think I need. Oh the temptation😈

Nyuu

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2020, 03:02:20 PM »
Making one yocan might be a little cheaper but a lot more work you can find a hoop house pipe bending some pipe and maybe 3 mil plastic and lastly all the gear fit test the pipes and Wood for the ends

spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2020, 03:55:29 PM »
Standard hoop house best bang for the buck size is 20' wide x 50ft long.  Thats a good size and most cost effective. 

You wont wat to hang out in there in winter trust me, it will stay very hot even in winter. 
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #20 on: August 08, 2020, 04:09:47 PM »
Hahaha. Winter gardening in the buff

Mark in Texas

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2020, 07:57:50 AM »
My STRONGEST recommendation is that you decide what size of greenhouse you think you will need, then DOUBLE it.  If you have the room, TRIPLE it.
That would have saved me from adding on to mine, multiple times...  ;)

Cheers,
Carolyn

Yep,  I leave with bloody arms sometimes trying to worm my way thru the small space between a few citrus varieties with thorns and pitaya.  Folks MUST give tropical fruit trees plenty of space which eats up real estate.

And to save on heating don't go with 10' columns like I did for folks that live in temperate climes.  6 - 8' is fine depending on your goals.  Having said that I trim my Reed Avocado tree down to 10' about 3X a year.  Sharwil, Ardith....they're all getting huge.



« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 07:55:42 AM by Mark in Texas »

brian

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #22 on: August 09, 2020, 01:24:02 PM »
One thing I learned from my temperate orchard is I am too lazy to deal with spraying and picking fruit that requires a ladder to reach.  Now I cut back any limbs reach out of height.  My greenhouse roof is about 9ft tall at the eaves and 15ft in the center (where I have ceiling fans), which feels perfect for me.



Longranger

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2020, 07:34:08 PM »
Good orchard management Brian. In the past I have let some trees get out of control. It never caused me much grief mainly because I was pretty good on a ladder. The current orchard, now about 80 trees, is almost all small stuff planted this year. They will be trained to allow easier harvest than my last orchard. Also better shape and structure for long term harvests and safety.

growing a few trees in the greenhouse that will not thrive outdoors will be gratifying. Amoung those will be Guanabana, star fruit, and many others that have not survived the winter for me outside. Almost all of those were lost to a combination of cold and wet feet, even with what I thought was great drainage. Been continuing to mull over greenhouse size. It has grown to between 1000 and 1500 square feet. That should allow the luxury of quite a few trees to help shade seedlings or even grow some ultra tropical understory plants.

brian

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Re: Greenhouse recommendations.
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2020, 11:20:17 PM »
Having a greenhouse really is fantastic.  Im sure you won’t regret building one.