Wednesday, March 24

Greenhouse update

Yay for progress.  I took 2 days off from work this week expecting to have 4 full days to devote to the greenhouse project.  Instead we got 3 to 4 inches of snow and a covering of ice on Saturday and Sunday.  We actually lost power for a few hours on Sunday due to the weather.  Once again mother nature did not cooperate with my plans for completing the greenhouse.  However, mother nature did come through on Monday and Tuesday with some beautiful springtime weather in the Ozarks.

Pictured above is the greenhouse with the solid west wall up, the clear plastic east wall and the kick wall on each long side.  The wood walls have their coat of primer in preparation for the green paint that will match the metal of the new barn.  I was able to get the wiggle wire track installed as well.  Now all that's left is:
  • move the water hydrant that was installed outside to inside (ugh, don't get me started on how that happened)
  • run power from the new barn (which has it's posts set and several rafters up)
  • install the "skin" of plastic
  • install the doors
  • install the fans
  • install the louvers
  • install the thermostat for the fans and louvers
  • install the heater and new propane tank
  • level off the dirt work
The list seems like a lot but it was much longer before this week.  The fans will be installed on the far (east) end and will pull air through the louvers.  The louvers are also thermostatically controlled and (if I wire it right) should open up when the fans kick on.  This takes advantage of the prevailing winds on our place which blow mostly out of the west.

I'm excited to learn more about efficiently operating a greenhouse.  I've already started looking at software packages to help manage the operation.  There's a neat open source package that utilizes an experiment board to track several variables (temperature, humidity, etc) called Grow Manager that I will probably check out.  I'm worried I won't quite have the hang of managing the temperature in the greenhouse and we'll loose plants because of it, so I plan on doing quite a bit of measuring before we begin depending upon it.  I understand in our area of the country our biggest challenge will be keeping it from overheating in the spring and especially the summer time.

1 comment:

polly's path said...

sounds like a huge project, but I am sure it will be well worth it at the end!