Monthly Archives: February 2018

Equipment You Need for a More Productive Greenhouse

Equipment You Need for a More Productive Greenhouse
Equipment You Need for a More Productive Greenhouse

Ever wondered how higher altitude places can grow crops in their location? Plants need enough heat and sun’s energy to grow. However, for places that are located in the northern portion of the globe, this requirement may be difficult to attain because of the nature of their weather. Thus, farmers in these places use the greenhouse method to be able to still successfully to grow good quality crops.

A greenhouse is an enclosed structure where plants are being cultivated. This building is usually made of glass or plastic to trap the sun’s electromagnetic radiation to warm the plants and soil inside. Having a greenhouse needs proper maintenance for a more productive crop growing. Different supplies are needed by greenhouse farmers to make this happen.

Greenhouse Supplies
There are different materials and equipment needed for a greenhouse planting to be effective. Here are some examples of the supplies you will need in case you are planning to build a greenhouse:

1. Heating and cooling thermostats. Since temperature is crucial to the efficiency of greenhouse structures, a thermostat is needed to be placed inside the building. The best location to mount it is near the middle of the greenhouse and at plant height. Also, it would be best if both the cooling and heating thermostats are protected from direct contact with water and sunlight.

2. Vents. Greenhouse temperature and humidity should be controlled to attain perfect growing conditions. Thus, vents are needed to be able to get in more air for proper ventilation during warm seasons, or seal out air in colder times of the year.

3. Exhaust fans. For plants to grow healthier in your greenhouse, circulation fans are needed. These fans even out the distribution of fresh air and heat inside the greenhouse.

4. Plant watering systems. Of course, aside from heat and fresh air, plants also need water to grow. You can always do the watering on your own by having water hoses long enough to reach all parts of the greenhouse. Moreover, it would be best if you just have an automatic watering system so you don’t have to worry not having to water your plants when you are out. This watering system should be placed on a shelf above the plants then connect the dipper’s to the circulation tubing.

5. Benches and shelving. These pieces of garden furniture are needed to be able to place more plants in lesser space. They are ideal for greenhouse owners doing gardening as a hobby. Also, a good-sized working bench is needed for potting and re-potting of plants.

6. Lighting system. Having a good lighting system helps increase the speed of growth of plants as it provides plenty of light for longer periods of time.

7. Thermometers. To properly maintain the ideal conditions inside the greenhouse, you will need to monitor the different factors affecting your plantsí growth. Different thermometers are needed for you to be able to track changes occurring inside the structure. Examples of these thermometers are the regular thermometer, humidity gauge, soil thermometer and the light intensity meter.

8. Ground cover. Since weeds are known to grow anywhere, it is best to protect your soil from these weeds that carry pests and diseases to plants. To do this, you can have a ground cover as a floor to your greenhouse or cover it with soil, sand, brick and gravel.

9. Cycle timers. To be able to automate the equipment’s you use in your greenhouse, you can also put a cycle timer which can accurately cycle the equipments on and off time. This is ideal for ventilation controls, irrigation, and misting. With this timer, you do not have to worry going in and out of your greenhouse to turn the machines on and off.

10. Greenhouse books and reading materials. Continuous learning is essential for anything we do. Same goes with maintaining greenhouses. You need to be well equipped with all the necessary requirements of having more productive plant cultivation in your greenhouse. These books and magazines will also keep you updated of the latest news and recent technology releases about greenhouses.

These are just some of the main supplies you need to have a well-maintained greenhouse. There are several items available online or at your favorite garden supplies shop. Take a look at them and determine which ones will be useful to your greenhouse.

Geraniums Galore – A Container Garden Delight

Geraniums Galore - A Container Garden Delight
Geraniums Galore – A Container Garden Delight

All over the country, geraniums flaunt their red and scarlet, rose, pink, and white blooms with a gay abandon that few other plants can rival. In boxes on city fire escapes and rooftops, in window boxes on suburban and country houses, in tubs and pots on terraces and patios, and in hanging baskets of the porches of summer cottages, they are beloved and cherished plants

It needs sun to bloom; it tolerates shade, where it is usually handled as a foliage plant. What it resents is too much moisture and a rich diet. Kept too wet, the leaves turn yellow; given a heavy soil, one high in nitrogen plants go to foliage and flower sparingly.

Even if you choose no other plants, you could have a varied potted garden of single and double zonal, fancy-leaved or variegated, scented-leaved, ivy and Lady or Martha Washington geraniums (also called show or fancy geraniums), not to mention a few oddities of cactus and climbing types.

The zonal geranium is characterized by dark circular markings on the rounded green leaves. Double types dominate the trade and are offered by florists in the spring for planting in gardens and window boxes.

Variegated geraniums, with leaves that are often brilliantly colored, are attractive even out of bloom. Set among green-leaved geraniums and other foliage plants, pots of the variegated plants add color and pattern.

The trailing, ivy-leaved geraniums are among the most profuse flowering when grown under favorable conditions. They dislike shade and high humidity and thrive best in climates with warm days and cool nights, as in California.

Lady Washingtonís, considered the handsomest of geraniums, are not so easy to grow. Like the ivy-leaved, they prefer cool nights and warm, sunny days, preferring shelter from wind and all-day sun.

If you are a geranium gardener, you may want to spark your pot plant collection with some cactus and climbing geraniums. They will give you bizarre and fascinating forms and flowers and are certain to arouse comment.

Geraniums flourish and look well in pots, boxes, and planters. They thrive in various soil mixtures if drainage is good. For abundant bloom, however, supply a special preparation, not high in nitrogen, or lush foliage and few blooms will result. I have success with good garden soil and a sprinkling of a 5-10-5 fertilizer and bone meal. During the growing season, plants respond to a low-nitrogen fertilizer in liquid form.

When potting, be generous with drainage material to insure free passage of water. As with any plant, always water with care, since too much or not enough can be harmful. The best rule is to water when the surface of the soil feels dry. Then soak the soil well and do not water again until plants need it. If soil is kept too wet, leaves will turn yellow; if too dry they wilt and discolor.

To maintain even plant growth, turn containers from time to time. Remove yellow leaves and faded blossoms which are especially distracting on plants at doorways or any other key spots. If rain rots and disfigures the center florets of the heads, pull them off with your fingers, leaving the unmarred outer florets and buds.

If you want plants for next spring, take two- to four-inch cuttings in August or early September. Look for mature stems (with leaves spaced close together) that break easily like a snap bean. Woody growth is hard to root and succulent tips tend to rot. Before planting spread out cuttings in a shady place for several hours so leaves will lose excess moisture.

When ready to plant, cut off the lower leaves, allowing but two or three to each cutting. Also pull off the little wings on the stem, since they are inclined to rot. Dip stem ends in hydrated lime to prevent decay and then insert about halfway, in a flat or large pot of pure sand or a mixture of sand and peat moss. With geraniums, rooting powders are hardly necessary. When cuttings develop inch-long roots, they are ready for spacing out in another flat or for separate planting in 2Ω-inch pots. Fill with a mixture of three parts sandy loam and one part peat moss or leaf mold. After planting, keep in the shade for the first few days, and bring indoors before cold weather.

When the separated cuttings have developed strong root systems, shift to 3Ω- or 4-inch pots. Use the same potting mixture as before, with bone meal added. Later as established plants begin to grow, feed periodically with a high phosphorous fertilizer, as 5-10-5 or 4-12-8.

To keep plants bushy and to encourage branching, pinch while small, starting when they are three to four inches high. Provide sunny windows, and keep turning pots to prevent lopsided growth. Water regularly, but allow soil to dry out just a little between applications

Plants may be wintered in cool cellars with little light. Remember only that the less light, the cooler the temperatures should be. This is because too much warmth and insufficient light cause lanky growth that undermines a healthy plant.

Gardeners with cellars or sheds when temperatures remain above freezing, can winter geraniums hanging upside down from the ceiling. The dead-looking sticks, set out in pots or in the garden in warm weather, will astound you when they develop into glorious flowering plants.

Copyright © 2006 Mary Hanna All Rights Reserved.

This article may be distributed freely on your website and in your ezines, as long as this entire article, copyright notice, links and the resource box are unchanged.

Organic Gardening In The 21st Century

Organic Gardening In The 21st Century
Organic Gardening In The 21st Century

Over the course of the past decade, a significant number of men and women from different parts of the world have taken up gardening. In this regard, these people have found themselves interested both in creating magnificent flower gardens as well as in cultivating thriving vegetable gardens.

A majority of gardeners still rely on what might be considered “mainstream methods” when it comes to the care and maintenance of either their flower or vegetable gardens. In other words, these gardeners tend to rely upon various commercially availabable chemical treatments and products to care for their gardens. Various types of garden-related chemicals — from pesticides to fertilizers — are available readily at garden supply shops and discount retail stores. More often than not, these basic products can be obtained for a fairly reasonable cost.

As a person becomes more involved in the care and maintenance of his or her garden, such an individual tends to become more conscious and aware of how the materials he or she utilizes to tend a garden space actually effects the environment and the plants being grown (particularly vegetables). Consequently, many experienced gardeners (and, in reality, an ever growing number of novices) have turned to organic gardening practices.

Organic gardening practices actually have been around and utilized by people since certain ancient tribes gave up hunting and gathering and settled down to grow their own crops and to maintain their own domesticated animals. In their most basic form, organic gardening practices consists of the use of naturally occuring materials (organic materials) in the care and treatment of a garden patch — vegetable or floral. No man made chemicals or any type are utilized in true organic gardening regimens.

For example, when it comes to providing nutrients for an organic gardening, two resources normally are relied upon: compost and manure. Likewise, when it comes to the issue of pest control, natural steps are taken to rid a garden of offensive bugs and insects. In this regard, benign insects that do not damage plants but who prey upon bugs that harm foilage are placed in a garden or patch to deal with a harmful infestation problem or situation.

In the final analysis, people who espouse organic gardening practices and techniques maintain that the goal or such natural programs is to nourish and protect the soil well into the future rather than providing a quick, seasonal fix for one planting period. Through organic gardening, soil and water contamination is reduced significantly. Additionally, when it comes to the production of vegetables, the food generated from an organic garden is free of harmful chemicals and deemed to be far healthier for human consumption.

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