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Thread: Greenhouse/Seed starting questions

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    VIP Member! MountainGirl's Avatar
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    Greenhouse/Seed starting questions

    I'm a total beginner here, will welcome baby-step advice!
    With the big build projects done, I finally get to try my hand at it this year.

    We have an unheated greenhouse;
    Click image for larger version. 

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    currently buried in snow, lol
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I bought seed trays & potting soil (for seeds) on sale last fall.
    I've watched youtubes on how to do this... I just dont know when to start.

    Do I wait until last frost? It gets cold in there at night -
    I cant start anything inside the cabin; the cats destroy everything.

    ALL thoughts/advice most appreciated.

    Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MountainGirl View Post
    I'm a total beginner here, will welcome baby-step advice!
    With the big build projects done, I finally get to try my hand at it this year.

    We have an unheated greenhouse;
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	greenhouse.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	18.6 KB 
ID:	9935
    currently buried in snow, lol
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	greenhouse2.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	7.2 KB 
ID:	9936

    I bought seed trays & potting soil (for seeds) on sale last fall.
    I've watched youtubes on how to do this... I just dont know when to start.

    Do I wait until last frost? It gets cold in there at night -
    I cant start anything inside the cabin; the cats destroy everything.

    ALL thoughts/advice most appreciated.

    Thanks!
    I start all of my seeds 6-8 weeks before the last frost. Peppers take longer than Tomatoes. With your altitude and cold nights you will need some kind of heater since you cannot start them in the house. If you wait until the last frost you will miss your growing season. I start mine in the house and move to the greenhouse when the plants are a few inches tall. You will have to watch them closely day time temperatures in the greenhouse will kill tender seedlings with out ventilation and or shade cloth within a few hours. I have covered my plants with a tarp in the greenhouse on cold nights and put a heater on a thermostat under the table and it worked well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MountainGirl View Post
    I'm a total beginner here, will welcome baby-step advice!
    With the big build projects done, I finally get to try my hand at it this year.

    We have an unheated greenhouse;
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	greenhouse.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	18.6 KB 
ID:	9935
    currently buried in snow, lol
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	greenhouse2.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	7.2 KB 
ID:	9936

    I bought seed trays & potting soil (for seeds) on sale last fall.
    I've watched youtubes on how to do this... I just dont know when to start.

    Do I wait until last frost? It gets cold in there at night -
    I cant start anything inside the cabin; the cats destroy everything.

    ALL thoughts/advice most appreciated.

    Thanks!
    You can also get clear plastic covers for your trays that you can tape down to keep the cats out allowing you to start your seeds in the cabin.

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    Looks like the green house I have invisioned, I have gathered 6- 3 foot by 4 foot windows that are good, and about 4 that are broken, but may be able to make two by combining and piecing them back together.
    Gonna basically just wall the windows in, and have two vents.
    I will also put her a heater in there for the cold nights, if i can get it done in the next few weeks.
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    I'm not much help with this. Our growing season is all year long.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Broncosfan View Post
    I start all of my seeds 6-8 weeks before the last frost. Peppers take longer than Tomatoes. With your altitude and cold nights you will need some kind of heater since you cannot start them in the house. If you wait until the last frost you will miss your growing season. I start mine in the house and move to the greenhouse when the plants are a few inches tall. You will have to watch them closely day time temperatures in the greenhouse will kill tender seedlings with out ventilation and or shade cloth within a few hours. I have covered my plants with a tarp in the greenhouse on cold nights and put a heater on a thermostat under the table and it worked well.
    Good info, especially about it getting too hot, thanks! I might have to do things different than most; there's no reasonable way to put heat out there. Maybe I'll start the seeds out there just a few weeks before last frost? It shouldn't get below freezing in the greenhouse overnight so the little seedlings should be okay hopefully.

    Quote Originally Posted by Broncosfan View Post
    You can also get clear plastic covers for your trays that you can tape down to keep the cats out allowing you to start your seeds in the cabin.
    They would push the trays onto the floor, pry open the lids, scratch out all the dirt, dance in the dirt, then run their muddy paw prints across the top of my counters and stove...you have no idea, and I'm gonna make a new rant/thread pretty quick on the hells of cats. LOL Thanks for the idea though!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Deebo View Post
    Looks like the green house I have invisioned, I have gathered 6- 3 foot by 4 foot windows that are good, and about 4 that are broken, but may be able to make two by combining and piecing them back together.
    Gonna basically just wall the windows in, and have two vents.
    I will also put her a heater in there for the cold nights, if i can get it done in the next few weeks.
    Cant really tell from the pic - but there are high 8x12" vents, and slide open screened windows (one on the door) on each end, plus last year Tom mounted a little solar-direct fan under the peak that blows air down and across. He does his crop from starts from friends & transplants when they're too big. (Mine will be out of there before then.)

    I might think about putting some heat-sink thermal in there, maybe buckets of water or blocks? to slow release heat overnight..dunno, that's just a thought right now. If I was building one from scratch - the whole north wall would be like that, but I'll figure out how to make this work. Trial & error. Fun stuff! Thanks for your reply

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparkyprep View Post
    I'm not much help with this. Our growing season is all year long.
    Oh pfffft. LOL
    ((hugs))

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    I do not know if your mountain sun is like ours. But here, even if it is cold outside (below freezing), the sun is still very warm. I would try raking the snow off the roof and see if the sun warms it above freezing inside. It might just work and with all the snow piled up around the greenhouse, it will certainly be insulated at night.
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    If you cannot maintain a minimum of 70 degree soil temperature even at night your germination rate will be severally reduced. From by experience you will have a lot of trouble starting peppers for sure as most take 10 days plus for germination. Tomatoes are a little more forgiving and most will sprout within about 7 days. Bottom heat from grow mats make a huge difference in how fast and how many seeds actually sprout.

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