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Old 08-05-2007, 04:25 PM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Default Greenhouse / Shadehouse

In Central to South Florida I call the elaborate gutter connected
greenhouses "OVENS" many commercial growers use them and in summer
their 1,000 fans still will not bring the temps below 100. Plants
grown in them need so much extra care as to warrent extra employees or
more expensive automated climate control. I have opted to try to grow
as naturally as possible so that when I tell a customer they can grow
on a porch, patio, lanai or in trees their plants will do very well --
not having to "adapt" to new climatic conditions. Just a large
structure covered with shade cloth so plants get the rain and air
movement as nature supplys-- no fans or "wet pads" (which BTW are a
big waste of money in Florida) [High humidity State]. I must admit to
extra work during our usually" once every 10 years freezes." I can see
"ovens" in states where freezing temperatures are the norm every year
but in Florida they are a joke & will limit the type plants that can
be grown in them, or greatly increase time and money spent to keep
some genera alive. Electricity is getting more & more expensive. I
know I'll hear from the "experts" on how this system won't work-- but
I've been doing it for 35 years. Good growing no matter how you do it.
Bill


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Old 08-05-2007, 05:45 PM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Default Greenhouse / Shadehouse


"Bill" wrote in message
oups.com...
In Central to South Florida I call the elaborate gutter connected
greenhouses "OVENS" many commercial growers use them and in summer
their 1,000 fans still will not bring the temps below 100. Plants
grown in them need so much extra care as to warrent extra employees or
more expensive automated climate control. I have opted to try to grow
as naturally as possible so that when I tell a customer they can grow
on a porch, patio, lanai or in trees their plants will do very well --
not having to "adapt" to new climatic conditions. Just a large
structure covered with shade cloth so plants get the rain and air
movement as nature supplys-- no fans or "wet pads" (which BTW are a
big waste of money in Florida) [High humidity State]. I must admit to
extra work during our usually" once every 10 years freezes." I can see
"ovens" in states where freezing temperatures are the norm every year
but in Florida they are a joke & will limit the type plants that can
be grown in them, or greatly increase time and money spent to keep
some genera alive. Electricity is getting more & more expensive. I
know I'll hear from the "experts" on how this system won't work-- but
I've been doing it for 35 years. Good growing no matter how you do it.
Bill


I wouldn't think anyone in a tropical climate would need or want a
greenhouse, even if they grew cacti. To protect them from the rain all that
would be needed is a cover overhead.


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Old 08-05-2007, 10:11 PM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Posts: 158
Default Greenhouse / Shadehouse

Manelli Family: It's the "cover overhead" that Bill objects to, and he has
some very valid points, altho there are other issues to consider.

The cover overhead increases solar loading, and therefore heat inside the
shadehouse, even when all the sides are open. This is inescapable, short of
ditching the roof, and it causes me not to grow anything but the most
heat-tolerant orchids -- unless they are cold-hardy enough to stay out all
winter in the one "uncovered" shadehouse that we have -- we are too busy to
be carting plants in and out all the time during winter, which is our
busiest sales season). And I do have to take some measures to cool things
down (exhaust fans and overhead misters) in summer, which does make FPL
happy.

But without it:

1. It is indeed very difficult to heat for winter -- and yes, we have to do
that here, at least enough so I DO notice the gas bill. We heat to 55F for
our vandas, evergreen dendrobiums, and buds on all genera that we grow (not
a concern for Bill given his specialization in the intergeneric Oncids, few
of which would complain at high 30s, but do hate high heat). With a small
shadehouse in the home setting, this may not be as much of a priority -- you
could roll out a sheet of plastic as needed and tie it down, or even bring
the tender stuff into the house at need. That's what we used to do when we
were growing in a 15' x 15' "hobbyhouse" less than 12' tall. We had it set
up much like opening or closing the drapes in one's home. We also had a
heating element that fit on the type of small propane tank that one uses for
a BBQ grill, and only needed one for the whole little house. Those
measures don't work so well with a much taller 10K sq. ft. to cover and
uncover.

2. You cannot control your watering. Where I am (a little over an hour
south of Bill), we get periods in summer where it rains quite heavily every
day for 2-3 weeks in a row. Some orchids like that, some will tolerate it
if you spray enough fungicide, and some just plain won't. [Aother point not
applicable to you home growers, but in a retail setting, you're also
effectively closed for business when it rains ... ].

Even in the home setting, whether or not to use the overhead cover depends
to a large extent on what you choose to grow, how you pot or mount them, and
other factors. This is something we discuss at length whenever customers
ask us to build a home shadehouse for them, to try to help them make an
informed decision.

Kenni


"Manelli Family" wrote in message
...

I wouldn't think anyone in a tropical climate would need or want a
greenhouse, even if they grew cacti. To protect them from the rain all
that would be needed is a cover overhead.




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Old 09-05-2007, 12:33 AM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Posts: 58
Default Greenhouse / Shadehouse


"Kenni Judd" wrote in message
. ..
Manelli Family: It's the "cover overhead" that Bill objects to, and he
has some very valid points, altho there are other issues to consider.

The cover overhead increases solar loading, and therefore heat inside the
shadehouse, even when all the sides are open. This is inescapable, short
of ditching the roof, and it causes me not to grow anything but the most
heat-tolerant orchids -- unless they are cold-hardy enough to stay out all
winter in the one "uncovered" shadehouse that we have -- we are too busy
to be carting plants in and out all the time during winter, which is our
busiest sales season). And I do have to take some measures to cool things
down (exhaust fans and overhead misters) in summer, which does make FPL
happy.

But without it:

1. It is indeed very difficult to heat for winter -- and yes, we have to
do that here, at least enough so I DO notice the gas bill. We heat to 55F
for our vandas, evergreen dendrobiums, and buds on all genera that we grow
(not a concern for Bill given his specialization in the intergeneric
Oncids, few of which would complain at high 30s, but do hate high heat).
With a small shadehouse in the home setting, this may not be as much of a
priority -- you could roll out a sheet of plastic as needed and tie it
down, or even bring the tender stuff into the house at need. That's what
we used to do when we were growing in a 15' x 15' "hobbyhouse" less than
12' tall. We had it set up much like opening or closing the drapes in
one's home. We also had a heating element that fit on the type of small
propane tank that one uses for a BBQ grill, and only needed one for the
whole little house. Those measures don't work so well with a much
taller 10K sq. ft. to cover and uncover.

2. You cannot control your watering. Where I am (a little over an hour
south of Bill), we get periods in summer where it rains quite heavily
every day for 2-3 weeks in a row. Some orchids like that, some will
tolerate it if you spray enough fungicide, and some just plain won't.
[Aother point not applicable to you home growers, but in a retail setting,
you're also effectively closed for business when it rains ... ].

Even in the home setting, whether or not to use the overhead cover depends
to a large extent on what you choose to grow, how you pot or mount them,
and other factors. This is something we discuss at length whenever
customers ask us to build a home shadehouse for them, to try to help them
make an informed decision.

Kenni


Very interesting. Thanks.



"Manelli Family" wrote in message
...

I wouldn't think anyone in a tropical climate would need or want a
greenhouse, even if they grew cacti. To protect them from the rain all
that would be needed is a cover overhead.







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