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Greenhouse Supplies

Successful Planting

Starting your own plants from seed has so many advantages!

  • Reduce your grocery bills
  • Grow special varieties of produce that you can’t find in the grocery store or your area
  • Maximize your food’s nutrition by eating fresh picked and local
  • Save money and start flowers to fill your flower beds with color
  • Enjoy the best tasting food possible
  • Share with family and friends
  • And so much more!

Get your seeds off to the right start for the most successful germination! Click here to print your FREE Seed Starting Guide. This guide can help you master the basics of seed planting or reinforce you prior skills from previous seed starting years.

Start your seedlings or cuttings with ease at a fantastic value! Everything you need for one flat of seeds can be found on our website. Such as: our 3″ Coir Fiber Biodegradable Pots that are environmentally friendly; the Seedling Heat Mat, perfect for one flat of seeds, encourages more successful starts; and organic starter cubes for cuttings and seeds for soil or hydroponics.

For more information: https://www.greenhousecatalog.com/category/seed-starting-supplies

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Gardening

Organic Gardening

Tasting that first juicy tomato, crunchy pepper, or sweet strawberry is gardening’s finest reward! When you grow organically, there are so many benefits for both you and the environment: produce is healthier, more colorful and tastes better; and the Earth gets treated better as well.

Read about some tips for easy organic growing.

  1. Grow in organic soil – If you’re growing in-ground, it’s always best to have your soil tested first, to find out what amendments are needed. (County extension agents can also advise you on soil needs for specific plants in your area). Purchasing sterile organic growing media for container garden plants is easy, just be sure that it contains the texture and minerals that are needed for the produce you plant to grow.
  2. Plant organic seeds and seedlings – The best way to grow organic is to start organic. Obtain seeds from a trusted source. If you are not able to find seeds, then plant seeds that have not been treated with fungicides.
  3. Grow companion plants – Plants can be compatible growing mates for different reasons: some plants act as a trap crops, luring in insects and thereby protecting the plants around them; some plants drive away bad bugs (marigolds are a good example); while other plants attract beneficial insects (carrots, dill and parsley attract praying mantises and ladybugs). Also, when quick-growing vegetables are planted next to long-season veggies, their growing and harvest schedule are varied which can help to avoid competition for nutrients and water; and shallow root plants and deep root plants can be can be planted next to each other because they won’t compete for soil minerals and other resources
  4. Compost – Composting is a great way to recycle vegetable scraps and provide natural fertilizer for your plants. Using red worms (vermicomposting) is a great way to get prime compost quickly. These “Red Wrigglers” can compost half their weight each day! Check out our Worm Factory 360 to learn more
  5. Avoid Chemicals – Rather than use chemical additives or man-made pesticides on your plants, use 100% natural compounds. Compost makes a great soil amendment and fertilizer.
  6. Pest Control – Using insecticidal soap and Neem oil or planting companion plants that seem distasteful or using sticky cards can catch bad bugs.
  7. Attract beneficial insects – Obtaining good bugs and placing them in your garden can help protect your produce. As mentioned above, some plants also attract good bugs, such as flowering herbs (dill, rosemary and lavender) and flowers like achillea and buddleia.
  8. Prevent weeds – Weeds are not only nuisances, but also bridges of disease. They can rob water and nutrients from your plants, so taking care of them is very effective at preventing unwanted plants. You can do this by hand-weeding, using biodegradable mulches and other non-toxic methods.
  9. Keep disease at bay – There are many ways to ensure that you’ll have very few, if any, disease issues with your plants. Some include: practicing crop rotation, to avoid planting in potentially disease soil. Another is to plant resistant varieties whenever possible. Pest prevention and control are also key, and easily accomplished without toxins. Sending in beneficial insects and using organic deterrents are two other effective solutions.
  10. Remove debris and spent plants – Keeping the greenhouse clear of plant debris is very important for maintaining a healthy environment for all of your plants.
  11. Harvesting – here are some detailed harvest tips for your vegetables so you are able to pick them at just the right time for the best flavors, textures, and colors.
  12. Store produce properly – You’ve put time, effort and care into growing you organic plants, and now you can extend the life of the produce. For tips on storing all varieties of vegetables check out this article about good storage practices

The more organic your food, the healthier both you and the land are. It doesn’t take much to ensure that your plants benefit from safer methods of maintenance that result in delicious, 100% natural produce in no time.

Want more growing tips? Visit our Resource Page.

Categories
Greenhouse Kits

Create your own food source.

A greenhouse is the best way to assure you have control of what you eat. Grow a fresh supply year round. You always know what’s available and what went into the food.

Categories
Greenhouse Supplies

Winter Growing

Tips to keep your heating costs low while maintaining healthy, beautiful plants!

With the right system and appropriate TLC, you’ll have healthier, more abundant harvests, reduced plant care and grocery expenses.

Now is the time to make plans to reduce your energy consumption this winter, and here are some simple yet effective ways to do so.

Seal and Insulate

If you decide to install new heating units or systems in your greenhouses, take these preparatory steps first. This will help ensure that your heat and money aren’t leaving the greenhouse. Here are a some things you can try to help get as much free heat and insulation as possible:

· Make sure both the interior and exterior walls are clean of dirt so maximum sunlight can pass through.
· Caulk and seal leaks, tears, and holes in the structure.
· Consider upgrading your greenhouse material to a better insulator like Solexx.
· Fill buckets or old milk jugs with water and paint them black (or add a dark dye to the water). They will collect heat during the day and slowly release it back into the greenhouse at night.
· Line the base of the greenhouse with hay bales.
· Hang Christmas lights around your plants for extra heat.
· Use a seedling heat mat or two under your more sensitive plants and cover with a tall humidity dome. Or make a mini greenhouse within your greenhouse using Solexx.

Insulating your greenhouse is key to keeping the heat in and the cold and wind out.

On a side note: If you are thinking about buying a greenhouse or recovering an existing greenhouse, our Solexx coverings are superior insulators and minimize heat loss. To see how Solexx compares to other forms of greenhouse covering, check this brief chart

Choose Suitable Heating

Whether you want to grow exotic non-native plants, maintain a vegetable garden, or plan to grow flowers through the winter, keeping your plants comfortably warm is imperative. Choosing a heating system will depend in part on the size of your greenhouse, the needs of your plants, and your personal budget.

We have heating units to suit many needs and budgets, including electric, natural gas, and propane. Before you choose, take a look at our heater calculator to help determine your heating requirements. Then, we suggest you peruse the different heating options we offer before making a final selection.

Monitor Temperatures
Temperatures can fluctuate radically from night to noon. Therefore, it’s important to monitor the air your plants breathe. First you’ll need a
thermometer to measure indoor and outdoor temperatures. You can keep track of both, as well as greenhouse humidity levels, from the comfort of your home with our wireless forecasting unit.

Keeping humidity levels moderate requires keeping the greenhouse dry. Water carefully, so plant leaves and surfaces stay dry most of the time, and water early in the day so the water evaporates before evening. And of course, desirable humidity levels vary with the temperature.

Cool Weather Care
With the proper heating care, your greenhouse plants will be more robust, you’ll spend less time and money on pest remediation, and you’ll lower your heating and grocery bills. Just take care to seal and insulate your greenhouse, maintain proper temperatures and humidity, and select the right heating systems. Here at Greenhouse Catalog, we’ve got just everything you need to do the job right!

Categories
Greenhouse Supplies

Summer Garden Checklist

We’ve finally reached Summer!!  Here are some basic things to do in your garden to maintain it and extend the color.  Happy Gardening!

Mulch:  Spreading a 2-inch-deep layer of mulch over your soil is one of the best things you can do for your garden. The mulch blankets the ground, shielding the soil from the sun. This keeps it cooler, so your plant roots are happier, and prevents moisture loss from evaporation. There are so many organic options of mulch. Shredded wood, pine straw, a mix of grass clippings and shredded leaves, or any other organic matter is going to help your soil in the long run as it decomposes and adds to your soil structure. mulch-greenville-sc-2[1]

Weeds:  Many pesky weeds love summer heat and quickly take the jump from tiny to gigantic. It’s important to pull them from your garden, because weeds steal moisture and nutrients from your plants. Many weeds also encourage insect pests and diseases to pop up in your garden.  Weeds are easiest to pull when they’re young and small. They also come out of the ground easiest when the soil is moist. Another reason to get them while they’re young: you can stop weeds from producing seeds. A single dandelion plant can produce 2,000 seeds in a year. A weed such as lamb’s quarters can produce 150,000 seeds in a year. That’s a lot of future weeding you can save yourself from doing!  Remove spent blooms from many of your annuals and perennials, and you might see more flowers! This process, called deadheading, prevents plants from producing seeds so they put more energy into beautiful blooms.  Deadheading cuts back on future efforts, too, for plants that self-seed. Perennials (such as columbine, coneflower, cup plant, false sunflower, garlic chives, and verbena) and annuals (such as datura, flowering tobacco, kiss-me-over-the-garden-gate, larkspur, and spider flower) can self-seed to the point of producing too many weeds in the garden.picking the weeds, please have a look at my similar images of this subject

Watch for Pests:  Like weeding, keeping an eye on pests and diseases in your yard should be done all year. But midsummer seems to be particularly popular for these gardening obstacles.  Some of the more common midsummer problems to watch for include:

  • Black spot
  • Cucumber beetles
  • Grasshoppers
  • Japanese beetles
  • Powdery mildew
  • Rust
  • Squash bugs
  • Tomato hornworms

Water:  If you experience dry summers, or a dry weather pattern, you may wish to water your garden to keep it looking its best.  Most common garden plants prefer an average of 1 inch of water a week. It’s best to apply that inch all at once to encourage plant roots to sink down more deeply in the soil.  When watering, apply water directly to the ground rather than getting a plant’s foliage wet; water sitting on the leaves can lead to disease. Soaker hoses are great for this!

illustration_2009_04_30_garden_watering[1]

Add Color with Summer Annuals:  Once summer heat arrives, many spring-blooming annuals such as pansy, viola, and osteospermum fade. Make your yard look its best by pulling out the spent plants and replacing them with heat-loving varieties such as angelonia, lantana, ageratum, coleus, pentas, portulaca, salvia, sweet potatoloving annuals grow quickly in warm temperatures and will soon provide a beautiful burst of color.Summer Annuals 1124[1]

Some more summer bulbs include: calla, canna, and dahlia which are surefire ways to add color and drama to your landscape all summer long. These varieties are tender, so if you live in a Zone where they’re not hardy, plant them after all danger of frost has passed. Once temperatures rise, they grow quickly. Dahlia-Gallery-Mix[1]

Pinch Mums and Other Late Perennials:  Keep mums, sedums, asters, and other fall-blooming perennials standing tall by pinching the top inch or two of new growth. You can do so up to the Fourth of July.  Pinching the tops of the plant typically gives you a more compact, sturdy specimen. It may also give you more blooms from the sideshoots that develop, though the blooms are typically a little smaller and appear a couple of weeks later.  Other perennials that you can pinch in May and June:

  • Balloon flower
  • Bee balm
  • Goldenrod
  • Joe Pye weed
  • Perennial sunflower
  • Phlox
  • Russian sage
  • Remove Faded Flowers

Raise Your Mower:  Raise the height of your lawn-mower blade if you have cool-season grasses such as Kentucky bluegrass, ryegrass, or fescues. More leaf surface keeps the plants healthier during hot, dry weather.

Start a Fall Vegetable Garden:  Vegetables fall into two basic categories: Cool-season and warm-season. The warm-season varieties — tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, cucumbers, summer squash — are all going now. Once temperatures cool, these plants will fade.  Enjoy continued harvests by planting cool-loving vegetable seeds, such as broccoli, carrots, kohlrabi, lettuce, and spinach, now so you can enjoy fresh, delicious harvests this Autumn. raised-vegetable-garden-beds[1]

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Greenhouse Supplies

June Gardening and Greenhouse Tips

Seasonal Opportunities:

When you are able to set out your tomato plants, remove the lower leaves and bury in a trench, leaving the top tuft of leaves showing. This gives the plant additional roots and strength. Remember that planting seeds in cold soil can promote disease and slow germination. Plant new starts inside a black plastic pot that has the bottom cut out and is half buried in soil to protect the plant from cutworms and to warm the soil. Everything grows very fast as the weather warms, so keep your garden weeded to give your crop optimum water and nutrients. Stressed or sickly plants invite pests and diseases. Seed fast-maturing crops every two weeks for a continual harvest. This is also an excellent time to take cuttings fort he greenhouse. Root cuttings in coconut coir on your heating mat.

Aesthetic Herb Thymes:

Give yourself a special treat this summer by adding the beauty, color and flavor of flowers to your summer salads, ice cubes and cool drinks. Some flowers to have growing in your garden include: borage (cucumber flavor), nasturtiums (sweet and spicy), chive blossoms (sweet, subtle onion flavor), calendula (saffron color), rose petals (fragrant, calming) and common orange daylily (fresh green been flavor). Also try honeysuckle, daisies, pansies, carnations, cornflowers, gladioli and geraniums. Pick fresh each day, rinse quickly under cold water and remove pistils, stamens and white base before adding to your finished dish. Young violet leaves can also be used, they contain three times the vitamin A of spinach and five times the vitamin C of orange juice! Enjoy!

Cooling the greenhouse can be done by using a shade cloth or placing a couple of black buckets of water inside for evaporation, as well as spraying plants and walkways. Our greenhouse can also be picked up and moved into the shade. If you are closing the greenhouse for the summer, this would be the perfect time to empty, clean, disinfect, sterilize soil and do repairs; review previous winter/spring season and related expenses; and plan and buy supplies for the coming fall and winter season. Have you outgrown your greenhouse? Now would be the perfect time to add an extension.

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Greenhouse Supplies

Community Garden: Adapt8 and Marion-Polk Food Share

2014-05-23 MPFS

We teamed with MPFS back in 2014 and provided use of our 16′ x 20′ Solexx Conservatory Greenhouse to help them get a jump start on the seedling starts for their Community Garden.

Seedlings started for Marion County Food BankSeedlings started for Marion County Food Bank

It was estimated by Jared Hibbard-Swanson, MPFS Youth Farm Manager, that they were able to grow about 5000 plants over the course of the 3 months for their Youth Farm and had a great experience in doing so.

MPFS Youth Farm is a program that seeks to improve the quality, diversity and stability of our local food system by training Salem area young adults to grow food and run a small farm business.  All of the youth who participated in our program in 2014 were able to acclimate a strong commitment to fighting for a fair food system and a few of them even saw themselves working directly in food production to bring nutritious and safe food to the community.

Jared also noted that throughout 2014, the Youth Farm had donated over 2,500 pounds of fresh produce to MPFS pantries and meal sites while selling another 2,500 pounds to support their business

2014-05-23 MPFS all loaded up

It was so great to support MPFS with donated canned goods in the food barrel we had here onsite. We were able to join in to provide healthy fresh produce for those in need. It’s a small thing we can all do to help those in need and together WE CAN make an impact.

Please donate to your local food banks to help make a difference in your communities.

You can learn more about Marion-Polk Food Share Programs at:

http://www.marionpolkfoodshare.org/

Or by visiting their Facebook page at:

https://www.facebook.com/yourfoodshare?fref=ts

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Greenhouse Supplies

Container Gardening and the Advantage of Adding a Pot Latch

So many people now are enjoying container gardening, whether planting flowers or herbs. By using a Pot Latch you increase the amount of space that you are able to use by getting your smaller pots up off the ground and mounting to a fence or post in your yard.

Planting with Pot Latch

The other benefits of growing vertically include: the controlling of potential pests as they are right in front of you and harvesting is made easier as there is no stooping or hunching over.

It increases accessibility for gardeners with disabilities because they can tend to and pick from a chair or garden seat. You also will have lest waste not having fruits hiding under lush growth.

We are running a special right now on our Pot Latch; Buy One Get One Free. Follow this link to our web page to place your order for our Pot Latches and the quantity that will work for your specific needs to get growing vertically!

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Greenhouse Supplies

Gardening and Memorial Weekend

Memorial Day weekend is known to some gardener’s as the start of planting season. Late May is a safety zone; a projected end to any frost. If you are trying a garden out for the first time this year, here are some answers to questions you may have.

Flowers

When planting flowers in your garden during the summer you may ask: What is the difference between an annual and a perennial?Annual Marigolds Things that bloom all summer are annuals and they give you the most color. Perennials return year after year, but they don’t give you color all summer long. Perennial Hydrangeas It’s easy to make a selection when purchasing flowers based on what looks beautiful, but something important to think about is what each plant needs. Some require the sun and others require the shade.

Vegetables

What is the easiest vegetable to plant in my garden? Starter plants such as cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes and beans, are very simple to plant from seeds (tip: everything you need to know is right on the back of the seed packets), just remember to keep your garden weeded and fertilized with cow manure or organic fertilizer.

New Garden

For planting trees / shrubs you may wonder the best size of the hole to dig.  You want to make sure that the hole you dig is one and one half to two times the size of the root ball.  You will also want to make sure the area in which you are planting has good drainage.  You can fill the hole/pit with water and check that it drains out in 6-8 hours and there should be no problems. Finally, when planting, just make sure that the root ball is setting about 1″-2″ above the soil level so that the air reaches the root system.

New planted tree

Follow this link and take a look back at our website and all the books we carry for more information from gardening how to, composting, plant diseases, container growing and more.

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Greenhouse Supplies

Tips for Successful Growing

One sunny morning , you might feel an irresistible urge to plant your garden. Before you pick up a trowel or open a seed packet, check out these hints to help you succeed.

Transplanting Seedlings
Whether it’s a flat of bedding plants from a nursery or seedlings that started indoors, you don’t want the transition from pots to garden bed to induce transplant shock. Always handle seedlings by their leaves. Leaves will grow back.

Hardening Off
Hardening off gradually introduces seedlings to the conditions in your garden. Bring all seedlings—store-bought and homegrown—outdoors and expose them to a steadily increasing amount of sun, wind, and temperatures lower or higher than what they were used to indoors. This will take about 2 weeks. Don’t rush it.

When to Plant
The ideal time to plant is when it’s overcast, with rain in the forecast and no frosts or heat waves expected. If conditions don’t cooperate, then try to plant in the late afternoon or early evening to minimize the time the seedlings bake in the sun. The day before planting, water the soil so that it is moist, this helps make planting easier and also gives your seedlings fertile ground to get a good start.

In the Ground
Keep your seedlings in the shade until you’re actually ready to plant each one. Don’t pull a plant out of its container until you’ve dug the hole for it. If you can’t easily pull it out of its container by the leaves, hold the pot in one hand, flip it upside down, and give it a sharp tap on the bottom. The root ball should slip out into your other hand. Snip away any damaged roots with scissors or pruners. If the roots are a solid mass, gently tease some away from the center, trying not to break them. Firm the soil around your seedlings, but don’t press so hard that you compact it. Give each seedling a thorough watering.

The First Days
Your seedlings have become established when you see healthy new growth. This can take a few days to a week, depending on the weather. Wilted leaves or drooping stems can be symptoms of transplant shock. Seedlings can go into transplant shock if they weren’t hardened off completely or if the weather is extreme. Most plants recover in a few days; but until they do:

  • Check that the soil is firmly around the plants so that no air pockets are drying out the roots.
  • Protect the transplants from sun and strong winds with row covers, sheets, or cloches.
  • Water only if the top inch of the soil is dry. Don’t water if the soil is already wet; it won’t help.

Planting Depth
Plant seeds too deeply, and they may never germinate. Plant them too shallowly, and the topsoil might dry out during germination. Generally, you can plant a large seed at a depth equal to three times its diameter (not its length). Seeds of peas, squashes, and sunflowers and those of similar size are considered large seeds. Plant smaller seeds about 1/8 inch deep. The seed packet will give the proper planting depth for that particular seed.

Some seeds need light to germinate, so you can’t bury them. Either sift fine soil over them or leave them uncovered. But make sure the seeds make firm contact by pressing them into the soil.

Happy gardening and check back on our website for gardening accessories.