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I have a large area in my basement that still has a dirt floor. I would like to experiment with an indoor green house. Any ideas on this?
By Pauline from Emsdale, Ontario
Sorry, but my opinion is don't. Spiders get everywhere. I know, because my aunt has one.
Go for it! I built a double platform using 2X4's and a sheet of plywood cut in half; 1/2 sheet for each platform. I have fluorescent lights on chains that can be raised & lowered according to plant height. It is important to keep the lights close together (I have five 4 ft. lights on each level) and also close to the plants. The lights also create some heat so keep this in mind. You don't want a room too hot but you don't want it too cold either. Also, do you have mice since you have a dirt floor? It's okay if you do but you will need to set your platform up on metal coffee cans so that the mice cannot get to your plants. They will literally mow them down once they start growing.
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I would like to know how to make an indoor greenhouse that uses grow lights.
Hardiness Zone: 5a
One month ago, I built a bottom heated seed bed with overhead grow lights that I keep in my cellar. Here's an address with the instructions how to do it.
It was a helpful guide for me. I used ordinary shop lights, and put in one cool white, and one warm white tube to give a wide spectrum of light. I put plastic curtains around it. Shower curtains will work, and I laid a thin sheet of insulation board over the top of the frame. This is a picture I took when the project was nearly completed. I have a large variety of seedlings growing in it now. They are vigorous with a nice shade of green. I'm very pleased with the results. Good luck. (03/29/2010)
I created an indoor greenhouse in my bedroom during the winter by our big windows facing south. I have been using grow lights, but the house barely gets over 70 in the winter. The plants and dwarf trees are growing OK, but I am wondering if light, water, and fertilizer are enough? Do I need more heat on them, like the summer outdoors?
Hardiness Zone: 5b
Selah from IN
Keep in mind that except for the equatorial zone, there are seasons, and most plants need a cool rest period to be able to bloom in spring. Their spring. For example, South American cacti bloom in our fall, and need a cool rest period afterward. Have a look at my dad's cacti at http://dawna.com and see what can be done without grow lights or heat even in the snowy alps.
I have a similar set up in my bedroom which is well below 70 degrees and my African Violets are blooming and thriving. (01/30/2009)