|Greenhouse will go on far side of beds|
It’s never ending around here. A week doesn’t go by where we don’t have some crazy project in the works. And it’s always a mad rush trying to find the time to get everything done before winter. Some projects just seems to take on a life of their own and end up getting completed fairly quickly, like our rabbit hutch. I was rather amazed how quickly Tom got that built. Other projects just seem to be waiting in the starting gate.
Our next big project is a greenhouse. We really need one before fall. This year I planted our peppers in pots because I want to keep them for next year. Our weather in the U.S. generally gets a bit too cold for them so we treat most of them as annuals here. Well, what better way to save money than to not have to buy pepper seeds anymore? So this year I planted them in 5 gallon pots with the hopes to keep them in our non-existent greenhouse over the winter. We know where we want to put the greenhouse. It’s just a matter of clearing and leveling the area. Though we don’t really have to “level” it as it’s fairly level. But clearing it is whole other project. There’s an old raised bed, a rickety potting bench with all sorts of junk stacked on it, couple hundred square feet or stacked pavers (for our front walkway project), a wood pile, a mini greenhouse that I’ve outgrown, and two compost bins. Oh, and we’ll probably have to move our fig tree. Not sure where though.
We’re not going to be buying a greenhouse. To save money we’re actually going to build it from the ground up so to speak. Since we don’t have very cold winters we’ll just be using greenhouse film instead of the polycarbonate panels, which would cost an arm and a leg. Not to mention my experience with those panels is that they yellow after just a couple of years and get brittle so they end up needing to be replaced about as often as the film. If I don’t need to spend the money on the panels, why do so? My dream greenhouse of course would be a steel frame one with glass glazing. But alas, I don’t have several thousand to throw at something like that.
What I’m really excited about is that once we have the greenhouse I can start growing starts for other people as a side business.
4 thoughts on “What’s on the Horizon?”
Country Mouse built hers from used glass doors they picked up at a building supply place. There's a place in Oakland, I think, that sells stuff like that, or you might find something on craigslist or freecycle. Why add more plastic to the world?
(P.S. go to our blog to see some of her greenhouse posts)
Town Mouse, that's a good point, and we hadn't thought about that. We went to Urban Ore in Berkeley and they wanted over $300 for just the broken windows. Windows that weren't broke are much, much more. We just can't afford that. It's a tough balance between being green and saving green. Because being green is so stylish now, it also costs a higher premium – even for not-so-gently used items. I guess we have some things to figure out.
I hope your greenhouse comes together faster than our shed…we keep getting distracted by other projects. Do take a peek at Country Mouses though, it's along the lines of what we're planning, a hybrid greenhouse/shed (we need both, but don't have room with all our hills here). They did a lovely job, it turned out beautifully.
We need to build a greenhouse, too. Urban Ore is usually a bust for building materials, the pricing almost being like Ohmega Salvage's. I get my large plastic pots from there at this point, and the occasional large rubbermaid trashcan for compost storage.
I think we're going to reuse the white corrugated vinyl roofing over the patio (put up illegally, slowly collapsing) for some of the walls, and then a lot of plexiglass provided we can find it used someplace. There was a property nearby that had windows out at the curb and of course the truck was broke down so we couldn't scavenge them.
I am going to start scanning Craigslist for this stuff, and try to keep an eye out for construction projects where they've put a lot of waste out curbside.
For used building materials there's also Builders Resource over in SF, I think on Amador? I've not been there. And Habitat for Humanity has a general store in Oakland or San Leandro. http://www.stopwaste.org is a good resource for repurposed materials.
For awhile, I was even considering just going to Pick-n-Pull and seeing if I could scavenge windshields and hatch-back doors w/ windows, for the roof part of the greenhouse and some walls. It's a harsh day of work doing that though, and they tend to really rip ya on their pricing, considering one uses one's own elbow-grease in removing stuff from the cars there. I may well revisit that, though. Auto glass pebbles up if you break it, which is a good thing if heaven forbid a neighbor's tree branch comes down.
Comments are closed.