Monday, February 27, 2017

Andddddddddddddddd We have liftoff!

Well I can't claim that february was a very exciting month... cause it wasn't... but the very last day of the month brought me a surprise.  

But first let's go over the stats and info of february...

So It's February 27th. We had a VERY mild february here in Pa, It bounced around from 30 all the way to 74.

But here we go... some stats and info-

Average Exterior January Temp- 49 Degrees

Average Temp maintained in Greenhouse- 66.6 degrees

Average Humidity In Greenhouse- 77.4%

Max Temp- 91 Degrees

Max Humidity- 100%

Average propane use- 3 Gallons a Day

Times watered- 2 times

Times fertilized- 2 times

Pesticide used- 1 time

Blunders- 0 

Lessons Learned- 1

Total time spent in greenhouse- 6 hours total

So, as I talked about the amount of overcast days in january, february wasn't an improvement till the tail end of the month, besides that, I decided that saving twenty to 30 dollars on propane was foolish and cranked the heater up.

I was able to hit, and surpass my benchmark of 65 degrees.  I maintained 66.6 degrees. My propane use went down, and the days are getting longer, fast. If the amount if overcast type days would decrease, I would be in a pretty sweet spot. 

In the above image is february's day by day temperature as per my thermo data logger.  You can definitely see the trend towards the end of the month. Ignore that severe dip, The heater, albeit brand new is intermittently malfunctioning (more on that later).

So as it stands, The weather seems to be completely unpredictable.  We have marches average temperature, In february.  This is just a really weird year.  

Over the next couple of days I'm going to set all the automatic vent openers for 80 degrees, since the daytime highs are getting a bit too hot.  I'm hoping passive venting can carry me for a few more weeks, I would hate to try and control the power vent, and heat at the same time. 

As you can note, I did manage to lower the humidity in the greenhouse, this was done by running a dehumidifier around the clock.  I suspect I won't need this much longer once the greenhouse vents everyday and getting some air movement. 

And onto the exciting part... MY FIRST GREENHOUSE SCAPE!  I was gone for the weekend, I joined the great folks in region 2 for their winter symposium, and visited my good friend James Clancy.  I sort of expected to come home to a few scapes since the plants have definitely reached that size. Its still pretty cool. Smiling Cobra is listed as an Early.. so I expect a few more scapes to start showing up soon in the coming days.  

Since the daytime temps are getting higher, I am going to have to watch, and water more frequently. I have noticed some pots dry out quicker than others. 

The heater failure... Well I chalk this up to two things.  A cheap heater, and the humidity.  Let's start with the heater,  Its a 50000 btu Mr heater, it was 400 dollars.. Pretty much the cheapest thing you can get for the money, it's meant to be a intermittant garage heater in all reality. The failure has to do with a small vacuum port on the exhaust side of the unit.  The combustion process is hampered by the ultra high humidity causing excess emissions in the exhaust, clogging this port. Once it clogs the pressure switch doesn't see the vacuum, and then the unit wont fire. Cleaning this port weekly will become a new chore. 

Next year I will buy a UHE sealed combustion chamber unit that will be rated for a humid environment. 

So whats next?  March!  Higher temps (maybe.. february was warm), More Sun, More scapes... More fun! 

I have started to receive daylilies from the southern states, it's pretty cool to pot them up and try and find room for them lol! 

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