Indoor greenhouse ideas?

Redwood Ryan

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Hey everyone,

Since winter is on it's way I've been thinking about ways to make an indoor greenhouse. I have one currently, kind of one, but it does not have lights. I would like one that can get very humid for my tropicals, yet still be able to give the trees the extra light for the winter. Any ideas or pictures? Thanks!
 
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What I do

I live in zone5 IL., and each fall my trees make the annual migration to a room set aside for my indoor plants.Since it's a basement and most either stay humid and/or leak humidity isn't a problem. I light the room with the 4ft. floro light assemblies bought anywhere. I usually leave the lights on a cycle of 2-3 days on and 1-2 off. I water usually every 3rd or 4th day. I have done this for approx 15 years, since I moved back to IL. from MS. my only big IPM problems have been occasional spider mites, scale or white fly. Since its a small room I just shut it off from the rest and spray. Here's what I do for the winter. Hope it helps.:) Good Luck
 

bisjoe

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My tropicals winter well in normally our sun-free fall-spring climate in a garden window, where natural light comes in from the top and 3 sides, and faces the south. I think it was about $400 and took me half a day to install several years ago. For humidity I have a running water fountain on the bottom shelf, and it helps to be next to the kitchen which has additional humidity from the dishwasher and sink being used.

Like this:
 

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spectatr

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For my orchids I use one of the pop up style green houses in the basement in which I have a small humidifier I have to refill daily, a portable electric heater with a thermostat and I have a 4 foot long T 5 4 bulb light and for a lower shelf with lower light orchid a T-8 2 bulb light. I has worked well for me for several years and would work for tropicals. You have to play with the amount of light, heat and humidity but it should work for you.

The enclosure gives you much more control than an open air set up.
 

Redwood Ryan

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Thank you all for the replies! Great ideas!

For my orchids I use one of the pop up style green houses in the basement in which I have a small humidifier I have to refill daily, a portable electric heater with a thermostat and I have a 4 foot long T 5 4 bulb light and for a lower shelf with lower light orchid a T-8 2 bulb light. I has worked well for me for several years and would work for tropicals. You have to play with the amount of light, heat and humidity but it should work for you.

The enclosure gives you much more control than an open air set up.
How do you hang your lights over the greenhouse? Are they actually in it, or hanging above it?
 

spectatr

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I have regular metal Home Depot shelving inside the popup. It is a tall four shelf set and I am using only 2 of them in the popup. There are two shelves the light for the lower is attached to the wooden shelf above. For the upper shelf I made a frame from 2x2 lumber and the light for the upper shelf is attached to that. The wooden frame sits on the floor and is bolted to the legs of the shelf so I can move the entire contraption as needed.
 

Redwood Ryan

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I have regular metal Home Depot shelving inside the popup. It is a tall four shelf set and I am using only 2 of them in the popup. There are two shelves the light for the lower is attached to the wooden shelf above. For the upper shelf I made a frame from 2x2 lumber and the light for the upper shelf is attached to that. The wooden frame sits on the floor and is bolted to the legs of the shelf so I can move the entire contraption as needed.
Very interesting. Would it be possible for you to upload a picture of it? I would love to try to build it.
 

Bonsai Nut

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Ryan; depending on what you are planning to grow, LED fixtures might be a good solution. LED's have come down a lot in price while becoming a lot brighter - they last MUCH longer than flourescent bulbs, are more energy efficient, and don't generate nearly as much heat. Oh, and they are much harder to break, too.

There are now tons of different LED options out there, but here is a place to start looking. Currently the cost of LED's is dropping by 50% every 3 years. It is not a question of "if" but "when" LED lighting will replace all incandescent and flourescent lighting in residential applications.
 

Amenson

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I just finished this one. It is an old reptile cage that I made a while ago that I reassembled with mylar on the walls and a pair of fluorescent lights. The floor has aluminum sheet pans to catch extra water. I made the legs from PVC tube/flanges.

I just ordered a internet connected irrigation system to run the lights, mister and maybe automated watering if I can't find a tree sitter while traveling.:cool:
 

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