Friday, July 29, 2011

Finally staring the foundation hole for the dome

It's been a long time since we've had a dome update but we've finally started digging for the foundation hole.  More info in the near future!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Aquaponic greenhouse summer update

It's been a really long time since I've done an update on the greenhouse so I put together a video show the various plants that are growing the summer.

Hello Everyone,

I’m a bit overdue with an update on the aquaponic setup in the Harbor Freight greenhouse.

Cucumbers love the heat.  These older leaves have some brown spots from aphids but the rest of the vines have grown up into the cross braces and make a really nice canopy area.  This year I’m only growing the smaller pickling cukes.  They grow fast, produce a lot of fruit, and are resistant to powdery mildew.  Last year we had 264 cukes from 2 plants and are on target to have a higher yield this year!

The cherry tomatoes are also doing very well.  This one plant has huge clusters that contain about 50 tomatoes each.  There are about 250 pieces on this one plant with more areas starting to flower.  The clusters have gotten so heavy that I had to tie each one up to the main support line so that they don’t tear themselves off of the stalk. 

Last year I grew an heirloom tomato called Brandy Wine.  They were huge and delicious, but were prone to cracking and getting mold in the cracks.  This year I’m trying Amish Paste tomatoes.   I like them much better since they are far smaller and haven’t been cracking. 
The vines probably produce the same amount of weight, but there is a higher quantity spread out over time.  There are 2 plants in the greenhouse and they are on target to produce 50 tomatoes each.

Each year I grow a couple of bell peppers.  They grow well, but don’t produce any more than a few peppers each, which is on par with our regular garden.

This is the second year I’ve tried growing eggplant.  They grow well and produce flowers.  Then the leaves start turning white and the plants eventually die off.  I’m not sure what is cause of it is.

It’s too hot during the summer to grow lettuce so I let this one plant go to seed.  It will produce more than enough seeds to use for the fall planting and also for next spring.

The strawberries were also done producing in the spring.  They are now sending out runners which I will let them take root, producing more plants for next year.  Once I get enough runners, I will start cutting any others back so that the energy will stay in the main plant.

In the original 8-inch tube grow beds, I planted carrots again.  This time I’m trying a Danver’s half-long variety instead of the standard length.  Hopefully they won’t hit the bottom again!

The automation system is still working well including the 6-way sequencing valve.  The automatic fish feeder is also working well with just a few signs of rust.  The fish are fed just the right amount based on the water temperature.

Thanks for watching.  I’ll leave you with some underwater footage of the fish.  Please subscribe to receive updates about future videos!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Get to the point

Sometimes we see a few critters wandering around the farm and they usually keep their distance.  This guy didn't care that I walked right up to him to take this video.