As we have been getting closer to freezing temperatures, I have been working a little faster to be ready for them. The last few weeks have found me trying to get the greenhouse prepared and ready for the winter. Initially, that included having Jeremy install automatic window openers on the remaining two ceiling window vents (2 of the windows already have these installed). These operate based on the inside temperature, and open wider to let out the hot air, trying to keep the internal temperature as close to 70 degrees as possible. I love 'em! They also seem to keep the windows closed tighter than the little sticks provided with the greenhouse. I also have been filling in cracks with expanding foam. Remember, we used free terracotta cinderblock-like bricks. It does help insulate and hold in heat, but it also makes a good place for bugs. .and a small rodent tunnelled in through the dirt and a break in the plastic (one small break in the WHOLE piece surrounding the entire greenhouse--and he found it!)
I was holding out last year, because I think the stuff is quite ugly. But I decided this year, after being eaten alive by fire ants who had enjoyed a summer home there, that I could certainly live with it. I hope to be ambitious enough to trim it down and paint it, so it won't be so eye catching.
I'm glad the first year in the greenhouse is over. I certainly feel more prepared for how things might work out this year--and eager to try some new things this year.
Last week I took some passion vine cuttings from a friend. I tried rooting some earlier this summer with varied success. This time I decided to experiement and try some in water and some using rooting hormone and soil.
I re-cut the ends and dipped them in rooting hormone (found at Lowes)
Then I stuck them down firmly in a small pot of soil. Hopefully, in a few weeks they will start to make roots.
Last winter I used an old glass shower door perched atop some leftover bricks for a shelf. This summer, I found the other shower door. I found some more bricks and put a second shelf up. It's amazing how strong these metal and glass doors are--and they are working perfectly for my purpose. I have since sowed some lettuce greens in small planters and they will stay on the top shelf, as well as some herbs.
I read in another blog that a woman was making cuttings from her basil plants and growing them in water. I was intrigued by this, and since I didn't sow any basil seeds earlier this greenhouse season, I decided to do an experiment to see if it works. I also stuck a few snips of oregano in there, since they got in the way of my snippers. You'll also notice the old glass spaghetti canister behind the basil. Those are the passion flower cuttings waiting for roots to happen. I think the vines are just beautiful!!