Early Sowings..A guilty secret?? (part 2 )

Well Folks its been a month since the first Blog. The frame inside the Greenhouse has been extended to form a L shape across the end and partly down one side. Initially a small heated propagator was being used to both heat the original space plus start seeds off . This worked really well and managed to keep a steady 10deg with only insulation after dark over the frame. Cheep as Chips Too at 15 watts a Hr consumption, about 5p a day at my full elec tariff. Now the frame is 2  1/2 times its size this wasn’t sufficient to keep the temp up on its own so a fan heater was placed at one end plus a baffle in front of it to defuse the air flow. So far with the conditions iv had the fan heater set in its 2 Kw setting(thermostatically controlled) its using about 20p a day to run.

As of this morning the tomatoes (apart from one i lost to thinning at the neck) are all doing fine and some Sun Gold are showing the third leaf. I am only keeping the temp to 10/11 deg as a minimum so i get stocky plants and so far have moved them only once into deeper pots . Cabbage, Kale,Onions,Leeks all are progressing well and have been pricked out into ether pots or modules. The routine is to cover the frame at dusk with insulation (old sofa cushions and polystyrene sheeting i had left over from the house work a treat ) then at a civilised  HR remove in the morning. I will do Part 3 in about a month and let you know if Jan sowings were worth the effort and cost to me.

Happy Growing Friends . Simondo :-)

15 Responses

  1. karenp says:

    well Simondo ;-) your last blog encouraged me to start sowing my tomatoes early too, did sow what i started in last years seed sowing diary, then went onto sow my toms, mine are on the windowsill in my dining room which is never really that warm a room, i,m growing this year Alicante and Roma, these are now onto thier 3rd leaf and i,ve also potted them deep into modules, i thinned these out so now have 15 of each, i do keep turning them though each day otherwise they lean towards the light.
    in the garden i do have a large coldframe which can be heated but all the seedlings in there require an unheated greenhouse or coldframe.
    sounds like your really enjoying your experiment and am looking forward in your next installment :yes: :good:

    • SIMONDO says:

      Lovely job Karen.. i don’t have the indoor light and room to raise all the stuff so thats why i decided to do mine in the frame. Folks who have a conservatory or some south facing windowsills might as well use them :yes:
      Still a way to go yet Karen but … Looking ok Sooooooo Far :good:

  2. gertie says:

    Oooh this is encouraging…I shall start mine in the Glassroom NOW.
    Thanks Simon :good:

  3. bizzylizzy says:

    well simon I’m now falling over tray’s , pot’s and propagators :whistle: , living room window , conservatory is now like entering an assault coarse which I know will slowly get me down with all the mess :wacko: , but if need’s must :yes:

  4. Beanstew says:

    Watching this with keen interest, all you brave souls! Its that gap we still have to manage before the last frost that unmans me. Up here its the end of May usually – though don’t think anyone is foolhardy enough to bet on the weather anymore. Seriously, hope you are all wildly successful, and I am left gnashing my teeth at my own cowardice. Will be starting this week.

    • SIMONDO says:

      This experiment is of corse very weather dependant if the things I’m raising early are reliant on going out Sheila, but i fully intend to be prepared to come up with or use existing solutions iv got at my disposal. Under any circumstance i would like yourself be putting things out when it was possible and then protect if things turned a little on the …. Coooool side :-)
      It is helpful that one isn’t living in colder climes ,BON CORAGE Sheila ;-)

  5. Hayley says:

    I have to confess that I chickened out of sowing when you did Simon ;-) Living in the east of the country often means we suffer from cold easterly winds and late frosts. This week I have sown all my tomatoes though, no germination as yet however.
    Your seedlings are doing well with the routine, keep us up to speed with how they do :yes:

  6. I have sown some toms, leeks and aubergines – however, I expect to fail miserably as they’re in my unheated g/h but I’ve wrapped them all in bubblewrap :whistle: I suppose I might have wrapped them in bubblegum! We’ll see…
    Glad all the little seedlings I’ve just read about are doing well :good:

  7. roly says:

    I haven’t set anything in the greenhouse yet going to start next week the thing is I will have my solid fuel heater on in the daytime but it will be back to unheated at night

    a bit unsure to sow many seeds until the weather warms up what’s your take on this should I be sowing seeds now regardless of night heat or should I be patient and wait another couple of weeks that is question :scratch:

    • Beanstew says:

      Roly, if you have the room, items like cans of water or lg bags of compost will absorb heat during the day while the stove is on, and release it at night to keep the temperature up. Bubblewrap will make a big difference, and dare I suggest the use of humble candles to keep frost off if necessary?

  8. SIMONDO says:

    Hi Roly
    I’m doing the early sowings in my G house based on the fact that i can provide a heated place 24/7 if needs be. I normally would sow and germinate a few things in the house and grow stuff on using window sills anyhow in Feb.
    If you have somewhere that can stay above 10 deg at the lowest then most things will be ok i should think. You don’t have to sow in the G house now.. you can pop stuff out as you need and weather allows so i can’t see the point in leaving things that are useful to get going in Feb if you can ..Toms..onions..cabbage to name a few. Your shout as you will know the situation your end better than me. :-)

Leave a Reply