Glasshouse Crop 2022

Seeds Sown in rockwool trays in electric propagator on 27th march

Seedlings showing on 30th March

I grew these on on my windowsill in large 19 litre aluminium catering trays. Terra Aquatica TriPart plant food: 1 ml/litre each of Grow, Micro and Bloom.

Growing Phase

Planted out in my glasshouse on 24th April. Bucket size is 25 litres and the “soil” is perlite.

Watermelons (left) and melons (right)

1.8 ml/litre of Grow, 1.2 ml/litre of Micro and 0.6 ml/litre of Bloom for the growing phase. The drip system is on a timer and runs 3 times a day: 07:00, 14:00 and 19:00. I also run an air pump for 15 minutes before and during the watering to aerate the water in the tank.

The plants grew like crazy. The cucumbers were showing flowers on the 10 May.
Changed the feed mix to pre flowering: 2 ml/Litre of Grow and Micro, and 1.5 ml/litre of Bloom.

Cucumber flower. Leaf showing damage, I removed it.

First cucumber on 26th May.

Flowering and fruiting phase

Food ratio changed again to 0.8 ml/litre of Grow, 1.6 ml/litre of Micro and 2.4 ml/litre of Bloom.

lots of cucumbers 9th June. 10cm long.
Watermelon Mini Love 9th June. 5 cm diameter.
Melon Pipito 9th June. 5 cm long.

Tomatoes (Gardener’s Delight) are on their third truss although none have ripened yet. The Padron peppers are just starting to flower

Clematis x cartmanii ‘Early Sensation’

Clematis x cartmanii ‘Early Sensation’

Early (April – May) flowering evergreen clematis with glossy finely divided leaves and masses of 7.5 cm (3″) white flowers with green centers. Supposedly scented, I couldn’t smell anything from the flowers. Some people say the whole plant has a citrus smell but again I couldn’t get anything.

Grows to about 2 meters and can be grown in a large pot. Requires a west or south facing wall with protection from wind. You can grow it up trellis or as just let it sprawl.

Glasshouse Crops

Dutch bucket system

I’m growing cucumbers, melons, padron peppers, tomatoes and watermelons this year.

I decided to use soil-less media (perlite) with an automatic watering system. The pots are 25 liters, the overflow pipes are 15 mm pex and the return pipe is 50 cm plastic pipe.

Pot and water/feed tank

I lined the pots with a generous amount of gardening fleece to contain the perlite and also to make it easier to remove at the end of the season.

The silver container is a 100 liter plastic storage box which is painted black to keep out the sunlight to stop the water going green. The silver layer is insulating sheet to keep the water warm at night and cool during the day, it also reduces the light.

The water tank has a submersible garden pool pump that pumps water though the blue hose. Water lines come off the blue hose for each pot and the water is delivered to each pot with drip lines.

pot showing perlite and drip lines

The tank also has an air pump to aerate the water and an aquarium heater to keep the water at 20 degrees C on cool nights.

Acer palmatum ‘Orange Dream’

Really nice small (3 meters) tree with orange green leaves in the spring fading to green as the season progresses. It grows fast and is reliable. It’s also got orange autumn colour. This is a type of Japanese Maple.

It’s in a 55 cm pot.

Acer palmatum ‘Orange Dream’

I bought mine in Lidl about 7 years ago.

The climber, also a Lidl special, behind it is Clematis ‘Błękitny Anioł’ (syn. ‘Blue Angel’), a Polish variety with blueish violet flowers in July. I remove the growing tips after 4 or 5 leaves to encourage bushiness; I get a lot of small flowers over a longer period.

Clematis ‘Błękitny Anioł’

Geodesic Dome Greenhouse


Now that I’ve moved back to the country I’ve got plans for all sorts of projects. The first one is building a Geodesic Dome Greenhouse from timber.


I’ve spent the past 6 weeks resarching

  • Sizes: settled on 8 meter diameter
  • Build: kit or DIY. Settled on DIY
  • Glazing struts: wood, plastic pipe or tubular metal.
  • Joints and Hubs: DIY hubs, off-the-shelf hubs, no hubs.
  • Glazing: triple-wall poly-carbonate, polyethylene,
  • Raised beds: materials, height, width.
  • Foundations: concrete piers, slab
  • Internal Paths: width, materials.
  • Insulation: north wall insulation types, ground insulation, glazing.
  • Orientation: door will face north.
  • Double doors: keeping drafts out.
  • Vermin control: keeping mice and other beasties out.
  • Passive heating and cooling: GAHT, thermal vents, thermal mass.
  • Direct heating: wood chip composting, wind turbines.
  • Wood preservatives: Leitrim is usually very damp , organic material rots very fast.
  • Wood working tools: table saw, mitre saw, digital protractors, staplers, screws, etc.
  • Wood Type and Sizes: Species, planed, rough, treated, suppliers.
  • Maintenance: Does the build allow to easily repair the structure and individual glazing panels.

I’ve settled on a hub system from Geosota in Russia. Plans have arrived, I’m waiting on the hubs.

To buy: planed 4 x 2, paint, concrete, rebar, post shoes.

Future: Polytunnel plastic, I’d like to get the bubble wrap stuff if possible. Maybe some polycarbonate. Insulation. Soil insulation.