Sunday, July 7, 2019

Growing in Greenhouses

Why use greenhouses? For me it's mainly for pest control. Secondarily, to control soil moisture. And thirdly, to provide more heat to certain crops. 

Unlike much of the world, Hawaii is a difficult place to produce certain crops. Most squashes and cucumbers get routinely destroyed by pickleworm. Slicing tomatoes get stung by fruit flies. Sweet peppers, okra, and lima beans seem to require more heat than I get at my farm. Cowpeas do better with drier soil. 

Lima beans. Bush type in the front row. Climbing varieties in the back. 

I'm trying this year to grow food in three 10' by 20' greenhouses. One now has summer squash and cucumbers, all parenocarpic or with parnenocarpic tendencies. Since it's a night time moth that inflicts most of the damage to these veggies, I plan to leave the greenhouse ends open during the day to airflow, and closed at night to block the moths. That's the plan, so we'll see if it works. 

Zucchini squash up front. Cucumbers starting along the wall behind the squash plants. 

Greenhouse #2 has tomatoes and sweet peppers. Fruit fly is the main pest, which is active during the daylight hours. So this greenhouse will have screened end walls. 

The third greenhouse is planted in lima beans right now. I haven't had much luck harvesting lima beans although the plants grow well enough. General opinion is that they needs more heat units, thus the reason I'm trying a greenhouse. It gets much warmer inside a greenhouse compared to out in the gardens. 

1 comment:

  1. This is extremely interesting to me. My husband has said we should have a greenhouse large enough for the entire garden! That's obviously not realistic, but I have yet to conquer a number of problems and wonder if a greenhouse would help. I hope you keep us posted on what you learn!