NWFGS 2015 – SUNGLO BOOTH

NWFGS 2015

2015 NWFGS – Come see us!

Sunglo Greenhouses will be attending the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show! If you came to visit us last year you’re in for a pleasant surprise this year! We are re-designing our booth and bringing some hands on displays to really show how strong and wonderful our product is! Not only will you be able to touch and see a Sunglo assembled but we are offering some killer NWFGS promotions! The 1000C – 8×10 greenhouse will be displayed so you can actually see how the greenhouses are made and experience one first-hand!


Here’s a look at our builders working hard on the 1000C demo model!

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Watch our 2015 NWFGS adventure on our Facebook page.


Sunglo greenhouses booth #701 is located on the 4th floor of the Seattle Convention Center on the other side of the breathtaking display gardens. We are on the corner of an isle so you can’t miss us!

NWFGS 2015 floor plan1

NWFGS Location

Need directions? Click the map on the left for directions to the convention center from the light rail, on foot, shuttle, etc.!

To see the entire NWFGS floor plan click here. And also visit the NWFGS website for a list of all the attending exhibitors and speakers.

We hope to see you there!

Introduction to hydroponics

Introduction to Hydroponics

 Alternative gardening techniques have recently taken off in the garden industry and for good reason. Aquaponics and hydroponics have become extremely popular and are a fun new way to provide food for you and your family. Not only are these techniques efficient but they are pretty low maintenance. This post is meant to teach you how hydroponic systems work, provide pros and cons and give some examples of a few systems that are on the market today. I’ll be covering aquaponics in the next month as well. I hope you enjoy :)

“Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture and is a method of growing plants using mineral nutrient solutions, in water, without soil. Terrestrial plants may be grown with their roots in the mineral nutrient solution only or in an inert medium, such as perlite or gravel.  It was introduced in the 1920s as a means of commercial plant production.

Hydroponic growing may not be for everyone. There are a variety of systems available today so do your research when deciding on a system. Most gardeners use hydro systems indoors like in a greenhouse or even in a garage/shed. But smaller systems can be placed outside. Some hydro systems come as complete kits and are designed for only a few plants or hundreds. There are many kits you can purchase and lots of DIY ideas.

The video below shows how to make your own small DIY hydro system.

With in-expensive materials and an overall small system, DIY is a great way for trial and error.

Introduction to hydroponicsIf you prefer to purchase your first hydro system I recommend something like this Garden-Of-Ease complete hydroponic system - Pictured on left. This system runs about $60. It’s smart to start slowly and with only a few plants so you don’t overwhelm yourself. Once you have the hang of it you can move to a more generous amount of plants.

Introduction to hydroponicsAnother great small system to start with is the Current Culture Solo6 system. Unlike the system above this one has 6 holes and a sleeker look. The housing is durable and all-around a much better quality than the lesser version above. It is a bit more expensive ranging around $400 but you can expand the system by attaching more modules of the same brand. It’s pretty cool! Contact us if you are interested in Current Culture products.

Once you feel comfortable with the smaller system research some larger ones. If you have a greenhouse or a specified area for growing measure the space so you can accurately find the right size hydro system to fill the growing area.

Introduction to hydroponicsSunglo carries Current culture products. They offer a good variety of sizes and are great for tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, etc., etc. Pictured on left – A Sunglo owner purchased the mid size Current Culture UC4XXL13 system to start in his 15×20 - 2100G model. This system has 4 large modules that nicely accommodate larger plants. The model #UC4XXL13 gives away a few things. The tells how many plant modules are included and the 13 tells how many gallons each module holds. Under Current hydro kits are complete systems including Introduction to hydroponics all of the PVC piping/tubing and a high quality air pump. And a year warranty gives you peace of mind. There are endless  possibilities of what you can grow but this customer chose to start with tomatoes. I myself would choose tomatoes as well! What kind of food would you grow? It’s a hard question to answer! As you can see from the pictures hydroponic growing has it’s upsides! The foliage is a rich green, abundant and lush. Compared to my tomato plant (pictured below right) that I grew almost exactly the same time as his. Introduction to hydroponicsThe difference in height is vast and his foliage puts mine to shame! The Current Culture UC4XXL13 system runs about $1000. Now think about how much food you could grow with that! You Introduction to hydroponicscould make your money back in food in a few short years. It is wise to do research not only on systems but on the plants you want to grow; what kind of nutrients they will Introduction to hydroponicsneed, how much light and even the germination time. Sunglo can help with a lot of these things. We offer full packages that include a greenhouse and the perfect size hydro system to fit. We also carry lighting and controls for your greenhouse. The full line of Current Culture nutrients is available as well. So look no further! We’ve got you covered! Garden stores that carry hydro products usually carry matching nutrients made by the same brand. Like how we carry Current Culture hydro systems and nutrient products.  Besides buying the starts or seeds there is really no other cost – These medium systems range only 50-100 watts.

Every decision we make in life has its pros and cons. So here are a few things to consider when deciding on your alternative gardening method:

PROS:

  • Weeds can’t grow
  • Most plant diseases are eliminated
  • Pests are less of a concern so pesticide usage goes down as well
  • Hydroponically grown food has been known to be more nutritional and taste better
  • Less water waste
  • Nutrients are more controlled therefore plants are more abundant & lush
  • Plants grow faster and have bigger yields
  • Plants can be placed closer together so less space is used comparatively to soil gardening

CONS:

  • There are limited varieties of plants that can be hydroponically grown
  • Setup and system costs can be very expensive
  • Hydroponics requires more technical knowledge and training than soil cultivation
  • If the watering system fails, plants will dry out and die rapidly

Current Culture has a great YouTube channel that features how-to and informational videos that are very useful. The video below shows how the Current Culture System is assembled.

 1 Current Culture UC6 System (pictured below on right) would fit great into a 10×10 – Sunglo Introduction to hydroponics1200C model (pictured on left) with room for a Introduction to hydroponicswater reservoir and a few potted or hanging plants. The current culture system and the Sunglo greenhouse can both expand. So once you have mastered hydroponic growing and you want to add to your plant collection you are able to extend your Sunglo greenhouse and purchase more modules to advance your hydro system. There are no limits!

Please call or e-mail Sunglo at 800-647-0606 or info@sunglogreenhouses.com for more information on Current Culture products or to receive a free hydro greenhouse estimate!

2014 Winter Photo Contest – Winners Announced!

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Contest Winners Announced

Sunglo’s 2014 winter photo contest was a success!

We really wanted to engage with our long time Sunglo owners and give our new greenhouse owners something to be excited about! ALL of the photo entries were beautiful and we had a lot of fun interacting with all of our contestants. Thank you for your entries and we hope you will all participate again next year!

 

After a long deliberation the Sunglo crew has chosen the winners:

**  Congratulations!  **

 

3rd Place: Ms. Sheisl-

To view the full photo album of this project click here.

Contest winners announced

 

2nd Place: Ms. Vanmeer-

To view the full photo album of this project click here.

Contest winners announced

 

  1st Place: Ms. Madden/Jacobson-

To view the full photo album of this project click here.

And visit her blog here.

Contest winners announced

 

We had a hard time choosing through these great photos! Here is a peek at some other entries –

2014 Winter Photo Entry
1700 Lean-to model. Learn more about lean-to greenhouses here.
2014 Winter Photo Entry
Happy Sunglo owners in their 1000 model. Learn more about the 1000 series here.
1200 Sunglo greenhouse
Beautiful 1200 model in AZ. Learn about the 1200 series here.
1700 Lean-to Sunglo greenhouse
Sunglo’s can hold a ton of snow! See details about this size lean-to greenhouse here.

 

 

 

Sunglo's 1000 model greenhouse
Beautiful Christmas bows on this 1000 series. Learn more here.
greenhouse gardening basics

Greenhouse Gardening Basics

Greenhouse Gardening – The Basics

A few basic items that we recommend you start off with and some words of encouragement!

 

The time has finally come. After all the hours of researching, sifting through greenhouse blogs and forums, having those off and on feelings about making the decision and debating whether or not you have the time and energy to even use one; You have purchased your own greenhouse! And frankly it should be one of the best decisions you made! Greenhouse’s not only give you a space to grow and overwinter plants but the enrichment gardening brings to people’s lives is incredible. And let’s not down play the fact that you will save a few bucks too! But once you have made it through the pain and hectic-ness of finding your perfect greenhouse, building the foundation, greenhouse assembly and the spendy electrician… where do you start? Greenhouse gardening is not as scary as it looks. The greenhouse itself will do a lot of the work for you. Light, air circulation, heat and controls are provided for you. Sunglo’s packages include lighting, ventilation system (for air circulation), heater, controls, etc. – To make life easier on you. Once these have been electrically hooked up you can focus on the fun stuff!

I am a beginner gardener myself and I started off with a small lean-to greenhouse but had no idea where to start! Luckily I had some help and now can say I have an ity bity tiny amount of experience under my belt!

If you own a Sunglo greenhouse you should either have the built in benches and shelves or purchased your own bench system. Obviously this design depends on the type of plants and amount of plants you intend to grow. But adequate space for pots and thingy majigs will make life easier.

 

Here is a list of items I suggest you purchase to start off-

  1. A large bag of soil – Go with a brand that will feed the plants for 90+ days and is suitable for indoor/outdoor gardening. (If you have good compost in your garden already, a special fine seed starter soil without the nutrients might be best.)

 

  1. Seeds! – Choose 3-5 packets to start with and make sure they are appropriate for the season. I would suggest some flowers and tomatoes. Also, read the back of the packet. Seed packets have a great deal of info on the back and the difference between needing full sun and partial shade etc. may sway your decisions.

 

  1. Plants – You want your greenhouse to feel like a garden, so choose a few pretty, green, grown plants to stick in the corners or pull them from the plants you already own. I like cacti and succulents. They are easy to care for and look great! Don’t forget to grab a few pretty pots to transfer them into. The book “The Greenhouse Expert” by Dr. D.G. Hessayon is very useful and provides detailed information on greenhouse plants. I would pick up this book immediately!

 

  1. Little things – Grab a few seed trays (You know the black trays with 50+ squares), you’ll want a small and a large water can, a few 5 gallon buckets for plant scraps, a small circulation fan (unless you have one from Sunglo already), work gloves (get 2 pairs JIC!), hand trowel (small garden shovel), and take a look through all the goodies in your local nursery or garden store. There are always fun things you can pick up!

 

It really depends on the plants you will be growing to determine what kinds of accessories you will want. Eventually you might want to upgrade your atmospheric controls or install some extra shelving. Greenhouses are so fun and customizable. Follow your heart! And remember you can always change things around. Nothing is permanent.

 

The main things to remember are light, temperature and water. As long as you give your plants adequate light, keep the desired temperature and water your plants to their specific needs you should have no problems! – OK you might run into a few along the way! I won’t lie to you! But those things are for later on. Enjoy your greenhouse! Experiment with different plants and flowers. Find your passion and relax in your own paradise! That is what a greenhouse is all about. Fulfilling your passion and creating your own oasis.

 

Need help? You can always contact us at Sunglo for any questions about your greenhouse or growing. And Visit us on Facebook to see what other customers have done to their greenhouses and what they have growing!

overwinter greenhouse

Sunglo’s Winter Photo Contest 2014 – Prizes Announced!

Enter a photo of your Sunglo greenhouse from Nov. 24th – Dec. 24th to win unique prizes only from Sunglo greenhouses!

Enter on our Facebook or send your picture(s) to info@sunglogreenhouses.com

For rules and more details click here.

 

Sunglo’s Winter Photo Contest 2014 – Prizes Announced Below-

1st Place – Grand prize

(1) Black 2×2 mini propagation tray with dome lid

&

(1) White 2×2 mini propagation tray

photo contest 2014

photo contest 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2nd Place Prize:

(2) Automatic vent openers

photo contest 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3rd Place Prize:

(1) White 2×2 mini propagation try

photo contest 2014

sunglo snowload

The Sunglo Winter Contest is About to Begin!

Sunglo’s first official contest is about to begin!


Winter photo contest 2014

Winter Photo Contest 2014

From Nov. 25th 2014 to Dec 25th 2014 submit your best winter photo of your Sunglo greenhouse to win one-of-a-kind prizes from Sunglo! Enter for your chance to win! 3 winners will be chosen!

 

 


 

The prizes will be announced on the first day of the contest via Sunglo social media sites (see links below).

 

RULES:

  1. Picture must show your Sunglo greenhouse. Any part of the greenhouse. Interior, outer or just a corner. As long as there is a Sunglo greenhouse in the picture it is a valid submission.
  2. Picture must be of gardening content. Anything that has to do with plants, flowers, gardening, nature or even your happy family standing next to the greenhouse. Beautiful, cute, inspiring or strange pictures will do as long as it’s got a garden in it!
  3. Submit your picture to info@sunglogreenhouses.com or on our Facebook page by Dec. 24th.
  4. For winners to receive notification please provide your full name, phone number and/or e-mail address and your shipping address with your submission. If entered on Facebook you will be notified by a private message requesting the information.
  5. Winners will be chosen Dec. 29th 2014 and notified immediately by e-mail, phone or Facebook message.
  6. Prizes here.
  7. Prizes will be shipped to the winner’s provided shipping address at no cost.

 

Sunglo’s social media sites:

Pinterest  Facebook  Twitter  YouTube  Houzz

Cedar benches & shelves - Sunglo greenhouse brand

NEW Greenhouse Accessories!

Sunglo would like to introduce 2 NEW greenhouse accessories…

 

NEW 30×12 Cedar Shelving-

Cedar benches & shelves - Sunglo greenhouse brand
Cedar benches – 30″ x 30″ and NEW cedar shelving – 30″ x 12″
sunglo accessories and parts
Cedar benches – 30″ x 30″ and NEW cedar shelves – 30″ x 12″

 

AND

 

NEW Univent Automatic Vent Openers-

greenhouse accessories
Univent Automatic vent opener
greenhouse accessories
Univent automatic vent opener installed

 

To see Sunglo’s full product catalog e-mail us at info@sunglogreenhouses.com with your request for a free catalog. Or give us a call at 800-647-0606 for any questions.

Please visit our Facebook page for customer projects and frequently updated pictures.

 

 

 

Greenhouse Foundations

greenhouse foundations
2100 model with 3 foot raised foundation/knee wall

 

Greenhouse foundations

Purchasing a greenhouse can be a difficult and sometimes an overwhelming process. The first things you should consider are location, foundation and of course your budget. All foundations should be level and square. A square and level foundation will eliminate challenges later when installing your greenhouse. A raised foundation or knee wall is a good option if you want to add height to your greenhouse. Knee walls are commonly 12-48 inches high and can be made of various materials. If you would like a knee wall with your Sunglo greenhouse please notify us at 800-647-0606 to add a door drop kit to your order.

Below is some info about different foundation materials and a few basic tips to get you started building your Sunglo greenhouse-

Concrete

Concrete is a great option for a foundation and often chosen among consumers because is it convenient. To attach your greenhouse to a concrete base we recommend attaching quality treated wood to the base of the greenhouse. 2 x 4’s will do. If you choose to use pressure treated wood make sure to put a barrier between the wood and aluminum, such as gasket material, as the treated wood can cause the aluminum to rust.

greenhouse foundations
Concrete foundation – Raised/knee wall

Measure twice before cutting your wood to ensure proper dimensions. We suggest allowing a 1” border around the inside and outside of the entire greenhouse. Sunglo adds 2″ to each size for the foundation measurements.

This is designed to allow a safe margin for irregularities in the wood plate. After the concrete has been poured and is level and square, a small drain should be placed in the center of the slab where water run off can drain into a gravel pit or piping that leads to a drainage area. Then your greenhouse can be bolted to the foundation.  Water and electricity should be ran to the greenhouse site before the foundation is built.

Wood

Inside a 1200G Sunglo greenhouse
1200 series Sunglo greenhouse with a raised wooden foundation and custom benches

Building a wood base is easy and inexpensive. Cedar and redwood are commonly used. Pressure treated wood is also a great option but make sure to put a barrier between the wood and aluminum, such as gasket material, as the treated wood can cause the aluminum to rust. The size of your base will depend on the size of your greenhouse again allowing a 1” border around the inside and outside of the greenhouse. After screwing the base boards together and making sure your ground is level lay down a weed barrier. This allows the water to drain through but does not allow weeds to come up.

1000E Sunglo greenhouse
1000E Sunglo greenhouse built on a wooden foundation

Pack the natural earth over the excess barrier. After your base is finished and the weed barrier is set underneath, you need to cover it. Start laying down your wood planks to make the flooring. Now it’s time to attach the greenhouse frame to the base – Make sure it is level and square by measuring from corner to corner.  For added insulation, we suggest you caulk the bottom of the aluminum framing where it meets the base with a waterproof sealant – If you are using pressure treated it is still a good idea to caulk between the base and wood. This will add extra protection to the greenhouse and keep cold air from entering and warm air from escaping in the colder months. If you are using pressure treated wood make sure the aluminum does not come into direct contact. Sunglo includes a plastic “boot” that attaches to the base rails with all our kits, so you don’t have to worry! As with all foundations please consider whether you will need water and electricity ran to the greenhouse site. Wood foundations are natural and beautiful looking!

Deck

If you are planning on purchasing a lean-to style greenhouse or even a small free-standing but only have room on your deck, that’s OK!  Before attaching the greenhouse base to pressure treated wood lay down a thick rubber, insulated mat that is the dimension of the floor of your greenhouse.

greenhouse foundations
1700 lean-to model on deck

There are various mats you can purchase that have colored designs to just plain old black. Insulating underneath and around the base is a good idea also. To attach the greenhouse base to the deck we recommend contacting your hardware store representative and explaining the situation. Decks are made of different materials and you wouldn’t want to ruin your deck in the process. Now insulation will be an issue as well. Depending on your style of deck please take this into consideration and do your research on what type of insulation, if any, you should use. Water and electricity can be easily ran to a greenhouse on a deck foundation as it is commonly a few feet from a building.

There is lots of info on the web about different foundations and step by step instructions on how to build them. I hope this gave you an idea of what you want to do with your foundation!

Sunglo offers a greenhouse foundations guide that shows how to build a easy, affordable and effective foundation base. To request a free-standing or lean-to foundation guide call us at 800-647-0606.

To view a large gallery of pictures visit our Facebook albums page.

 For more advice about greenhouse foundations or general questions leave a comment below or please e-mail us at info@sunglogreenhouses.com or call us at 1-800-647-0606.

Treatment for black fungus gnats

Black Fungus Gnat – IPM Treatment

Fungus gnats
Fungus Gnats on Cacti

GNATS

We all know what a gnat is. Most likely you have had a few gnats flying around your home, more commonly known as “fruit flies”. But fungus gnats are your gardens worst nightmare! They are small flies that infest soil and potting mix and lay their eggs in your container gardens as well. Their eggs can lay dormant in soil for weeks and then release these nasty little larvae that wreak havoc on your plants. Their larvae primarily feed on fungi and organic matter in soil, but also chew into roots and can be a problem in greenhouses, nurseries, potted plants and interior plants. Adult fungus gnats may emerge from houseplants and become a nuisance indoors too.

Fungus gnat larvae
Fungus Gnat Larvae
Fungus gnat Adult
Adult Fungus Gnat

 

 

 

 

 

 

TREATMENTS

There are a bunch of organic and chemical treatments for fungus gnats. The organic solutions include:

Hydrogen peroxide w/ no additives, Boiled grapefruit rind, Neem oil and a plethora of IPM.

We discovered we had gnats in our indoor Sunglo greenhouse after purchasing a bag of store bought miracle soil. It has been a HUGE problem. At least 100 plants have been ruined. So we researched online and came to the conclusion that we would try nematodes.

What are nematodes?

fungus gnat
Microscopic Nematode

The nematodes or roundworms constitute the phylum Nematoda. They are a diverse animal phylum inhabiting a very broad range of environments. Nematode species can be difficult to distinguish, and although over 25,000 have been described, of which more than half are parasitic, the total number of nematode species has been estimated to be about 1 million. Unlike cnidarians and flatworms, nematodes have tubular digestive systems with openings at both ends. Nematodes have successfully adapted to nearly every ecosystem from marine to fresh water, to soils, and from the polar regions to the tropics, as well as the highest to the lowest of elevations. They are ubiquitous in freshwater, marine, and terrestrial environments, where they often outnumber other animals in both individual and species counts, and are found in locations as diverse as mountains, deserts and oceanic trenches. The earth benefits from these microscopic worms. They are pretty much everywhere!

NEMATODE TREATMENT

fungus gnat
A Fungus Gnats Worst Nightmare!

There are lots of brand of nematodes to buy but we settled on this baby. Above. The nematodes come wrapped in a soft wet sponge ready to swim their way into your soil and eat the fungus gnat larvae!

fungus gnat
Remove sponge from bag..

 

fungus gnat
Dunk sponge into a watering can.. and water all your plants.

By dunking the sponge in water and swooshing it around a bit, it will release the microscopic nematodes into the water and allow them to be transferred into your infested soil. One they have broken the soil barrier the nematodes are free to wreak

havoc on the fungus gnat larvae! Too bad they are microscopic. It would be pretty neat to see :)

CONCLUSION

The nematode treatment worked, along with sticky tape but only for a week or so. It was difficult keeping our greenhouse contained. The gnats had too many places to hide in our building and were able to fly freely in and out of the greenhouse. In a different situation the nematodes, I’m sure, would have wiped out the larvae and our problem would have disappeared. We eventually cleaned out the entire greenhouse, cleaned all pots and containers, threw away all the dirt that was sitting around and moved most of the plants outside for a weekend to try to abolish the pesky gnats! And so far we’ve gotten rid of ALMOST all of them. The orchids we have in the greenhouse now are doing pretty well – See picture below. There are still a few gnats buzzing around but they have not harmed our orchid collection. We definitely learned a lesson from this… no more store bought generic soil! And to keep the greenhouse as clean as possible when planting seeds. The next time we see the first signs of gnats we’ll reach into our Google arsenal and find the next best treatment.

fungus gnat
Our display greenhouse after being cleaned out

Other pest problems? Click here for thrip information. Click here for aphid & white fly treatment. And for more information about greenhouses and greenhouse gardening visit our Facebook page!

 

Orchid care for beginners video

Orchid care

I have recently become an orchid enthusiast. We have filled up our small display greenhouse with 9 orchids so far and they are piling up! There is so much information online about orchid care it can get confusing! And each species requires different lighting, temps and care. But I found this great YouTube video series for orchid beginners. It covers everything from watering to re potting and even disease. I have been researching orchid care for months now and this video host is very knowledgeable and fun to watch! Watch a few posts and you wont be sorry! I sure am happy I found this! Press link below for series.

Basic Orchid Care for Beginners