Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Big Bad Blustery Day

Today was one of those weird days where a lot things didn't go quite right.  There was no wheelbarrow at the building for me to spread out mulch after I planted peas.  (Though I did plant four 10-foot rows of peas in the garden today.)  The outside water isn't turned on yet, so I had to get a few watering cans filled from the restroom, which took some extra work.  It was unbearably hot (it hit 90 here today).  The tops all blew off the flats that I'd taken out of the greenhouse, because even with the vent wide open, it was 97 degrees in there at noon today.  I hope the plants didn't get too dried out in the wind.

Ah, the wind.  That was the cause of the really big problem today.  I got a whole series of messages from Jeff and Keff this afternoon when I remembered to turn on my phone, informing me that the panel of windows that opens to vent the greenhouse (20 feet long) blew off today.  Apparently it was hanging on my a few pieces of metal and maintenance had to come get it down.

Luckily no one was hurt.  And it didn't cause any other serious accidents.  But definitely not a good thing.

I got over there around 6 (after getting the peas in) to check out the situation.  The panel is actually in better shape than I expected.  It's not twisted or sheared in any way, so it can probably go back up, if we can figure out a way to make it more secure.  I've looked at the panel a bit, but I'm not quite sure how we're going to reattach it and get it to stay.

In a way, having the panel broken and off is better for the plants than having it screwed completely shut.  We can heat the greenhouse enough, even with the panel off.  But with the panel on, it was impossible to cool the greenhouse enough to keep from cooking the plants, on even a slightly warm day.

Ultimately, we're going to have to figure out a solution that will work to keep a roof on the greenhouse.  Fairly soon, I suppose.  I'm not sure with what money this will happen.  My sense is that there's no budget at the apartment complex for major repairs to the greenhouse.   (So if you're a big donor out there, looking for a project to fund...)

The funny thing is that this morning I ordered 500 4" pots and 50 6" pots, and 35 trays, to prepare for repotting next week.  So I guess we'd better find a way to keep making this work.  (I love the internet.  I got 4" pots for less than a penny each at


(I don't have any photos of the roof or panel, but here are how the seedlings looked this morning:

The pole beans are crazy big already.  We need to get them in pots very soon.  (Note to self:  we need potting soil.)

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