Saturday, February 21, 2015

And of learning experiences (aka Dismal failures)

Okay, you guys can't be lead to believe everything I try on here is a success.  More often than not, they are, and I will update you on their success here.  But sometimes, there are my learning experiences otherwise know as my dismal failures.  Dismal is a strong word.  I mean I do learn something from these failures.  If you learn something then it isn't a total loss right?  I'm noticing many of my "learning experiences"  revolve around my desire to have a green house...cheaply.  Here is my first attempt

It looks great doesn't it?  Problem is it can't withstand a good gust of wind.  Found this out the hard way when it dumped everything out.  This design worked overall and once I anchored it to the deck, it worked much better.  Problem is without a heat source, it would lose heat quickly because of its location on the floor of the deck.  So it's useless overnight.  I like the concept if I can figure a way for it to hold heat better over night without the use of electricity.

So this year I decided to take the old PVC pipe left over from the old chicken run and remake it into a hoop house of sorts.  I thought if over ground, it would hold the heat from the day better.  Ideally, a hoop shape would have been better, but that would have meant buying whole PVC length.  That meant additional funds used and we really didn't have it.  So I used the left over and made the design more like a "A" frame shape.  The first time I did this, I used a rope I thought was much stronger than it was.  We had a day of large wind gusts and the hoop house ended up off the raised bed and flat onto the ground due to the rope snapping.  I went back out, got it back together and anchored it really well.  This went fine except we had another day of large wind gusts and , while it stayed where it was supposed to be, it pulled the clear vinyl away from the PVC frame in some areas.  I don't have time to redo this right now, and it would be pointless to do it right now anyway because we are getting to the point in our season where I would be planting cold weather stuff anyway.  Duh!  I am going to continue to re design this over the season and would like to have something to extend the gardening season on the other side (fall).  I believe the PVC idea is a dud.  What I want now is to make something out of wood with the clear vinyl sandwiched between the wood frame for security.  It is still a process.  I invested funds into the vinyl and so am not giving up on this.  

Speaking of the garden,  Strawberries are on the docket for planting this year.  I have the entire back raised area of the garden planted with blackberry bushes and a couple of blueberry bushes.  Strawberry plants will make good ground cover I think.  They would be planted in front of the bushes so sunlight shouldn't be an issue.  I love the idea of having that area designated a perennial fruit area.  Never have to worry about that area again. Well except for maintenance.   Here's hoping.  

My point to my greenhouse issue is this; no failure is a true failure if you learn something.  There will be a time when I have a greenhouse/cold frame for my gardening.  I can promise this one way or the other.  As long as I keep trying, I am ahead of the game.  This is a good rule of thumb to have for life in general.  Learn from your mistakes, and never give up.

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