It’s been several months since I showed what’s happening in the greenhouse, so I thought I would give a quick tour in there today. It’s a busy place right now, as I begin moving seedlings out there to grow on before I plant them outside. And I’m also growing things in the beds and on the benches as I try and maximize the space in the 8×12 foot greenhouse. To start, I had a bad outbreak of aphids in the greenhouse this winter, no doubt helped by milder than usual winter weather. Before I moved seedlings out there I did a pretty thorough cleanup, harvesting a few things and pulling older leaves that had a lot of aphid coverage. Then I sprayed everything down with PyGanic, an organic pyrethrin-based insecticide.
Since pyrethrins are non-selective insecticides I use them sparingly, since they will kill beneficial insects and pollinators. But at this time of year the only insects in the greenhouse were the aphids and a few slugs and snails, so I sprayed down all the plants in the beds and on the benches. Then I sprayed the benches and shelves as well. I am happy to say that it reduced the aphid numbers down considerably, though I will have to watch because they multiply so fast and they love the tender young seedlings. And it appears that the PyGanic has not harmed those young seedlings like insecticidal soap often does, while it definitely knocks the aphids down on them.
And speaking of seedlings, the shelves are filling up with flats of them. That’s Konan kohlrabi in the above photo, a 2016 AAS Winner that did quite well for me last year. I’m keeping the warm weather veggies like peppers and tomatoes inside under lights, but the cool season crops and herbs are all out in the greenhouse now. You can see some of them on the shelves in the below photo, including individual pots of catnip, fennel and parsley. Most of the seedlings in the greenhouse are now in 3.5″ pots.
There’s still quite a few of the overwintered veggies growing in the beds at this point. In the below photo you can see onions and lettuce. Both are ready for harvesting as needed.
The onion is the multiplier onion called I’itoi. It’s my first time growing it, and I have planted it in several places. In addition to that in the greenhouse bed, it’s in a bed just outside the greenhouse. I also have a few planted in a container in the greenhouse. It’s growing nicely in all locations, and I’ve been pulling the young onions for use as scallions as needed. You can pull a single onion and leave the rest of the clump to grow, which makes it very convenient since typically I only need a single scallion at a time.
And the overwintered kale still has a lot of edible leaves as well, though it is starting to flower. It’s a mix of several varieties, including True Siberian and Meadowlark. I believe it is the Meadowlark that is showing flower buds.
The bed on the other side has greens like Mizspoona and Vivid Choi planted, as well as overwintered parsley. The Vivid Choi is starting to flower there, and I will leave the plants until I have replacements ready. We will enjoy the flowers as well as the leaves for as long as they last.
Over on the bench I have three salad boxes planted with lettuce and arugula. It will be a few weeks before there’s anything edible there, but it shouldn’t take long for the arugula. I’ve got more lettuce ready to go in a cold frame bed once I can get one worked up and ready to plant. The weather tomorrow looks promising, so that will be on my to-do list for sure.
Also I have several pots of chives on the bench, along with planter boxes with cilantro and the I’itoi onions. I’ve got more chives planted outside, but it is handy to have these in winter when the ones outside are dormant.
I hope you have enjoyed this tour of the greenhouse here in March. I’ll be back soon with more happenings from Happy Acres!
Things are very much ahead of the plantings in our greenhouse. We are just really getting going.
Your greenhouse is certainly hopping – I have a feeling that you have done a lot to refine what and how you grow in it over the years. And now you are rewarded with not only a place to hold seedlings but plenty of harvestable goodies as well.
Aphids are the biggest pest in my garden. Pyganic is helpful when they get out of control and I don’t want to sacrifice the plants they are infesting. Another treatment that I use for recurring aphid infestations is Azadirachtin, a neem derivative, it doesn’t kill outright but stops pests from feeding and blocks the hormones that cause them to metamorphose so they don’t mature and reproduce. It takes longer to to have an effect but they don’t come back as quickly. Sometime I mix it with the Pyganic to give the aphids a 1-2 punch. It also doesn’t harm beneficial insects since it’s only toxic if ingested and the beneficials don’t generally do so.
I’m behind on my spring seed starting. Last night I rounded up a bunch of seeds to get going so I’ll be having a sow-fest for the next couple of days. And then I get to start sowing tomatoes and peppers. I’m so happy it’s spring!
I use azadirachtin/Azamax in the main garden along with pyrethrins (and Bt), but I was reluctant to use it on the young seedlings since neem oil itself seems to be hard on them. I may test the Azamax/pyganic combo on some seedlings and see how they take it.
Wonderful, I always appreciate the tour of your greenhouse. Nice to see the multiplier onions as I’ve just bought some (type unknown) at a seed sale recently. At least I know what they should look like now!
That kale is amazing!
Is multiplier onions the same as walking onions?
Norma, the walking onions are different. The multiplier onions produce more than one bulb per plant, like a shallot does. They’re also known as potato onions.