Passive Solar Systems Crop Selection, Planning, Scheduling and Planting

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1 Passive Solar Systems Crop Selection, Planning, Scheduling and Planting John Biernbaum and Adam Montri Michigan State University

2 How do vegetable crops stay alive and grow during the winter in a Passive Solar Greenhouse?

3 Inside, protected from excess wind, moisture and cold, under a protective blanket

4 Inside, protected from excess wind, moisture and cold, under a protective blanket are fresh, good tasting salad and cooking greens.

5 4 Keys to Winter Harvest Crop Selection The Right Crops Cold tolerant crops Temperatures to 15F Scheduling Planted at the Right Time Late Summer-Early Fall Planting Greenhouse becomes a refrigerator Multiple Harvests Variety of Leafy Greens Cut and come again- key under lower light Young plants more tolerant of the cold Crop Protection - Structure and Covering Igloo or cloud effect

6 What are the right crops?

7 Warm Season asparagus artichoke horseradish snap bean edamame 12. Perennials lima bean 11. Beans peas And Peas winter pumpkin summer cucumber melon watermelon tomato pepper eggplant tomitillo 10. Squash 9. Cucumbers and melons 8. Summer Fruits okra sweet corn popcorn Seeds and Fruits 7. Corn sweet potato rhubarb sunchoke 50 Vegetables: What to grow? (diversity/selection) How much to grow? (space/plant & total) When to grow it? (time and season) Where to grow it? (grouping & rotation) How to grow it? 5. Root Crops carrot 6. Potatoes beet turnip parsnip radish rutabaga Peruvian potato 1. Salad Greens 3. Cole Crops Cool Season lettuce baby leaf salad mix spinach chard beet mustard tatsoi pac choi 2. Cooking kale Greens collard 4. Onions and Flavor John Biernbaum, MSU, 2009 cabbage broccoli cauliflower kohlrabi Brussels sprouts scallions onions garlic leek celery celeriac bulb fennel Leaves, Flowers and Roots

8 Baby Leaf Salad Greens lettuce, mizuna, Chinese cabbage, arugula, bulls blood beet

9 Leafy/Cooking Greens spinach, beets, mustard, chard, kale, collards

10 Heading Greens lettuce, pac choi, Chinese cabbage, tatsoi

11 Root Crops radish, carrot, turnip, beet, potato

12 A Schedule is provided for planting times. Pictures taken in the MSU-SOF Passive Solar Greenhouses on October 28 th, The houses are full and getting ready for winter.

13 Head Lettuce

14 Komatsuna

15 Chinese Cabbage

16 Tatsoi Mei quing choi

17 spinach

18 Baby leaf salad greens

19 Kale

20 chard collards

21 Radishes

22 Joi Choi transplanted Sept 15

23 Chinese cabbage carrots

24 Hakurei Salad Turnips

25 Beet greens seeded Sept 18

26 Green onions Chard

27 MSU Student Organic Farm, May 17, 2007

28

29

30 4 Keys to Winter Harvest Crop Selection The Right Crops Cold tolerant crops Temperatures to 15F Scheduling Planted at the Right Time Late Summer-Early Fall Planting Greenhouse becomes a refrigerator Multiple Harvests Variety of Leafy Greens Cut and come again- key under lower light Young plants more tolerant of the cold Crop Protection - Structure and Covering Igloo or cloud effect

31 What is the correct schedule? Baby leaf salad greens Crop "Type" Comparison 160 Plant Earlier Can Plant Later 75 Days to 1st Harvest Weekly Soil Temperature Lettuce Arugula Soil temp Aug 24-Aug 31-Aug 7-Sep 14-Sep 21-Sep 28-Sep 5-Oct 12-Oct 19-Oct 26-Oct Date of Planting

32 Schedules influenced by light and temperature.

33 From 15+ to 10 hour days.

34 Daily Light Integral inside the Green house Assuming 65% Transmission Daily light integral (mol m -2 d -1 ) From 30 to less than 3 light units per day. Phoenix E.Lansing Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Level needed for good growth.

35 Temperature

36 Fall Planting (Right Time) Early August: carrots (DS) parsley (T) Mid August: scallions (DS/T) kale (T) chard (T) Early September: beets (DS) head lettuce (T) Chinese cabbage (T) pac choi (T) Throughout September: BLSG (DS) komatsuna (DS) cilantro (T) Spinach (DS) Turnips (DS) Late September and early October: radishes (DS) faster BLSG (kale, mizuna, mustard, arugula) (DS)

37

38 Beds % Space Beds % Space Fall Early-long residency Cool Season Spring Early - Cool Season Scallions 8 3.0% BLSM % Carrots 8 3.0% Lettuce % Kale % chard % Chard % kale % Collards 8 3.0% collard 6 2.3% Parsley 8 3.0% spinach % 70 Carrot % Fall Late-Long Residency -Cool radish 6 2.3% BLSM % beet 6 2.3% Fall Late-Short Residency - Cool turnip 6 2.3% Lettuce % scallions 8 3.0% Spinach % 134 Radish % Spring Late-Summer Residency - Warm Turnip 8 3.0% Tomato % Cilantro 8 3.0% Pepper % Choi 8 3.0% Eggplant % Tatsoi 8 3.0% Cukes % Komatsuna 8 3.0% SumSquash % Napa Cabbage 8 3.0% Beans % Total Beds % Total Beds % For 3-20 X 96ft and 1-30 X 96ft high tunnels, Beds are 2.5 ft X 8 ft

39 4 Keys to Winter Harvest Crop Selection The Right Crops Cold tolerant crops Temperatures to 15F Scheduling Planted at the Right Time Late Summer-Early Fall Planting Greenhouse becomes a refrigerator Multiple Harvests Variety of Leafy Greens Cut and come again- key under lower light Young plants more tolerant of the cold Crop Protection - Structure and Covering Igloo or cloud effect

40 Multiple Harvest for Salad Greens

41 Multiple Harvest for Leafy Greens

42 4 Keys to Winter Harvest Right Crops - Cold Tolerant Temperatures to 15F Right Time - Early Fall Planting/Young Plants Greenhouse becomes a refrigerator Right Harvest Multiple Cut and come again- key under lower light Young plants more tolerant of the cold Right Protection - Structure and Covering Igloo or cloud effect

43 Conduction through covering Conduction through perimeter to cold soil Greenhouse Heat Loss Convection or leaking of warm air Radiation to the cold sky When is it warmer? A clear night or a cloudy night? The greenhouse cover and internal cover, together with the moisture on them, act like clouds and trap the soil radiant energy.

44 Frost Fabric Remay inner crop cover One key to maintaining temperature

45 Plastic for Internal Cover

46 Frost Fabric for Internal Cover

47 Open cover on sunny days to capture solar energy by warming the soil

48 Temperature Under Frost Fabric Temperature /4/2004 0:00 1/6/2004 0:00 1/8/2004 0:00 Days and Time 1/10/ :00 Inside Outside 1/12/ :00

49 Crop is frozen early morning but thaws out for harvest by late morning.

50 4 Keys to Winter Harvest Crop Selection The Right Crops Cold tolerant crops Temperatures to 15F Scheduling Planted at the Right Time Late Summer-Early Fall Planting Greenhouse becomes a refrigerator Multiple Harvests Variety of Leafy Greens Cut and come again- key under lower light Young plants more tolerant of the cold Crop Protection - Structure and Covering Igloo or cloud effect

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