A cheap and easy germination chamber

Discussion in 'The Green Patch' started by Thunder5Ranch, Mar 17, 2017.

  1. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    I built this probably 15-16 years ago to start seeds in tray. It later evolved into a display unit in my on farm store. While remodeling the store and upgrading it to a commercial kitchen the old shelving unit found its way to the corner of a barn and was forgotten the last couple of years. Until I was cleaning some junk out of the barn yesterday and found it sitting there in the corner, begging to be put back into service. It is a small unit that only holds 12 flats of seed cells but that is quite a few plant starts for a hobbyist or homestead operation. I have not dressed it up to its full former glory in the pic. I have a clear poly sheet that latches on to the front and need to staple plastic to the back of it. The lights are phillips full spectrum bulbs and are $39 for 10 in a contractor case. The ballast are $11.99 cheap shop lights from home depot. Shelf unit was made from scrap wood, poly sheet was a deformed one from a greenhouse, and my total cost for the unit came in at around $100. Enough head room to go from germination to good size plants. And my light raising and lowering system is just a hole drilled in the shelf boards and the light chain fed up through the hole with a nail or length of wire through the chain to hold it in place. Making it very easy to raise and lower the lights, without fooling around with hooks in a tight space. It beats the heck out of those junky stand up greenhouse kits and cost about $1500 less than a comparable pro germination chamber.

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  2. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Brewery Monkey Moderator

    Awesome!! [winkthumb][winkthumb]

    I like the larger starter pots, the shelves and lights are pure genius. [bow]
  3. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    I wish I had the space to use those 4" pots for starting :) I start in 72, or 128 cell trays and transplant to the 4" pots for the plants I sell at our Farmers' Markets. Had to drag all of the potted plants I could inside anywhere I could fit them as we had 3 overnight below 20 degrees and my high tunnel won't stay warm enough to protect the cold sensitive plants like the tomatoes, peppers, and egg plants and I am not going to artificially heat 48,384 cubic square feet of high tunnel LOL. And the greenhouse was packed to the gills so I took over the starting rooms, my workshop, the spare bedroom, the kitchen and the living room and trust me the wife is not happy with me right now :)

    Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best. I look at these plant starting systems ranging from Hobbyist level to Pro Grower and in all I am just not seeing where you get much bang for your buck.... Unless you want to just say "Hey I spent $27,000 on a germination chamber!........ Errr that I could have built and probably longer lasting and better for $2,000."
    Ganado and Dunerunner like this.
  4. Altoidfishfins

    Altoidfishfins Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    Simplicity...I love it!
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