Welcome to science. these posts explore the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.
You might remember a few weeks ago, I was writing about my plan to build a greenhouse out back on my fire escape before realizing that the sun wasn't in my backyard. It was rising in the front of the house instead. After more observation, I was able to track the sun in real time and have a better understanding of the sunrise and the sunset. I was right on the nose about the orientation of my house but what I didn't realize was that a cross street to the west of me is actually true north and true south. This all helps with understanding what type of light I'm going to get and as I've written before, how I can plan to utilize the sun relative to my position in hopes of getting the most out of my plants.
You can look back at my original diagram from a couple weeks ago. I actually built this on top of my old diagram so you can see some of the quide lines and where I was placing real time markers. I was right that the sun was coming in at an angle relative to my position. I knew that I needed to add an arc when I was doing my original diagram and afterwards I observed the position of the sun during the day to better understand the location of the arc and where the sun will move in the coming 30 days.
Up until the summer solstice, on June 20th, the sun will move steadily north. On the 21st it will start its retreat leading up until the winter solstice on December 20th.
Here is my plan for my greenhouse. I plan to use only 1" x 2" x 8' furring strips, one 20" x 36" piece of plexiglass for the top and clear plastic sheets for the sides. That way, squirrels and birds won't make a meal out of my seedlings. Once it starts to warm up I can bring my seedlings from the front of the house out back to the greenhouse to harden up. This is the process of acclimating them to the real world. I will let them sit outside in a protected area during the day so that once I fully transplant them, it won't be a total shock to their system. Think of the seedlings as a baby, your house is their womb that they're developing in. Once they get to a proper size, then they need to get used to the real world. You wouldn't expect a baby to start walking right off after they're born. Plants are similar. You need to train them to adjust to the conditions, to their individual environments.
Here's a progress picture of my Rossa di Miliano Onions. I'm hoping in a couple weeks I can start hardening them off in the greenhouse as the sun moves more fully into my backyard.
I ended up modifying the plan a little. I really didn't need that center support bar on the shelves, and instead of drilling into the sides of the top piece, I added some some wood to the interior vertical beams so I could drill in from the top.