Orchids forum: sunroom (Florida room)

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Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Jan 16, 2015 11:19 AM CST
Have any of you used the Florian products or dealt with this company when building or renovating a space for a sunroom/greenhouse?
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Charter ATP Member Spiders! Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Pennsylvania Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Ponds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: New Jersey
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Ursula
Jan 16, 2015 4:54 PM CST

Moderator

Yes Ken!
My greenhouse was built by Florian, I have the Geneva room! And I am very happy with it.
Thumb of 2015-01-16/Ursula/78264d

Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jan 16, 2015 4:55 PM CST
T-Mail, Ursula.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 30, 2015 2:09 PM CST
The glass arrived at noon, but the truck was so long and my driveway so steep, the truck could not back up into the drive. All the crates were off-loaded onto the street outside the house. Some of my contractor's crew just arrived with a fork lift and now everything is tucked in at the top of the driveway, out of harm's way. This is what the porch looked like a few months ago and what it looks like now. All that's really left to move out is my storage/packaging bench and it will be moved out tomorrow when they are supposed to begin deconstructing the porch.

All that will be left of the porch are three brick walls. The double windows adjacent to the bench will be replaced with French doors so that there will be French doors on both ends of the sunroom. The tile will be covered with concrete to bring that flooring up to the level of the house flooring and that concrete overlay will be extended out 8' onto the concrete patio. We will then extend that remaining concrete patio out 8' to give us back the same size patio. The vinyl ceiling will be replaced with beaded board, the two columns will be removed, two of the three ceiling fans will be moved about 3' and we'll have a chandelier replace that third fan but will be moved 3' towards the new Florian glass structure. This space will have a new AC/heat unit so the sunroom will be climate-controlled. I will move my existing storage/packaging bench back in and it'll go against the same brick wall. I'll have a new 6-8' potting bench with sealing concrete counter, an oversized sink, and instant heated water in that cabinet (my plants and hands don't want cold winter water!). The sink will drain out into an underground gravel area. There will be a 32' long floor trench that will drain any water out onto the lawn. Our 10'x32' screened in porch will become an 18'x32' sunroom.

You'll need to click on the pictures to see the full view.

Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/014caf Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/2edd7b Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/a16308 six months ago


Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/74d253 six months ago


Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/bbd01b Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/2840b5 today


Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/edad94 Thumb of 2015-07-30/drdawg/f096e1 Florian glass stucture

drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Jul 30, 2015 3:08 PM CST
Hurray! There's hope after all that it will be done before winter.!
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Hibiscus Birds Bromeliad Greenhouse Master Gardener: Florida
Garden Photography Region: United States of America Roses Tropicals Region: Florida Orchids
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hawkarica
Jul 30, 2015 3:16 PM CST
Good luck with that. Mine was 6 months late and $4,000 over budget but I love it now.

Jim
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Charter ATP Member Spiders! Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Pennsylvania Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Ponds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: New Jersey
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Ursula
Jul 30, 2015 3:37 PM CST

Moderator

Not to fret, Ken. My greenhouse was up in a couple of days. What took a bit longer was the Electrician and heating system guys, but even they got their stuff straightened out eventually.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 30, 2015 3:49 PM CST
At least I see something happening now. This has already been a four month project without a single move on something material. I am an optimist so I am forever hopeful. Not always patient though. Sighing! We'll see if workers show up tomorrow as promised. Whistling
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Melissa
Memphis, TN (Zone 8a)
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Garden Photography Cat Lover Hummingbirder Permaculture Region: Tennessee
Dog Lover Bee Lover Greenhouse Orchids Hostas
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shadytrake
Jul 30, 2015 7:14 PM CST
Wowee....lots of fun going on there!
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 30, 2015 8:13 PM CST
I wouldn't quite call it "fun":, Melissa. Finding a place to park all the stuff that was on the porch and out on the patio has been a chore. I had to take half my garden equipment out of the equipment shed, put them under a tarp in a corner of the driveway, and hope that someone doesn't steal it all while this project is being done. Now my equipment shed looks like a furniture storage unit. The large storage/packaging unit is going in the garage. Parking two vehicles there now becomes a challenge. I still haven't figured out where to put the BBQ grill. We grill 2-3 times every week, week in and week out, and I want to have access to the grill. No, not fun at all.

I guess my lament is........Sacrifice short-term for long-term pleasure. Sighing!
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Kathy
Western MA

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Dog Lover Region: Northeast US Orchids Irises
Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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boojum
Jul 31, 2015 6:31 PM CST
I'm feeling discouraged again with my 'potential' project. My carpenter is balking. Back to square one. Be happy Ken! I NEED you to be happy!
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 31, 2015 7:05 PM CST
I am fine. I am an optimist. I guess that makes me a happy-person by nature.

Kathy, I don't know your situation, but I just wonder why your carpenter doesn't agree to do what YOU WANT TO DO. I don't think I have ever hired a contractor/electrician/carpenter that did not do what I wanted done. Who's paying the frigging bills? I don't mind recommendations and input, but my gosh, who's the boss here? I have built three homes and two dental offices, and of those five structures, I actually developed the plans and even built scale models to prove what I wanted done could be done. The largest house I built on the Gulf Coast was a gorgeous structure and (luckily) my architect was a dear friend. He said that the roof line I planed to do could not possibly be done. I built the model to scale, presented him with the model, and the roof was built as I designed. I am not a builder and certainly have no formal education in building structures. I just know what I want and figure out a way to make it happen. Stand by your guns, Kathy. I think the Florian input is important. They have been a part of thousands of these structures being built. How many has that carpenter designed and built?

I rest my case. Sorry if I have stepped on anyone's toes.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Kathy
Western MA

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Dog Lover Region: Northeast US Orchids Irises
Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Image
boojum
Aug 1, 2015 8:41 AM CST
Oh dear, he's a great handyman but doesn't have the licenses necessary for a bank loan, permits. Not his fault at all. Didn't mean to get your anger up, Ken! You are my protector, for sure! I'll start in on this on Monday. I wrote Steve F a note asking when to talk and get a bid. I may get the structure ready and hire Florian to install.
What is your heat source? Is it AC/electric heat? I will try to hook in to my house furnace.
@Ursula, do you have any suggestions for northeast peripherals? I'm thinking exhaust fan, pipes to hang plants, vents low and a door. Steve said no one ends up using the windows. True?
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Aug 1, 2015 9:00 AM CST
No anger here, Kathy. Life's too short for that. Sticking tongue out

I hope Steve is dead wrong about the windows. We have two large windows plus the double-door on that 32' span. We love to open up the house to the outside on nice days, and I certainly plan to do that whenever possible. That may only be a couple of months in the fall/winter and again, a couple of months in the spring/early summer, but I still wanted the ability to bring the outside in (but not the insects).

My contractor said NOT to extend either one of our central air units (AC/heat) into this large space but to install a stand-alone, HVAC, 1-ton mini split system. I checked this system out and it has been used extensively in Europe of many years, since the vast majority of those houses were never built for central air units. I liked what I found in my research and am sure it will do a good job heating and cooling that 5500 cf. space.

Do let Steve help you with some of the decision-making. He's got the experience and can surely help you. There is nothing wrong in having more than one option on the table.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Aug 1, 2015 10:01 AM CST
The screened-in porch/gutter has been deconstructed. The ceiling will be removed so that electrical wiring can be done, the columns removed, and then work preparing for the concrete overlay and extension can be started. I hope next week is a "busy" week here for my contractor and crew.

Thumb of 2015-08-01/drdawg/64ee32 yesterday
Thumb of 2015-08-01/drdawg/544bd6 today
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Charter ATP Member Spiders! Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Pennsylvania Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Ponds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: New Jersey
Image
Ursula
Aug 1, 2015 10:12 AM CST

Moderator

I have never used my windows, I have four. I always use the door to the deck with its large screen door. It will also be so much easier to clean large panels down the road, rather than getting the green crud out of the crevices on the windows. Speaking from experience!
We have a good size fan built into the South facing glass wall, that is a necessity.
We have oil heat, which is part of the house, the warm air circulates through the whole house. Great on sunny Winter days, as the greenhouse warms up the whole house during the day. We also have AC, which is also part of the house. I would recommend having separate AC though. Especially if you keep it filled up with lots of plants during the Summer. So far, I have always emptied out my greenhouse for the Summer and scrub it out, and then take essentially the greenhouse off-line.
Also, if you have heating registers on the floor as I do, I would keep them raised, so when you water, you don't flood your heating ducts with water. Works well for me.
We have a sturdy steel bar along in the center of the greenhouse, to hang Vandas and large Cattleyas, I like it a lot.
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Aug 1, 2015 10:15 AM CST
This sounds like lots of fun to follow, and Ken, way to go on building a piece of Florida onto your Mississippi home! That's going to be easier and cheaper in the long run than moving down here, I'll bet. (be sure the mini-split they put in has heat as well as a/c capability, btw)

Kathy, I'd also recommend a mini-split system for heat and a/c in your new greenhouse. They're super efficient, can use just the fan when needed for air movement, quiet and best of all they're inexpensive and very simple to install, as well. We had one put into our bedroom so that we could keep it cooler at night than the rest of the house (for certain women of a certain age who get too hot at night . . . ) Rolling my eyes. Rather than kicking on and off, and throwing a hurricane of frigid air like a regular a/c unit does, the mini-split runs at a constant low speed and keeps the temperature from bouncing up and down. Good for growing orchids and other tender plants.

When you think about the cost of extending vents etc. into the new greenhouse from the house system, I'll bet it would be comparable to putting in a mini-split, and the mini-split would be SO much better. You'd be able to control the temp in the greenhouse separately from the house.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Charter ATP Member Spiders! Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Pennsylvania Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Ponds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: New Jersey
Image
Ursula
Aug 1, 2015 10:15 AM CST

Moderator

Looks promising, Ken!
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Aug 1, 2015 10:24 AM CST
Keep in mind, Kathy, that you and Ursula have a completely different sort of room, at least for the most part. I don't dare mention the word "Greenhouse" to my wife. Whistling She would have a hissy-fit if she even thought that was the primary purpose of this 18'x32' room. She wants to live in that room year' round and she's already asking: "where will the TV be mounted?" She knows and accepts that one side (the right-hand side) will have two large benches for plant-work and she knows there will be tropical plants in the space, but the majority of the space is hers, to do with as she wants. Heck, we are even replacing the middle ceiling fan with a chandelier and she has plans for a smallish, wood dining table under that light! Sighing! I am sure that there are other "surprises" that await me.

The only thing on the tiled floor will be that 32' long Hubbell trench drain with decorative grate. We sit on a concrete slab, so there are no floor-registers.

Too late about the windows. They are sitting on my driveway.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Aug 1, 2015 10:24 AM CST
It is at least a start, Ursula.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.

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