Greenhouses forum: Automatic valves for misting systems

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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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dave
Jun 12, 2014 2:11 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Does anyone here use automatic misting systems? I'm interested in setting up an area of my greenhouse for propagation by cuttings, and I feel like an automated misting system would greatly improve my success rate.

The misting nozzles are easy to find, as is the water distribution hosing, but what about the valves? I'd like one that is simple and turns on for a minute and then stays off for perhaps 10 minutes, then back on for a minute and so on.

Any advice on this would be very appreciated!
Name: David Paul
(Zone 9b)
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DavidofDeLand
Jun 15, 2014 9:47 AM CST
I have a unit Dave that I put in up in the ceiling of my greenhouse and it had small brass heads. I was good and worked beautifully for a while.

While our well water is crystal clear and our aquifer is basically Spring water with no smell;...does not make calcium deposits or Iron buildups, there are enough minerals in our water that my heads kept clogging up every few days after a couple of months.

The ones I installed actually created a "mist".

I am thinking about retrofitting my tubes with another maybe less misty mist heads made more from drip tube type "chunky mist" heads though;........someday? Whistling

I don't really find these that misty though compared to the true mist that the small system I initially installed did do. Shrug! ....................It was great while it did though! Smiling


Thumb of 2014-06-15/DavidofDeLand/d9ab04

[Last edited by DavidofDeLand - Jun 15, 2014 9:52 AM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 15, 2014 11:18 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Did you have those on an automatic timer, or just a valve that you manually opened and closed?
Name: David Paul
(Zone 9b)
Cat Lover Hibiscus Seed Starter Native Plants and Wildflowers Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Miniature Gardening Keeper of Poultry Herbs Foliage Fan Farmer Dragonflies
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DavidofDeLand
Jun 15, 2014 11:30 AM CST
*Blush* (do I read or just spout my thoughts.................... Hilarious! )

I did not have it on automatic timer Dave. Yet I feel that wheather or not it was manual or not the results would have been the same in time. I tip my hat to you.
[Last edited by DavidofDeLand - Jun 15, 2014 11:52 AM (+)]
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Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 20, 2014 1:30 PM CST
I'm only finding pricey electrically-powered valves ($20-$35 each) that assume you have a timer and wiring to control them. That kind of timer can cost $100!
(http://www.dripworks.com/category/drip-irrigation-timers)


Based on no experience except browsing catalogs, it seems less costly to skip the valves and dedicate one cheaper timer to the whole misting bench. Use manual on-off valves if you need to enable or disable zones occasionally.

Then you can use a $40 battery timer with just cyclic "frequency" and "duration". HD might be cheaper than online, for a battery-powered timer. But this plus a $30 valve might serve a one-zone misting bench.
http://www.dripworks.com/product/TOZPT
http://www.dripworks.com/product/TGNHOSE


Or here's a $30 timer that boasts about setting ON times to the exact # of seconds. I'm not sure about the wiring, but it looks designed to plug into a wall socket and have just one AC output ... bu the ad talks a bout a built-in rechargeable battery (???)
http://www.mistking.com/Digital-Seconds-Timer.html


Have you seen these? ... Never mind, I see they cost $250!
"The Mist-a-Matic System utilizes a stainless steel screen to simulate a leaf. The screen is located
on the propagation bed where it receives the same amount of mist as the plants. The screen is
attached to a switch that activates the solenoid valve when it drys and shuts off the valve when it
has collected enough moisture."
http://horticulture.oregonstate.edu/system/files/onn130212.p...
http://growerssolution.com/PROD/mist-a-matic/Mistamatic

[Last edited by RickCorey - Jun 20, 2014 1:43 PM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 20, 2014 1:42 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

How in the tarnation have I never been able to see this before? Rick, you're a genius, thank you.

This one:
http://www.dripworks.com/product/TOZPT

Is exactly what I need. With that, all I have to do is put it right before all my misting emitters and I'm in business. I can then set it up to run once an hour for 3 minutes and that should handle it. Thanks again, Rick. Here, have an Acorn with my gratitude.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 20, 2014 1:46 PM CST
Wow, thanks! And you're welcome, too.

I was editing that post while you were being generous ... but if you don't need mist intervals down to the second, you don't need the "Mist King" gadget that seems designed to keep tropical animals comfy.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 20, 2014 1:51 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Yeah I really just need something that kicks on "every so often" and stays on for "just a little while" Smiling

That Toro timer will suit my needs perfectly. Now I can get my emitters and so forth. I'll probably post my results when I'm done, along with the shopping list. I'm going to use this to improve my propagation rate on cuttings, especially of crepe myrtles.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 20, 2014 3:08 PM CST
Misting from above, to maintain humidity over cuttings in soil, or building a "cloner" to mist up from below, onto cuttings starting roots in air?

Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 20, 2014 3:51 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Misting from above, to keep the humidity high and provide moisture to the medium.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 20, 2014 6:25 PM CST
Ahhh. I bet that also gains you some coolth.

Your intermittent mist setup would let you make an extra-simple air-mist-cloner, by running some mist nozzles or a low-flow mini-jet sprayer into a dark plastic box, aimed up at the cuttings and roots. Then you would have to make a cover to keep light out and support cuttings. I always thought that notched slats ought to suffice for thqat, but I never tried.

It would have to let excess water drain out, or you could dump it periodically.

Name: James
Fabens,TX (Zone 8a)
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Txtea
Jun 20, 2014 7:23 PM CST
Dave, I am very interested in knowing your results when you get the timer and misters set up. I have had this rolling around in my head for more than a couple of years. Have read several articles on the Mist O Matic, it is very steep in price but the few people I have had contact with that have they say nothing beets them.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Celebrating Gardening: 2015 I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped beta test the first seed swap Region: United States of America Region: Michigan
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Weedwhacker
Jun 20, 2014 8:17 PM CST
I agree Dave, please DO post a followup on how you set this up!
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 21, 2014 6:22 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I sure will. Thumbs up
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 30, 2014 8:51 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Ok, this was the easiest watering system I've ever set up. Trish was impressed when she saw it in action. Thumbs up

Here is the system where the water enters the greenhouse:

Thumb of 2014-06-30/dave/16752e

As you can see, I'm using a regular faucet installed upside down. and that immediately is hooked up to the timer that Rick referred me to. Then I have a pressure regulator which brings the PSI down to 30 (you have to lower the PSI or you'll blow out your emitters.) After that is the filter with a 200 mesh screen to keep particles getting into the emitters. From there we have good clean water going through my 1/2" tubing. This assembly is upside down because I wanted the tubing to go up and through the top frame of the greenhouse before coming back down on the other side. This keeps the tubing out of our way.

I snaked the tubing up through the top of the greenhouse and back down the other side. Then I suspended a 1/2" EMT conduit pipe and zip-tied the tubing to the pipe. This helps hold it rigid, and also lets me raise or lower it depending on my needs. Here are the emitters and they were spraying when I took the photo:

Thumb of 2014-06-30/dave/6b899d

Here's a closeup of the dials on the timer. You set the frequency on the left, and the duration on the right. As you can see, I have it set to spray for 3 minutes every hour. It's been running since yesterday and it's been like clockwork. I can't believe how happy I am with this setup.

Thumb of 2014-06-30/dave/a22756

I'll write below the parts I am using, along with their part numbers from dripworks.com (which is where I usually buy my irrigation supplies.)

FYHLSS200 Deluxe Filter - 200 Mesh $14
PRSG30 30 PSI Sen Hose Reg $5.55
CF8 1/2" Figure 8 End $0.15
ELC 1/2" coupler (connects main tubing to the filter) $0.47
121000 1/2" tubing - I have a lot of this stuff and use it all over the place. $88 for 1000'
TOZPT Toro Zero Pressure Timer $29.95

Now for the emitters, you have to buy three things:

MEBARB Press-Fit Barb (connects to the tubing) $0.10
MEAD Anti-Drip Device (stops the dripping after the water shuts off) $1.20 each... Expensive!
MTFBPR Tornado Misters (connects below anti-drip device) $0.48 each

So as you can see, I got the whole rig setup for under $100. I couldn't be happier. I'm now able to take cuttings in hotter parts of the summer, and will increase my success by letting them mist on an hourly schedule. I love it!
[Last edited by dave - Jun 30, 2014 11:46 AM (+)]
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Name: James
Fabens,TX (Zone 8a)
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Txtea
Jun 30, 2014 11:23 AM CST
Dave, thanks so much for posting the pictures. Your set up look wonderful. I know this will be my next project. Thanks James
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 30, 2014 11:44 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

You'll be glad you did!
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 30, 2014 12:43 PM CST
Looks fantastic! I love the EMT "watering wand" that gives you height control.

If I ever get around to starting seeds in trays OUTdoors, like under plastic, that's the kind of thing I was thinking of. But I was hoping to avoid needing the "anti-drip" feature by having the lines that feed the misters be the highest point in my system (maybe 1/4" tubing).
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Image
dave
Jun 30, 2014 1:54 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Well, for 5 emitters, the anti-drip only added $6 to the cost. Not really that bad.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 30, 2014 3:01 PM CST
That's true. Sometimes I try to save more money than makes sense.

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