Looking for heated propagator with variable temperature control

danesnpits(2a)October 28, 2013

Hi there! I have decided to try seeds! I would love to get my hands on a heated propagator with variable temp control I am having a heck of a time finding anyone that has these! Do you know where I can find? I would be willing to get one shipped from the states to my dad's montana adress then he would drive it across the border to me. Please! Anyone! I am so frustrated over this. I have never had such a hard time finding products for gardening in my life!

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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Not to sound blunt, but are you sure you need a germination mat and/or a thermostat? What seeds are you planning on trying?

SCG

    Bookmark   October 29, 2013 at 5:39PM
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danesnpits(2a)

germinator/propagator, aren't they the same thing? I want the heat mat that had variable temp capability or thermostat, dome with humidity control, seed tray.,

    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 2:34AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Okay, I was just trying to save you money. Unless you are trying to germinate seeds that have a very specific, often high, temperature you don't need to waste money on all that stuff. For most vegetable and flower seeds room temperature falls within the optimal range for germination. Most germinate a little faster slightly warmer so placing them on a warm surface, like the top of your fridge, is all that is required.

Instead of the germination dome you can use a piece of saran wrap over the container.

I bought all that stuff and now never use it unless I am doing a very large batch (500+ seeds of one type) or very expensive seeds. Then I will set the temp at that species optimal temp.

Good luck.

SCG

    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 12:49PM
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danesnpits(2a)

Thanks for the reply! I am actually going to give a go at
Bonsai Desert Rose - Red White Flower, Adenium Obesum,
Blue Mini Angel Trumpet Flower Seeds, Iochroma Australis,
Black Bat Flower Plant Seeds, Tacca Chantrieri,
Vigna Caracalla Flower Plant Seeds, Corkscrew Snail Vine,
Blue Passion Flower Vine Seeds, Passiflora Caerulea and Rare Tropical Hibiscus Seeds, Rosa-sinensis. I am thinking that I need heat for these, and a steady heat?

    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 1:36PM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Yes, appears you did your homework. :) Many of those species require high and steady heat to germinate. One thing to consider is that there is a vast array of optimal temp's there, some seeds will fry at 30C. You may have to either have a couple mats or stagger germination.

If your somewhat handy you can buy thermostats at your local plumbing and heating wholesaler. You can get them so you can direct wire from 120v without a relay. Then you can use it for a multitude of applications, including keeping ambient temperature up in a mini greenhouse for sensitive plants. I use the Emerson 16E09-101 for a few reasons. First, it goes to -40C. Second, it has a long probe sensor allowing me to stick it in soil or read ambient air temp. Lastly, you can control the cut in and out temperature to as small as one degree giving you very consistent temp. It is a little more money but I use it for many applications. It is simple to wire and I would be happy to help you if needed.

Use "germination mat thermostat" in google for better results if you want to buy a commercial one.

SCG

    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 3:46PM
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danesnpits(2a)

You have been super helpful SouthCountryGuy!!!! What do you think of these products? One link is for the hydrofarms hot house, then the grow light and thermostat. I hope this will work, as its fairly cheap. I can get it in the states, as my dad can drive across the border from Alberta in Montana to get it and bring it back.

http://www.hydrofarm.com/product.php?itemid=7706

http://www.hydrofarm.com/product.php?itemid=3372

http://www.hydrofarm.com/product.php?itemid=2516

    Bookmark   October 31, 2013 at 3:34AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Well i don't think I would buy the hot house in a package like that. For one the peat pellets are, IMHO, not very good. I personally don't use small seed starting trays for plants I plan to grow in pots for any length of time. Every time you transplant a plant it will suffer set back to some degree. So if you can start them in larger, say 4" pots, they will usually grow bigger faster. I'd suggest buying 1020 trays and inserts or pots to fit them. You can buy them all separate for a reasonable price, including the domes.

http://www.greenhousemegastore.com/category/flats-trays-inserts

http://www.greenhousemegastore.com/category/seed-starting

Links showing you basically the same things for a better price.

Unless you only plan to use the light for starting seeds you are going to out grow it very, very fast. A standard tray is 11"x22" so you will only be able to get one under it. I also think that you will want more light when the plants get bigger. I would go with minimum 4 lamp 4' fixture for 2 trays.

Have a good one.

SCG

    Bookmark   October 31, 2013 at 3:29PM
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danesnpits(2a)

Thank you so much for this info! I heard too those pellets are bad! I was at Early's Farm and Garden yesterday in Saskatoon and they had those 1020 trays. They said they could custom build me a tray dome with their products, and get me the proper heat mat with theromstat. They said I didn't have to go with all one brand like that kit I showed you. I will definately go with the 4 foot for 2 trays for sure! You have given me such great insight. I am so glad you responded.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2013 at 7:40AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Glad you found what you needed. It is a lot of fun starting plants from seeds.

I will warn you that you should buy more lights than you think you need as you always run out. Also, if you plan to grow plants under the lights for a long period of time (months) figure out what size pots your going to need, probably minimum 4 or 6", if not bigger. We all seem to start as many seedlings as we can only to find out we don't have enough room or lights. For example if you plan on using 4" pots and have one 4 bulb 4' fixture you will be able to fit about 36 pots under your lights. We ALL started too many seeds the first time.

Look forward to seeing some pictures of your plants.

SCG

    Bookmark   November 1, 2013 at 12:16PM
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