Greenhouse Clean Up: Tips and Pointers - Frequently Asked Questions

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 Greenhouse Clean Up: Tips and Pointers
Failure to properly maintain and sanitize greenhouse facilities and equipment can result in the development of insect and disease problems. Sanitation should take place through out the growing season and intensive cleanup should be conducted between crops. The following steps can/may be taken to minimize problem development.

In Season Sanitation

  • Remove ALL infected plant materials
  • Remove any weeds
  • Control algal build-ups on surfaces
  • Fix problems as they arise
  • Maintain drip irrigation system
    • Check filters regularly
    • Watch lines for leaks
    • Watch drippers to ensure they are functioning properly (i.e. not plugged or excess flow)
    • Avoid build up of algae
      • Inject chlorine or biocide at end of each irrigation cycle, as regular cleanup reduces the need for intensive flushes
  • Sanitize propagation area regularly
End of Season / Between Crop Sanitation
  • Use Mother Nature to kill off pests
  • Turn off heat for a period of time in winter (e.g. 1 week)
    • Allow temperature to build up (sunlight and zero ventilation = potential pasteurization)
    • Flush irrigation system to kill accumulated organisms (chlorine/biocide flush) and to remove precipitates (acid flush)
  • Repair areas with poor drainage
  • Remove all debris and trash from entire facility; may include vacuuming
  • Remove all used growing media
  • Clean and disinfect all surfaces
  • Check and/or repair ventilation, heating/cooling and fertilizer injection systems
More detailed cleanup procedures can be found at the following links:

End of Season Cleanup
Maintenance and Cleaning Drip Irrigation Systems

Prepared by Robert Spencer, Ag-Info Centre, Alberta Agriculture & Forestry
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For more information about the content of this document, contact Robert Spencer.
This document is maintained by Brenda McLellan.
This information published to the web on November 20, 2003.
Last Reviewed/Revised on September 5, 2017.