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Proceedings of the International Plant Propagator's Society

Vol. 30


Adrian J. Knuttel

pp: 310-311

In a paper presented at the 1978 IPPS meeting I described our pithouse propagation facility (1). The building is H-shaped and constructed below ground which I feel helps to moderate the temperature. Additional energy savings are obtained by using 3 layers of plastic on the roof.

Today I would like to discuss the economics of heating our pithouse. There is a choice of 5 energy sources: wood, coal, oil, gas, or electricity. Natural gas, if available, would be more economical than oil at this time; however, we don't know what the price will be in the future. Wood needs a lot of attention, especially during the night, so I do not find that practical for my propagation house.

Coal is for me the most practical heat for a propagation house. I use an upright burner, brick line of cast iron, which holds 100 lbs of coal. I use coal in combination with electric cables in the beds. I bought coal in bulk at $72.00 a ton. The price expressed in energy units is 1/3 the price of oil. I would suggest heating

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