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This is the situation: I live quite far up north (Trondheim, Norway), and wish to achieve greater diversity in yield from the garden. Although the climate is not as tough as the position would suggest (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geography_of_Norway#Climate) due to major influence of the gulf stream, many fruit trees don't thrive so very well outdoors. This made me consider building a greenhouse, for example for mediterranean fruits as oranges and grapes. In case this would be achievable, I would even consider tropical fruits as bananas and mango.

My question is this: how well would these types of mediterranean (and perhaps tropical) fruit thrive in a northern greenhouse? Would the minimal amount of sunlight be a problem, or is it mainly the temperature that these trees need?

  • The question is not whether it can be done but whether you can afford to do it. Heat and light are expensive unless you have a geothermal source and solar panels. – kevinsky May 3 '13 at 21:29
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Mainly is the humidity. You have to arrange a greenhouse very expensive, in which to regulate the temperature, of course, the light (they require much), and lower humidity. These plants are very sensitive and easily develop fungal diseases, fueled by low to medium temperature and humid climate. Also they bear seasonally low temperatures, but they are accustomed to windy areas and suffer stagnation of moisture.

But the Mediterranean plants are many, and different from each other. I think you should choose similar species, which need the same climatic conditions. Or organize a greenhouse very large, with separate spaces for plants of each area.

What you want to do is certainly possible, since in winter in Italy we eat tomatoes from the greenhouses in the Netherlands. But they are very pale and devoid of smell and taste.

But if you like to experiment, you can certainly succeed. Check that the cost of this operation is proportionate to the result. Check the greenhouses of your area, surely you are not the first who desire crops of the south.

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