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Biosystems Research Complex

Greenhouse Supplies & Services

A supply of standard growing media and containers is provided as part of the Greenhouse fee. This includes various potting media, perlite, vermiculite, washed sand, lime, fertilizers, labels, and plant supports. A stock supply of standard pots and flats is also maintained. Pesticides and Fungicides are available only to certified pesticide applicators.

The above supplies are available only for plants grown at the Clemson University Greenhouse Complex. For supplies used outside the facility, the greenhouse management can assist you with the purchase of the materials. Supplies and materials not maintained as part of the common stock of the Greenhouse Complex will be the responsibility of the individual PI.

Greenhouse staff will program, monitor, maintain and adjust all environmental controls. Environmental data is recorded and will be retrieved when requested. Staff will assist in pest monitoring and making pesticide recommendations. Pesticide applications will be made only after receipt of a written request and instructions as part of the Greenhouse Reservation Form. If no instructions are provided, pest management will be at the discretion of the Greenhouse Staff Individual greenhouse users are responsible for maintaining their plants to include spacing, watering and fertilization. Periodic maintenance is the responsibility of the Greenhouse staff; however individual users are responsible for general sanitation and cleanliness of their sections.

Supplemental Equipment

Installation of any supplemental equipment must be approved by the BRC Director prior to installation. This does not apply to portable devices but does include any equipment that requires fixed mounting or utility services.

  • Placement of large equipment that will remain in the facility for an extended period of time must be approved by the Greenhouse Advisory Committee.
  • No alterations may be made to the greenhouse structure or headhouse areas without prior approval. This includes removal of benches, making attachments to the greenhouse structure or disabling or modification of any of the greenhouse control systems.
  • Equipment and materials should not be stored in the greenhouse sections.


There is a mandatory safety training session that all personnel working in the greenhouse must complete. The Greenhouse Complex is considered a laboratory environment. Safety guidelines applicable in labs should be followed. That includes the wearing of closed toed shoes and use of eye protection where applicable. Smoking is prohibited in all areas of the Greenhouse Complex.

Plant Care

Once greenhouse space is assigned, the Users (researcher, graduate student or department technician) are responsible for all plant maintenance. This includes watering, potting/re-potting, pruning, fertilizing, and insect /disease control (monitoring).

It is important that a member of the research group be a licensed pesticide applicator if pesticides are to be User applied. It is the responsibility of the research group to maintain appropriate greenhouse sanitation and keep its area of the greenhouse clean.

Pest Control

Pesticides are normally applied by the individual user group unless otherwise requested and approved. Pesticide application preferences should be indicated on the Application for Greenhouse Services Form. Pest control will be at the discretion of the greenhouse staff for projects if no guidelines are provided.

Pesticide applications by Users are to be discussed in advance with the Greenhouse Staff. Anyone applying pesticides in the greenhouses must have the appropriate Operator or Applicator licenses from the South Carolina Department of Pesticide Regulation. All applicable pesticide label instructions and EPA Worker Protection Standard (WPS) guidelines must also be followed.

This includes applying the pesticide(s) correctly, using appropriate rates, and wearing appropriate personal protective equipment, posting approved warning signs, and recording and posting pesticide application information in the Greenhouse Pesticide Records.

EPA Worker Protection Standard Warning Signs and Pesticide Application Record

Sheets are available from the Greenhouse staff.

Plant Material & Media Disposal

Greenhouse waste should be discarded outside the building. Plants, waste soil and media should be placed in the waste media bunker outside the headhouse. Please do not discard any non-biodegradable materials (pots, flats, labels, sticky tags) in the waste bunker. Those materials should be placed in the dumpster. Garbage cans should not be used for plant and soil disposal. Leaving plant materials in the greenhouse garbage cans may lead to the spread of insect and disease problems to other locations.

Transgenic Material

The Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) Policy states:

Research that involves the use of recombinant DNA, hazardous biological agents, use of chemicals with vertebrate animals, select agents/toxins, or the construction or use of genetically engineered organisms requires review by the Clemson University Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC).

It is the researcher's responsibility to:

obtain IBC approval according to the NIH Guidelines (Appendix P "Physical and Biological Containment for Recombinant DNA Research Involving Plants"),

Obtain the required authorizations from the institution and from the appropriate federal agency, if needed, for growing transgenic or transporting plants, and

Follow the proper containment level practices and procedures identified in the IBC protocol.

A notation of the use of transgenic organisms should be made on the Application for Greenhouse Services Form. All procedures shall be conducted in accordance with accepted greenhouse practices that are appropriate to the experimental organisms. An inventory of the plant materials required as well as a record of the experiments currently in progress. All transgenic plants, soils and pots must be sterilized before discarding using the autoclave located in the greenhouse.

It is the principal investigator (PIs) responsibility to immediately report any greenhouse accidents involving the inadvertent release or spill of microorganisms to the following:

    Greenhouse Director
    Director of EHS
    Director of Office of Research Compliance

Any questions should be directed to the Director of EHS at 864-656-1806,

Project Requests & Space Allocations

The Greenhouse Reservation Form should be completed and submitted to the BRC Director at least two weeks prior to the initiation of a project. Greenhouse users are encouraged to discuss options available for projects with the Greenhouse Staff and are also asked to suggest appropriate space for the project. Notification will be made within one week of receipt of the Application for Greenhouse Services Form. The request will be:

  • Reviewed and approved with the specific space assigned and availability of that space
  • Reviewed and returned for further information or clarification
  • Rejected with an explanation for the decision. A written appeal may be submitted to the Greenhouse Advisory Committee.
  • Greenhouse space will not be permanently assigned.


Once greenhouse space is assigned, keys will be issued. Keys should be returned immediately upon completion of the project. After-hours and weekend access is limited through the electronically locked door into the headhouse. A list of individuals requiring after-hours access should be provided as part of the request for services. Anyone authorized after-hours access is responsible for building security. All outside doors, corridor access doors and support area doors are to remain locked except during normal working hours.

Biosystems Research Complex
Biosystems Research Complex | 105 Collings Street Clemson University Clemson, SC 29634-0310