For people who are keen gardeners having your greenhouse is a dream come true. It is a place where you can take care of your plants, plant your seeds, nurture your saplings and so on. It is also a great area for putting outdoor potted plants when the weather turns bad, and a place you can store all your gardening tools and gear.
You can grow whatever you want, plants, flowers, vegetables, it is a place you can potter around in for hours a day if you so wish. If you love gardening and are thinking about building your own greenhouse here is some advice for you to consider in your planning stage.
A hothouse of growth
Greenhouses are meant to maintain a controlled temperature inside, they should protect from the rain, snow and wind, and should trap gases and heat for the plants. Therefore you cannot make a greenhouse out of just any material – commonly they are made of glass, or there is a plastic that works too, but it has to be the right kind.
Building your own greenhouse therefore is not really something you can do on a budget that cuts corners. It will take some spending to not just build a working greenhouse but also to maintain it. But if gardening is your passion then it is money well spent, plus any produce you grow will save you long term money!
Where you are going to put it
Key to having a good location when building your own greenhouse is somewhere that will get the most sunlight possible in an open space, not in shade or near trees. You also need somewhere good for water drainage for when it rains, but also somewhere that you can get utilities too such as electricity and water.
Selecting the type of greenhouse that suits you
There are different types of greenhouses so you need to decide which suits your needs. Do you want an attached greenhouse on the side of your house out of which you could have a even-span, lean to or window mounted. This means the house acts as a support for the structure, it is one of the cheaper options and it is certainly close to utilities, but space and size is usually restricted. Or you can choose freestanding that are built in an open space away from the house which are more expensive but can be made as large as you want.
Using the right foundation
It is important to have a foundation when building your own greenhouse and you can choose wooden or concrete. If the greenhouse is temporary or you may be moving it around then a wooden foundation is best but if you have a permanent place for it then go with concrete. Make sure there is drainage and that you have enough room for a work area and storage as well as all your plants.
Choosing your building materials
Material is important for temperature control so your options are glass, fiberglass, polycarbonate glazing sheets or polyethylene film. Ideally if you have the money go with glass. It is strong and durable, good for retaining humidity and heat, and it is pleasing to the eye.
When building your own greenhouse you need to make sure the frame is done right, that it is properly covered and well insulated. A heating system needs to be attached something like gas heaters that have polyethylene vent tubes. There are also solar powered heaters if you prefer. For summer months you will need a cooling system too, as well as having some wooden screens to put around the greenhouse during the hot months and using green latex paint which is a good coolant.