A greenhouse is a great asset to any garden, providing warmth and protection not only to growing plants but to gardeners checking and tending to their plants year round.
Greenhouses are mostly used for:
Starting seeds earlier
Winter over tender plants
Grow exotic plants
Grow vegetables year round
Using the Autumn sun to raise late salad crops and beans.
TIMBER OR ALLUMINUM?
Neither Timber or Alluminum is the the ‘best’ or ‘right’ choice, there are different factors to concider: A Timber greenhouse is a natural structure that blends easily into the garden landscape. Wood retains heat therefor the interior temperature of the greenhouse remains more stable, but they can be more expensive and will require some maintainance, although the finest quallity cedar structures or pressure treated wood are extreemly durable. Aluminium Greenhouses tend to be less expensive, are low maintenance and rust resistant, not needing any paint or protection. They can be easier to assemble. The down side of aluminium is heat loss, fuel costs for a heated greenhouse will be higher than a timber version. Both Wooden and Aluminium Greenhouses require a base, come in a huge variety of shapes and sizes and of varying budgets.
WHERE TO PUT YOUR GREENHOUSE:
Choose a level, clean site in a low-traffic area. Your greenhouse should receive the maximum amount of winter sunlight available. Be sure to consider the following: The change in angle of the sun, summer to winter Shadows cast by existing structures and/or trees Growing trees: will they shade the greenhouse in the future? If you intend to heat the greenhouse with electrical heaters, the closer it is to the house, the cheaper it will be to install the electricity. Try to allow at least 2ft of access space around the greenhouse for cleaning or making repairs. A greenhouse offers four seasons of gardening pleasure. Here are ideas for using a greenhouse during each growing season.
Spring: Start seeds in trays inside the greenhouse. As the seedlings emerge, transplant them into larger pots and keep them in the greenhouse until all danger of frost is past.
Summer: Start fall flowers, perennials and other plants inside the greenhouse. Fall: Start holiday plants like amaryllis bulbs inside the greenhouse. You can also force Christmas cactus to bloom. Place houseplants that won’t fit on sunny windowsills inside your home in the greenhouse.
Winter: Use the greenhouse to grow some cold-hardy vegetables such as lettuce. Protect tender herbs and annuals you want to save, such as geraniums, by growing them in the greenhouse throughout the winter months.
IN YOUR GREENHOUSE NOW
Sow fast-growing tender plants such as courgettes, squashes and pumpkins, cucumbers, French beans, melons and sweetcorn so they are ready for planting in their final positions under glass in late spring or outside in early summer. A heated propagator will help ensure germination Buy ready-grown pepper and tomato plants for introducing to unheated greenhouses Sow basil for growing on indoors or moving outside in summer.