If your gaden design includes a greenhouse, read on. Any garden, however small, can house a glass structure of some type. Any greenhouse, however small, will add a new dimension to your garden.
All kinds of shapes and a wide range of sizes can be found, but the basic difference between one type and another will be the minimum temperature at which its kept. The cold house is certainly the easiest – no artificial means of heat are provided and so in the depths of winter the temperature can fall below freezing (33 deg. F). In spite of this vulnerability to frost, the cold house extends the growing season by trapping the sun’s heat during the day. This allows you to work protected from the elements with plants that are sheltered from the wind and rain. You and your plants can enjoy day temperatures that are appreciably higher than the warmth outdoors.
Tomatoes are the favourite crop, during the rest of the year there is cuttings to consider, seeds to raise and vegetables to force on. The range of the unheated greenhouse is limited. You cannot grow frost-sensitive plants between late autumn and mid spring unless you supply heat. The standard practice is to transform it into a cool house (minimum temperature of 45 deg. F) and so open a whole new world. Now ‘greenhouse plants’ may be grown – Palms, Orchids, Fucsias and so on. Half-hardy bedding plants can be raised for the garden and a year round display of blooms can be created for either greenhouse or living room.The installation of a heater transforms growing under glass into a year-round hobby.
The average sized greenhouse (8 ft long x 6 ft wide) would cost somewhere in the region of 200 – 300 if staging etc. is to be fitted. Before making this investment, carefully consider the points not made in many textbooks. Constant attention is needed, and that means every single day during the summer months. There will be watering, feeding, ventilating, misting and so on to do. There’s also the fuel – keeping an 8 x 6 ft. house at a minimum of 45 deg. F will cost over 100 during an average winter.
The aim of the previous paragraph isn’t to discourage you, it is to avoid adding to the amount of greenhouses owned by individuals with limited time to spare who after a year or two allow the structure to become a home for pots, boxes and various pieces of household equipment.
On a much more encouraging note, most people who buy a greenhouse tend to run out of space for all the exciting things they want to grow. For them there is a different warning. If you have the time, money and are keen on growing things – buy the next size bigger than you have planned! Keep it as a cool house – the attraction of having a warm house (minimum temperature 55 – 60 deg. F) for exotics is obvious, but your fuel bill may very well be as high as 300 per year. Unfortunately stove houses (minimum temperature 65 deg. F) have almost disappeared.
greenhouse, garden, garden design, tomatoes, serviceteam, palm trees, orchids, fucsias