by Truman Perkins
So what is a greenhouse? A greenhouse is a structure made of translucent/transparent material such as polyethylene or grass. In this grow unit, the temperature is absorbed to facilitate the plants to thrive in a controlled climatic condition. Many homeowners want to start a DIY greenhouse but keep procrastinating. Perhaps insecure about the space or financial capacity needed. This article intends to educate you on how to make a small greenhouse.
A small greenhouse is a cost-effective project to build and run. Having a greenhouse structure, you don’t have to follow seasons to begin gardening. You can germinate vegetables, flowers, and fruit seedlings and grow them throughout the year. Read more to explore the benefits of having a small greenhouse and tips to make a reliable small grow room.
One of the greatest advantages of having a small greenhouse kit is that you enjoy a longer growing season. This is possible in a grow box because internal conditions are stimulated according to your needs. The internal conditions do not depend on the external environment, and functions are controlled to run independently. Another merit is that you can cultivate in any weather throughout the year. It is you to protect your plant growth against harmful external changes.
In terrestrial gardening, the growing is protected from pests and predators like rats and squirrels, which are nuisances in an open area. Finally, you cannot fail to mention that in greenhouse gardening, there is no need for pesticides and other farm chemicals. This saves not only your financial resources but saves the environment from hazardous chemicals compounds.
When getting started, the first thing to do is ensure that your plant house location is perfect. Agriculturist advises that choosing a place with partial shades can facilitate better growth. The reason being, plants will need more sunlight and heat to thrive well in hardiness zones 1-6. The plants require sufficient exposure to sunlight.
However, if you are located in places with high temperatures, it is recommendable having some shades. This will protect your plants from over-exposure to heat and sun rays. You can also use a piece of a greenhouse cover if there is not enough shade in the location. Further, the landscape should be leveled well to raise a nursery bed can be a stress-free task.
When it comes to greenhouse style, the options are endless. What you choose depends on your ability and personal preference. Therefore, it is up to you whether you want a free-standing, window-mounted, or tabletop. However, ensure it has sufficient sunlight exposure so the plant can grow healthily.
Moreover, depending on what you will grow in your hydroponic system, the style you choose should have sufficient interior space to accommodate. Although we are stressing on small type, keep in mind that there is a limit for efficiency; too small can be hard to reach. In small options, it’s hard to regulate temperature and airflow. You should access it when you need to unlatch a hinged door, remove the lid, or lift the greenhouse plastic covers.
Make a plan about the design of your greenhouse. The following aspects should give you a bearing of the ideal hydroponic unit to make.
Size preference. You do not need a large area to erect your grow room. A small area like 30 sq ft or so can be good enough to grow almost any vegetable for your home needs. A small wooden box, a tunnel passage can be converted into a grow box.
Structure and shape. How you structure or shape your glasshouse has a big impact on the development of the crop. Any shape you choose for a greenhouse is equally good as long as it allows sufficient sunlight, offers reliable drainage, and is properly ventilated. Since this point is where you invest more of your money and time, it is recommendable to spend proper time doing research. Especially if you are a novice, do not pick just any structure but first, consult with friends or professionals to make a solid decision.
Well, yeah, after making decisions on location, working out the type, choice of material comes as the fourth step. For security reasons, if you are a novice in this industry, it would be priceless to build the entire structure following the greenhouse kit. However, if you have prior experience, then make a careful decision. We are stressing this point because the material chosen has a greater impact on the quality of the greenhouse. Material majorly determines the system insulation capability, strength, and durability.
Therefore, materials like polycarbonate or fiberglass offer better sunlight absorption, insulating properties, and strength relative to plastic or wood. But when it comes to framing, pressure-treated woods are eco-friendly and offer reliable support.
If you lack simple carpentry or woodworking skills, it’s beet seeking help from an expert. A good handyperson will help you set proper measurements within your available or intended space. You will also fix frames right to the panel, connect the ventilators, and fit doors leaving no unnecessary space. This will help you achieve a strong structure that will not leak in adverse external climatic conditions that would otherwise mess with the growth. On the other hand, if you prefer to take a DIY path, a simple search from the internet will give you various plans on setting a simple greenhouse plastic. The online guides will give precise guides and tools needed for the job.
After erecting the structure with well-installed doors and ventilation points, this 6th step is vital as it makes your greenhouse sustainable. It is the part that controls the growing conditions that function for the health of plants.
You will need a reliable irrigation method or source of water to sustain your growth. If you beginner, it may take some time before understanding ideal watering patterns. However, for experienced, the process is smooth, and you can save money by skipping irrigation installation funds. The challenge is knowing when to water and how much to water because underwatering and overdoing it has repercussions. Where possible, installing an automatic watering system through the reservoir is the best route to overcome watering uncertainties.
Plants require moderate temperature to carry out growth and production processes at various stages. Therefore, when sunlight is limited or during winter, temperatures become too low, and a heating system is essential. Electric heating supplies are the most convenient and efficient heating sources. If you choose electric heaters, go for those with fans and thermostats as they automatically switch on/off, preventing overheating. However, when there is no electrical connection available, you can use cheap alternative sources of heating. Some available heating options include water heaters, gas heaters, oil heaters, convection tubing, etc.
While the system runs watering and heating, a humidifier intensifies the humidity in the greenhouse to a destructive range. Additionally, high humidity can lead to a rise in temperature even when the heating system is not running, thus altering some of the growing processes.
Therefore, you need ventilators which you open vents periodically to allow exchange with fresh air. Especially if you are running oil or gas heaters that release toxic fumes, ventilators are often open, or else your vegetation can damage. However, with electrical, mechanical ventilators, you can purify the system without adding any outlet. So, ventilation equipment helps in cooling and refreshing the greenhouse.
Even after carefully following the suggestions and steps described above, it is worth conducting a routine check on your greenhouse. This will help unveil issues that could affect your yield vastly. Some things you can easily forget, for instance, checking the drainage system. For the vegetables to grow fast and healthy, proper drainage is a must. Another thing is the ventilation. If you use a fan for ventilation, keep a check to ensure it is working optimally, as dirt can easily lock its wings.
The heating system also is a common item that may malfunction for so many reasons, thus ensure you check it out. Keep checking if any pest or disease has found its way into the greenhouse, and it happens when vents are open. Finally, check if no damages or tearing on the grow tent could create a way for harmful crawlers.
Manual or DIY-designed greenhouses are cost-effective. Making your mini greenhouse is just a matter of having confidence; space and cost should not be your limiting factor. This article offers clear tips on how to make a small greenhouse without incurring huge financial costs. Maintenance is one of the predicaments discouraging some novice gardeners, but proper training can solve that limitation. Be creative and make your small greenhouse garden unique!
About Truman Perkins
Truman Perkins has worked as the SEO consultant for over a decade; there he's helped so many startups and friends' sites get off the ground. Believing gardening is a natural stress reliever, Truman indulges in learning and writing about gardening in his free time. He lives with his wife, Jenny, and their twins in Detroit, Michigan.