Thinking of a greenhouse

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

12:28 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #1

Now I have finally got the trailer away from the hardstanding in the garden I am thinking about what style of greenhouse to have.
There are a couple of things that I am definate about. The location has to be a lean-to style against a north facing wall. I fancy one that has the door in the centre of the long side rather than at the end.
I am considering one 6' wide x 10' long (it's grown from 8' already )
Now for the questions. How much ventilation should I have? I was thinking of two roof vents and a vent at each end.
What should I use for heat? I will be overwintering, so only very limited frosts here plus growing seeds which will be the main reason for the greenhouse.
Is it a good idea to have some form of strip light in there? I was wondering whether I should have one on the back wall to stop everything straining towards the light on the other side.
I was considering having narrow, removeable, shelves on the wall side just one seedtray deep for the panic time of year. What thoughts on this?
Is it good to have one of those compost benches rather than just having shelving, or would a large tray on the shelving be just as good?
What other expenses am I likely to have to allow for and is there anything that I should programme in now so that I don't kick myself in twelve months time?
Well that'll do for starters
Quote
Like
Share

Rich
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Rich
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Joined: 9:15 AM - Mar 04, 2003

1:43 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #2

It sounds like we are looking at the same model. I shall be interested to see what peoplw say about this.
You are what you drink, and I'm a bitter man.





There 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.
Quote
Like
Share

cwmhill
Mature Shrub
Mature Shrub
cwmhill
Mature Shrub
Mature Shrub
Joined: 8:02 AM - Jan 23, 2003

3:08 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #3

www.greenhousesdirect.co....rhino.html
these are good and strong you will need them with your wind, (not persnoal wind ) they are very helpfull they try and do what you want if you ask them
cwm
CWM
Quote
Like
Share

scotia10
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
scotia10
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Joined: 2:12 AM - Jun 24, 2003

4:09 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #4

Hi Pip;
I basically agree with what you have already thought of, I have added the following for things for you might want to consider.
>> How much ventilation should I have? I was thinking of two roof vents and a vent at each end.
As you say two top one either end.
Keep the end ones lowish, this will give better circulation.
>>What should I use for heat?
I would go for a soil cable with thermostat.
These are very ecconomical to run.(mines is 80 watt)
It means you can leave it a low setting for general winter protection and raise the temperature when germinating seed & taking cuttings.
I have drawn a sketch of what I would do i regards to shelving.
p.s. Put in a double 'waterproof' electric socket with RCD protection in the middle, and possibly at bench height.



http://www.thegardenersalmanac.co.uk
Quote
Like
Share

macywack
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
macywack
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
Joined: 11:05 AM - Jun 09, 2003

5:09 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #5

North facing wall Pip, NO sun ???
macy
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

5:13 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #6

I'm thinking of using dovetail greenhouses Cwm for exactly the same reason. Everyone that has bought one in this area has been very happy with them so far.
Thanks Scotia for your ideas and plan. Now I can progress with the planning
Virtually no sun Macy, but plenty of light. No choice I'm afraid, it has to go there. At least I wont have to worry about shading the greenhouse in summer
Quote
Like
Share

DeeDee571
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
DeeDee571
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
Joined: 7:28 PM - Oct 23, 2003

5:45 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #7

Pip are you looking to use the lighting for you to see what you are doing in your midnight forays or as an aid to plant growth?
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

6:11 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #8

As an aid to plant growth Dee Dee. I can imagine all my seedlings straining their little heads in one direction otherwise. I may be wrong about this but it was just a thought.
Quote
Like
Share

moth01
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
moth01
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 2:07 AM - Mar 05, 2003

7:17 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #9

just want to add get the largest greenhouse that you can. as you will find afterwards that they are never big enough.
from Moth
Quote
Like
Share

Jean78
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Jean78
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Joined: 2:44 AM - Aug 16, 2002

8:00 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #10

Pip, how about this company?
www.isgreenhouses.co.uk/h...eanto.html
Quote
Like
Share

DeeDee571
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
DeeDee571
Plug Plant
Plug Plant
Joined: 7:28 PM - Oct 23, 2003

9:52 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #11

As a growth aid Pip, the lights need to be pretty close to the plants 2'-4' and you need a special type of tube, one that supplies the correct spectrum for plants. It can be quite tricky getting the balance between heat and light correct, but if you are thinking of spending money on getting the electrics and heat in there it shouldn't be too expensive.
Quote
Like
Share

moth01
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
moth01
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 2:07 AM - Mar 05, 2003

11:18 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #12

we have a little fan heater that is thermostatly contol and also an electric Fan to circulate the air around too.
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

11:27 PM - Mar 22, 2004 #13

I've got no problem with electricity DeeDee as the greenhouse is going onto a wall where there is already an external power socket. The garage is just the other side with light, power and water
Is the type of light I would need the same sort of thing as I use when I am painting - watercolours that is, not emulsion - I use daylight bulbs.
I was wondering about a small thermostatically controlled fan heater originally Moth, although I'm going to look into what Scotia suggested. I definately dont think I need anything to make the air circulate. One vent open half and inch and I will have plenty
Quote
Like
Share

Laura Penstemon
Established Tree
Established Tree
Laura Penstemon
Established Tree
Established Tree
Joined: 6:05 AM - Oct 11, 2002

12:31 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #14

This is very interesting, as I plan to have a 'proper' greenhouse when I move. The one I have here is big but leaks and is very expensive to heat etc.
I would have proper lighting too Pip, as evening forays into the greenhouse are a must. Also get yourself a nice radio/CD player out there and enjoy music or whatever with that cup of tea, not to mention the odd glass of wine in the evening

Pens
Quote
Like
Share

Guest
Guest

12:37 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #15

Something similar to those daylight bulbs Pip, for seedling growth you are best off with Metal Halide as this produces a lot of light in the blue end of the spectrum which is exactly what you need to promote good heathy leaves. natural sunlight is mimiced with these lamps. The light does need to be quite intense though, hence the short distance between the plants and the tube/bulb. There are quite a few suppliers who will be able to advise you on the best fittings and wattage once you have decided on the size of the greenhouse.
I think the soil warming cable is a great thing to use, although a fan heater does have the distinct advantage of moving the air in the really cold days when you don't want to open the vents, I found it really does help prevent moulds on overwintering plants, especially when the greenhouse is tucked up with bubble wrap, which encourages condensation.
Quote
Share

Rich
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Rich
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Joined: 9:15 AM - Mar 04, 2003

1:49 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #16

I am considering this one
Elite Kensington Lean-to Greenhouse

You are what you drink, and I'm a bitter man.





There 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

8:43 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #17

Thanks DeeDee. Crumbs there is lots to learn isnt there?
I like to get to know everything that I may want to have so then I can sift through and decide on what I would like to begin with and lay plans in place for the future at the same time.
Rich, it looks like we are looking at very similar greenhouses. The one I fancy is here - The Senator.
Hopefully I will get one stage closer today when the guys doing the garden wall/fence brick up one of the windows to the garage.
Quote
Like
Share

Beaver97
Mature Shrub
Mature Shrub
Beaver97
Mature Shrub
Mature Shrub
Joined: 11:37 PM - Oct 17, 2002

10:45 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #18

Pip.
I would suggest a potting bench be included in the mix somewhere.
Worktop at a suitable height so you don't have to bend over to use it, with a bit of space underneath for a few buckets of compost, sand, gravel etc. and a shelf for the hand tools you use when dibbing, pricking-out and potting-on.
It need not be very large, just enough worktop for a couple of seed trays and a mixing bowl should do.
Saves a trip to the shed/garage for all those bit's you've nowhere else to keep.
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

12:01 PM - Mar 23, 2004 #19

Great, thanks Beaver. That has reminded me to have a worktop that is high enough to suit me. The one thing that always gets to me is that nothing is high enough when I'm potting up and I end up with rotten backache.
Quote
Like
Share

scotia10
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
scotia10
Herbaceous Perennial
Herbaceous Perennial
Joined: 2:12 AM - Jun 24, 2003

2:06 PM - Mar 23, 2004 #20

Have you taken all that great information Pip?
I think to decide what you want, you have got to think in reverse so to speak.
Firstly decide what you want a green house for. OK you covered that.
Do you want it heated?
If you are only going to be storing a few plants the cost of heating might exceed the cost of buying new plants.
Do you just want it heated at germination /cutting time?
Then contain the heat locally within the greenhouse, e.g. a hot bed, hot mat, a propagator, a cover over the bench.
These take a lot less heating than heating the whole greenhouse. The other thing is, you have cooler places within the greenhouse to move things to when necessary.
Someone mentioned a Fan heater, again this is a good idea, but do you need one?
Even up here in the wild and woolly North I rarely put mines on, and as you have said your conditions are relatively mild because of your closeness to the sea.
n.b. I will add an extract from my website at the end of this article, relating to the heating set up I have.
I would like to mention that what I have is for optimum conditions. For example this winter I have only had to put my fan heater on for two nights.
Lights? Again similar applies, Do you want them to assist growing or for just general lighting?
A strip light on the roof will give you sufficient light for general work in the greenhouse.
If you want it for growing assistance you will require a special light.
Proper ones are quite expensive so if only growing a few plants in this manner think twice about cost/usage/benefits

If you decide to have one this would be best located over the heated area e.g. the workbench.
A thought always to keep in mind.........Keeping potted plants a bit on the dry side when stored keeps the temperature up a couple of degrees.

Lining the greenhouse also adds a couple of degrees to the inside temperature.
Meaning if it is 0C (32F) outside it could be 4C (40F) and thats without any form of heat.
Finally let me remind you of my set up;
* Insulation; In winter I insulate the outside rather than the inside, I find this method of insulating keeps my greenhouse much dryer i.e. less condensation forms and gives me more space. It also easier to fix in place otherwise I would have to remove and refit the shelving.
n.b. My greenhouse is in a relatively well protected spot,and it is a timber greenhouse so I can fix the lining quite well to prevent the lining being blown off.
* Heating; For economic reasons I have three forms of heat concentrated at various levels rather a general temperature throughout the greenhouse they are as follows;
* General heating;
When I require frost free conditions I run a thermostatically controlled fan heater at around 35-40F(3-5C).
When I start up my seed and cutting programme in January/February I raise the fan heater temperature to maintain a general temperature of around 50F(10C).
* Bottom heat;
I have a thermostatically controlled heated bench for rooting cuttings or germinating seed that require a temperature of between 50/60F (10/15C).
The 7x 2.6(2.1m x 0.75m) hot bed is a box formed with tanalised timber and lined with 1(25mm) thick polystyrene sheets filled with river sand.
In the sand, is placed an 80(24m) 300watt soil warming cable controlled by a Rodstat
* High level heating;
When temperatures of 65F(15C) and above are required, I use a purpose made thermostatically controlled propagator (575m x 290mm), which I manually adjust to the desired temperature.
* Lighting;
I use a time controlled fluorescent light above the hotbed to supplement the poor natural light of the winter months, thus speeding up growing/rooting times.
Sorry for the 'epic thesis' but I think I know how you feel and are thinking, I was the same when I bought my last greenhouse.
At least you have plenty to think about now, and you have the benefit of some great advisors around you I didn't!

http://www.thegardenersalmanac.co.uk
Quote
Like
Share

Guest
Guest

7:28 PM - Mar 23, 2004 #21

great investment!
LouisaStaff Sergeant Loopy
Quote
Share

Tsu1
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Tsu1
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 9:35 AM - Jan 28, 2003

12:19 AM - Mar 25, 2004 #22

Rather than lighting, how about something reflective on the wall to bounce back the natural light? (some sort of foil or mirror perhaps)
Tsu
Quote
Like
Share

pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
pipnsox
Flowering Annual
Flowering Annual
Joined: 5:18 PM - Aug 02, 2002

9:29 AM - Mar 25, 2004 #23

Thank you so much for all your ideas. This is going to be a real major project, just sorting out exactly what I want to do and making allowances for any extra growth that may crop up.
I just hate it when you get something new, only to find out that if you had done things slightly different life would have been much easier.
Quote
Like
Share

C.A.
Champion Tree
Champion Tree
C.A.
Champion Tree
Champion Tree
Joined: 2:21 AM - Sep 22, 2002

10:33 PM - Mar 26, 2004 #24

Make sure any sockets you have are at waist height Pip. Ours are near the ground and I can't see whether they're switched on unless I bend double (knees don't do bending in my body!!) and - in case you're wondering why I can't just look down - the sockets are enclosed in a waterproof casing which hides the switch when viewed from above.
Quote
Like
Share