Pamela Harlow via pbs
Fri, 08 Jan 2021 08:53:18 PST
This has been a fascinating thread.  Perhaps the biggest lesson is to
understand the climate and site particulars where the greenhouse will be
used, as well as the requirements of the desired plants.  Regional
greenhouse users and suppliers can help with this.

A practical means of mouse-proofing the floor is via heavy landscape
fabric.  I used treated lumber for the foundation.  This enabled me to
staple the fabric to the wood all around the periphery, carefully smoothing
ripples and folds.  It can be done.  I hand-sewed the overlapping floor
strips together.  The only problem with a fabric floor is that silt can
eventually plug the fabric weave, slowing drainage.  Heavy treatment with a
shop vac when the floor is dry will help.

I concur that no greenhouse is large enough!  However, careful bench design
can maximize plant space, especially if the greenhouse has some width to
work with.  But, that would be another thread!


On Fri, Jan 8, 2021 at 8:17 AM Johannes-Ulrich Urban via pbs <> wrote:

> Hello Luminita,
> There are so many excellent comments on greenhouses, here is my personal
> experience.
> I am on my fourth greenhouse here in Portugal and I would recommend the
> following: as much ventilation as possible. Many comments have stated that,
> it cannot be overdone. I noticed that some of the models in the attached
> catalogue do not have enough windows or louvres. Do order as many extra
> ones as possible! I prefer widows because louvres are not closing tight
> enough when it comes to heating, otherwise they are fine as you can direct
> the air flow. I use non electric automatic openers, very reliable.
> Shading: try to get a structure for (removable) shade cloth on top of the
> structure which bears the glass. If there is a space between shade cloth
> and glass which allows air to circulate, shading will be more efficient
> than with shade cloth lying directly on the glass. This is my problem right
> now. This space has to be big enough to allow the windows in the roof to
> open fully. At the same time such an extra structure is a perfect
> protection against hail damage.
> If the shading is removable in winter you gain a lot of light and warmth.
> The door: try to choose a model which is tall enough so that the door can
> be put anywhere. This gives you a lot of flexibility. Make sure the door is
> wide if you need to move large plants, bulky material or a wheelbarrow.
> Mice: make it mouse proof from the beginning. Stand the frame on  a floor
> of slabs or make a concrete or wall foundation deep enough to stop mice
> from digging underneath.
> Choice of glass: take greatest care which material you choose. Classic
> single pane glass, double glass (very good insulation but EXTREMELY heavy
> to manipulate) acrylic glass or polycarbonate glass and also horticultural
> films. All these materials have their own advantage and disadvantage and,
> very important, all have different properties when it comes to light
> transmission. I lost an entire winter growing Oxalis collection when it was
> moved from a greenhouse with acrylic glass in the roof to another one which
> had triple glass required by the local building authorities. The triple
> glass in the roof absorbed so much of the light spectrum (unnoticed by the
> human eye) that the Oxalis dwindled away within two or three years. There
> are high tech professional horticultural films with almost 100 percent
> light and spectrum transmission. It all depends on what you want to grow
> and at which season you want to use your greenhouse.
> And last but not least...... I can only confirm that a greenhouse should
> be as big as ever possible...... not only for space reasons but also
> because it becomes the easier to manage temperature wise the bigger it is.
> It will be the place in your garden where you will spend most of your
> time....
> I am also more than happy to answer more questions.
> Happy planning!
> Uli
> Please find attached a picture of my current greenhouse. Note that the
> walls are high enough so that the door could be anywhere. And note that the
> shade cloth is directly on the glass which is a compromise. The walls will
> be painted with white reflecting paint in summer. And yes, there are not
> enough windows..... 5 in the roof and 4 in the walls.
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