Do you dream of having your very own dedicated space for growing flowers, plants, and even your own food year-round?. If you think a greenhouse is out of reach, think again: you can construct a simple structure, at an affordable price, in a weekend’s time. All you need is space in your yard, a few basic supplies, and some elbow grease, and you’ll have a functional greenhouse in no time.
Any greenhouse has four basic requirements:
- Warmth: a heating system (mechanical or natural)
- Moisture: an irrigation system (manual or automated)
- Protection: from the elements and pests
- Control: of air circulation and temperature (with electrical systems or by manual maintenance)
- The plastic film that covers your greenhouse will degrade in a few years and need to be replaced. The ideal method of disposal is recycling, but agricultural plastic recycling is not available everywhere, so consider storing it until you can dispose of it in an environmentally friendly manner.
- This type of greenhouse is not good for areas that receive high winds or heavy snows. To prevent against collapse under snow, reinforce the greenhouse midrib with EMT conduit or steel rebar.
- Choose wood for your foundation and door frames that is long-lasting and sustainable. Cedar, cypress, and hemlock are affordable options; redwood is also a good choice but is more expensive.
- To keep conditions more constant, you can cover your greenhouse with a shade cloth, or locate it near deciduous trees that provide some natural afternoon shade.