The springtime is approaching, which means one thing for lots of us: getting in the garden! Gardening is a passion for many and a pastime for others. It can be rewarding to have a flower border, such as a vegetable patch that you nurture and harvest. It’s also a great way of getting into the open air – especially after the year we’ve had – and can be great exercise. Welcome to our article about The Benefits of Greenhouse Gardening!
However, as every gardener knows, there is one thing that affects when we can get out there: the weather. We can’t control or predict the weather, aside from the forecasts we are provided with that give us some pointers, and gardening in heavy rain and other inclement conditions is not pleasant. You can do something that gets around this somehow, and it’s also of benefit in other ways. We’re talking about putting up a greenhouse.
In the article that follows, we look at the benefits of having a greenhouse, how to choose the right one for your situation, and what you can grow in a greenhouse.
Why Grow In A Greenhouse?
Why invest in a greenhouse? There are many reasons why gardeners choose to have a greenhouse, and the weather is just one of those. A greenhouse is an all-weather area where you can tend to plants whenever you wish. There are many examples of greenhouse kits that you can choose from – we’ll talk more about choosing the right example in more detail later – in various sizes and types, and they can be surprisingly affordable.
A greenhouse also acts as a large propagator. If you want to grow seeds, this is the ideal place to ensure you get maximum growth. It’s the place to start your seeds germinating, and after that is the place to bring them on into plants that are ready to plant out. You’ll find a greenhouse a pleasant experience, and it is very satisfying if you have yet to try growing from seed to watch your plants emerge.
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Greenhouses can be heated in winter, too, so make a great place to over-winter any plants that may not survive frost, and you can also fit them with lights if you need. Put, if you want to get into gardening as a hobby, you will find a greenhouse is invaluable. So, let’s talk about the different types of greenhouse and which is right for you.
How to Choose a Greenhouse
Before we get into the different types of greenhouse and how to choose the best one for you, it’s worth remembering that there is plenty of evidence that gardening is good for your general health. We mentioned the exercise and the satisfaction of growing from seed – and indeed from young plants – and it also exposes us to sunlight that we often lack.
So, you have decided you want a greenhouse: great decision, you certainly will not regret it! The only problem now is finding the right one for your situation. A variety of factors to consider such as:
- Your budget
- The available space you have
- The volume of plants you wish to grow.
Factors To Consider
There is also one further factor: whether you want a traditional glass greenhouse or a polytunnel version. The latter are cheaper and are surprisingly effective, and make a great choice if you are on a strict budget.
If you have limited space and little to spend, we recommend you start by looking at greenhouses that are not walk-in models. These can be useful for people with a small yard, for example, who want to grow tomatoes or fruit, and are made from a plastic frame with plastic covers. However, we’re assuming you’re interested in a full-size greenhouse, so let’s talk about those.
The most popular size for both greenhouses and polytunnels is an 8ft x 6ft model. This may not sound large, but it gives more than adequate space for growing down each length and across the back wall with space to move between. It also takes up only that footprint, so even the smallest yards or gardens will accommodate one.
If you want more greenhouse space, you could consider a larger model, perhaps an 8 x 12ft example which provides a lot more space than you might imagine. The smallest walk-in designs are around the 6x8ft size, and they increase to examples that can be as large as 20ft in length.
Also, knowing that the cheapest and most popular greenhouses are aluminum framed, you may consider wooden-framed instead. These look particularly good alongside period homes. Each type is easy to assemble – you will need more than one person to put a greenhouse up – and we recommend you lay a paving stone base before you build your greenhouse.
Now you have chosen your greenhouse, what are you going to grow?
What to Grow in Your Greenhouse?
Greenhouse gardening is great fun for all ages, so you can get the family involved too. What are you going to grow? The choice is yours, and you can start with a mixture of flowers for the garden alongside vegetables, perhaps from seed.
Vegetables that are surprisingly easy to grow from seed include tomato and cucumber plants and carrots, parsnips, and other root vegetables. Children will love growing potatoes to start in the greenhouse in large pots or bags filled with compost. Flowers such as begonia, dahlia, and many other decorative examples are also for cutting or planting out. Moreover, you also want to grow strawberries or perhaps more exotic fruits in your greenhouse.
The greenhouse will become somewhere you look forward to visiting, and each day will bring more growth from your seeds and seedlings, and we promise that you will find it very rewarding indeed. Have a look at the greenhouse garden in more detail now and check your available outdoor space, and you can get started this spring.
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