There are a lot of similarities between constructing a house and a greenhouse. Greenhouse plans should be well designed and all the factors should be considered. The greenhouse design you choose will depend on location, architecture, cost the overall growing area needed.
You want to create the ideal environment for your plants to grow in and that is the most important factor to consider. If you decide to go ahead and build your own greenhouse, then you should take into account the following factors;
- Greenhouse location
- Type of greenhouse
- Flooring and type of Foundation
- Materials needed for construction
- Systems for the Environment
1) The Location of your Greenhouse
The most important factor to consider when building your greenhouse from plans. Ideally, you want to have a spot in the sun. The more sunlight exposure you get, the more effective the greenhouse will be. Plants grow best if they are exposed to morning sunlight. The earlier in the day the processing starts the better.
Choose the east side of your house where possible as to get the most out of sunrise. This is particularly important form Nov. to Feb. Never ever build your greenhouse on the North side of any structure. There is no light and your greenhouse will fail. Be wary of any trees near the greenhouse and make sure that the shade they provide will not interfere. If you’re limited for choice then go South to East.
Good drainage is also an important factor to consider when choosing location. Accessibility to water and electricity as well as heat must be taken into account. Last but not least, it must be convenient for you to reach.
2) What Type of Greenhouse should I Build?
There are 2 basic types; the free-standing structure and the lean-to type which can be attached to your garage or home. The free standing greenhouse comes in different options as well. You can opt for the variety that is directly attached to your home or garage. The benefits are that this type of greenhouse will have ready access to heat, electricity and water. The drawback is that it can have limited ventilation and sunlight, but they tend to be the least expensive.
The most expensive of the lean-to varieties are the even span option. One gable end is attached to
a structure and this has many benefits. For one it has the best airflow and that helps to maintain temperature. Another would be the availability of lots of space. You also get a window mounted type of lean-to greenhouse. This is predominantly a glass enclosure and would generally extend about a foot from your window. If you’re only looking to grow a few plants and to save a bit of money, then this would be the option for you.
The free standing type of greenhouse would not be limited by space for they are free standing structures as the name suggests. These types of greenhouses would normally require their own heating, electricity and water sources.
Always make sure that you have enough space when looking at greenhouse plans. Think storage, benches and growing area for the plants. The minimum area to be advised would be 6 x 12 ft. when looking at a free standing or even span greenhouse.
3) Flooring and types of Foundation
It would be considered crucial that the plan for the foundation comes with the manufacturers of the frame. This is particularly true of double wall-plastic and glass frames. A little elevation would also be recommended so that water will have space to flow. Flooring should never be permanent since the wet soil might make it slippery. It would be advisable to build a walkway made of gravel or stone. This will make it easy to reach all parts of the greenhouse.
4) Materials for the Structure to use
Just like a house, your greenhouse should have a solid foundation. Always consider the weather. Choosing a frame will leave you with a few options. Most of the time the materials used in constructing a greenhouse are wood and metal. Metals pipes and wood are the most common in diy projects. The shape of the frame is up to you. Your options are a-frame, rigid-frame, gothic, Quonset and post and rafter.
Your greenhouse will also need a covering and you will have to decide on the materials to be used. It is important that the covering complements the frame choice. The idea behind the covering is obviously to trap heat. Also consider the life-span when you choose the cheaper options. Most commonly used are; glass, film plastic, fiberglass and double wall-plastics.
5) Systems for the Environment
Once all your greenhouse plans are in place, you have to consider maintenance. Plants in your greenhouse will require more than just heat and sunlight to grow. You will have to take into consideration elements such as lighting systems, cooling, ventilation, heating elements and automation.
Choose your greenhouse plans carefully for the challenge might be more demanding than you think. Doing the right research and homework is key to your greenhouse growing success. Making the right decision will be the difference between bragging rights over your ‘green fingers’ and possible failure.
I hope this website will be able to help you in making the right decision. Here’s to your greenhouse success!