ROBERT JOHNSON

Greenhouse - What would you differently now?

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Hi I'm about to set up a greenhouse and thought it would be sensible to ask for advice as I'm new to greenhouses.

I thought I would ask what in hindsight you would change with your greenhouse or perhaps what you decided to do which has worked really well.

I suppose the obvious one is buy a bigger greenhouse but that goes without saying!

Any tips would be appreciated.

I intend to grow mainly Sarracenia but that may change as the `hobby' takes hold 

Robert   

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To start the ball rolling I would say...

  1. make sure you have a good level base down
  2. while you're putting the base in make some provision to get power in the GH.
  3. decide where your water butts will be going.  Does the base need to be big enough to accommodate them as well as the GH

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Make sure the greenhouses are bolted down securely. They may look heavy, but they will move in the wind. Maybe not enough to blow over, but they will 'creep' ever so slowly, twisting the frame and putting pressure on the glass.

Choose your spot carefully. Maximise the amount of sun it will gather for Sarracenia.

Make your base larger to accommodate water butts and maybe done outside trays for growing purps.

Make sure you are buying the biggest you can afford. You will fill it up quickly, and an extra greenhouse/base if far more costly!

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Make sure the greenhouses are bolted down securely. They may look heavy, but they will move in the wind. Maybe not enough to blow over, but they will 'creep' ever so slowly, twisting the frame and putting pressure on the glass.

Choose your spot carefully. Maximise the amount of sun it will gather for Sarracenia.

Make your base larger to accommodate water butts and maybe done outside trays for growing purps.

Make sure you are buying the biggest you can afford. You will fill it up quickly, and an extra greenhouse/base if far more costly!

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This popped up in my feed at the right time. I'm getting my greenhouse on Sunday. (Got to dismantle and move it first) the base was in my garden already so that's one less job for me. Just got to clear all the rubbish away first. I'm gonna be bolting it down and cement it too. Then I'm planning to build a horse shoe shaped area next to it for purpurea


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Hi All and thanks for your responses.

The web site seems to have just come back to life having been inaccessible all day.

My plan so far is to dig a foundation trench to fit the base. I will then lay 2 - 3 courses of bricks to lift the greenhouse slightly. The eaves are already 5ft

Insert a tube next to where the door will fit for an electric supply later.

The inside of the foundation will be dug out slightly and the floor, probably paving slabs, laid on gravel and sand for drainage.

The water butt will be sited at the other end from the door and extra solid area provided to stand it on.

Hopefully I'll get this done before the greenhouse arrives.

Regards

Robert

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get as many water butts as you can! you can soon run dry if you're not careful. One butt is no good,it won't last long in a dry spell

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Hi Ada

I already have a 100 litre butt attached to the house. Thought I would swap that for 200 and put the smaller butt on the greenhouse. I only have a few plants as yet so hopefully that would be enough. I believe I could always daisy chain another butt later

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Might be worth checking you tap water quality as well.  Where i live we get our water from wales and ive been using it for waterings cps for years, its worth knowing for emergencies what your water quality is like.

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You could ask the local water company, they should provide the info, often its online on their website somewhere.  Its probably allways better to use rainwater, but soft tapwater does very well in dry periods.

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Make sure the base is dead-level.  I bought a 2nd greenhouse last year and moved our shed so we could reuse the existing base.  I forgot that when the shed base was put in it had a slight fall for drainage, only about 2cm in 8 foot but it was enough for the greenhouse fitter to refuse to come until we'd had the base relayed.  Expensive mistake but the greenhouse won't be square and the glass may not fit right if it's not dead-level!

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Hi, I'd agree with all comments so far!

* The base - make it better than you think is needed. It may be there a long time. I didn't and layed what I thought was sufficient good (25 years ago) with paving slabs on top. Even so there has been some shift.

* Go BIG!! I got a 13 by 8 and it's been too small for years.

* Plan the power fully at build as it's much easier. I did do this and have never regretted - armoured cable, lights and multiple sockets.

* I'd now lay a water pipe whilst you're digging for the cable unless all your growing is CPs. I ran auto watering more recently - it saves so much time watering once balanced and timed right.

*Auto vents are a must unless you're around a lot. As much ventilation as you can make as well. Sometimes you can never have enough and often short on cheaper greenhouses.

*Rainwater - you never have enough. I have 600 l storage in total and still ran dry earlier this year. Most of the time that's just about OK but it only takes a tap failure or a need to do a deep clean to compromise your reserves.

*Think about shading in summer and insulation in winter - what you need depends on location, position and what you grow. It can get very hot in there in summer and small greenhouses can be worst.

With all this - buy what you can afford and just ENJOY it!!

 

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Thanks to everyone who has posted its been very useful I think I've got a plan now.

My next problem is what to put into the green house!!

But that's a nicer problem to have!!

Robert

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Has anyone else found any difference between wooden and aluminium greenhouses when growing CPs?

I had better growth with wooden, the atmosphere seemed more conducive to growth - warmer and more humid, without ever getting too hot, even though they are both the same size and have the same number of vents etc. Might just be me though.

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I prefer wooden, both for CPs which need higher humidity and for cacti/succulents which don't.  Don't know why exactly but I feel the wooden frame allows the greenhouse to breathe. Also they're easier to insulate as you can just stick push pins into the frame or screws if heavier fixings are required.

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