The Greenhouse Effect
need not stop just because it's cold and rainy. A greenhouse
will let you plan for the seasons ahead, care for tender
plants, and keep you warm and dry!
Have you been bitten by the gardening bug and are already
beginning to suffer withdrawal symptoms as flowers fade
and the weather becomes increasingly inhospitable? Why
not extend your gardening season with a greenhouse?
Some of the grandest are the impressive Victorian structures
at botanic gardens like Kew
and Glasgow, for example, whilst the geodesic domes
at the Eden Project in Cornwall show just what modern
design and technology can do. It's unlikely that you'll
have room for such structures in your garden (or so
deep a pocket), but you too can have your own miniature
Firstly, decide just what you want from your greenhouse.
Should it be an extension of your home? Will you be
growing exotic plants, or providing winter shelter for
Do you want to propagate
from seed; grow fruit and veg all-year-round; cultivate
flowers for indoor displays? These decisions will determine
whether you'll want to invest in a heater, growing lamps,
watering systems, or not. Even if you don't heat a greenhouse,
you'll be able to extend the growing period of plants
Next, when looking at greenhouses, assess the strength
of the structure, ease of access and the ventilation
provided. Within, you'll want to make it work for you
- just like a kitchen. You may decide to have shelves,
a combination of fixed and movable staging,
and a planting area below.
If you've just taken delivery of a greenhouse - lucky
you - make sure that it's insulated. Many gardeners
use a layer of bubble-wrap plastic to keep the heat
in. Then, get sowing and planting! You'll be able to
take cuttings of half-hardy perennials, pot up spring-flowering
bulbs, sow lettuce, radish and carrots..
And if you don't have the space - or cash - for such
a structure, there are alternatives on a smaller scale,
And, of course, there's always that sunny windowsill.
our Superstore to see its fantastic range of greenhouses
and related products
See also the Helping Hands workshops:
for a greenhouse
the most out of a greenhouse
plants from seeds indoors
reprinted with premission from Greenfingers.com