Depending on the location and use, there are different designs of greenhouses. They can be divided into free-standing greenhouses, leaning greenhouses, and polytunnels. In this article, we read about How to build a greenhouse?
The classic variant is the free-standing greenhouse. This group includes, for example, the gable roof greenhouse. It has a rectangular floor plan, vertical walls, and – as the name suggests – a gable roof. The so-called earth house is another variant. It is sunk into the ground, making the structure lower. The earth house is often used for the cultivation of small plants such as cacti. When purchasing, however, you should take into account the time-consuming earthworks. It is also not the ideal choice for regions with high groundwater levels.
Dutch Light House
Greenhouses with sloping sidewalls are called Dutch Light Houses. This construction method has the advantage that enough light can enter through the sloping ceilings even in winter. In relation to the floor space, however, this house offers less usable space.
Leaning greenhouses are halved greenhouses that are attached to a building wall. The advantages are the low purchase price and the energy savings because the wall stores the heat well. There are also small balcony greenhouses, which are similar in shape to the narrow leaning greenhouse and can be placed on the balcony or terrace.
Greenhouses in the style of Victorian orangeries are first and foremost an elegant eye-catcher, which is why clear glass is preferred. They are also great to use as a sheltered seat between sensitive potted plants
Foil tunnels protect the plants from light frosts and therefore enable the cultivation time to be extended. When the sun is shining, the air under the film heats up, so that the temperatures in the tunnel are a few degrees above the outside temperatures. The seed can therefore take place a little earlier than in the wild. The tunnel also offers protection from moisture, which prevents the spread of plant diseases. Foil tunnels are more or less mobile depending on their size and type – they can therefore be set up where they are needed. However, heating a foil tunnel or greenhouse does not make sense, as the energy losses are very high due to the thin foil.
Cost of a greenhouse
What a greenhouse cost depends on the size, the material (wooden or aluminum frame, foil, glass, or plastic panes), and the equipment. There are small foil greenhouses with a size of six square meters from 100 euros, for a more stable greenhouse with an aluminum frame and glass or double-wall sheets of the same size you should calculate with 400 to 500 euros. Anyone dreaming of a Victorian-style greenhouse or of extras such as a brick base will quickly end up with several thousand euros. Depending on the provider, the purchase prices are even in the mid-five-digit range, but then you also get a luxury class greenhouse that goes far beyond the demands of a normal hobby gardener.
The location for the greenhouse
Since a greenhouse has to offer the plants optimum light and warmth, the location should be sunny and sheltered from the wind. Avoid a place under trees, near high hedges or walls. It is optimal to align the greenhouse with the ridge in an east-west direction. However, this is not a must, because the incidence of light is still sufficient even in the north-south direction.
If possible, consider building your greenhouse near your home. So you don’t need long supply lines for water and electricity. Such a location also offers the possibility of harvesting a few fresh tomatoes quickly before cooking.
Build your own greenhouse
The specialist trade offers greenhouses in a wide variety of sizes and designs as pre-assembled kits. The setting up of such a greenhouse is much easier and usually cheaper than a greenhouse completely build its own to build a greenhouse. The manufacturers usually provide detailed building instructions for their models, some of which are also available as videos on the Internet. In the case of larger, high-priced models, on-site assembly by a specialist company is usually also possible.
Regardless of whether it is a kit or completely self-made: For the stability and stability of larger greenhouses, an 80-centimeter deep strip foundation made of concrete and a flat base frame is essential. Make sure that the frame profile is good everywhere on the foundation rests. In the case of heavy greenhouses, in particular, an inadequate foundation can create tension in the glazing and lead to cracks. In addition, a badly aligned base frame makes further construction difficult because the profiles then no longer fit together properly.
Greenhouses with plinth walls are very popular in England
Sometimes a low brick wall is built on top of the foundation. This is useful to compensate for unevenness on the foundation surface and to raise the entire construction a little. Tip: You can also extend the base walls into raised beds with appropriately laid-out foundations.
So that the ground heat does not escape in the cold season. You should insulate the foundation and – in the case of raised beds. Also the base wall of your greenhouse. On the inside with six to eight centimeters thick Styrodur panels. This is particularly useful if you want to heat your greenhouse in winter.
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