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For many of us, the first foray into greenhouse gardening can be a daunting one. Not only do you have to decide what style of greenhouse you should buy, where it should be positioned in your garden and what size it should be, but once it has been erected you then need to know how and what you should grow! As a first time gardener this can be a little overwhelming, but worry not, this blog will give you a few hints and tips to help get you started.
What to Grow
One of the main benefits to owning a greenhouse is being able to grow vegetables and plants all year round, regardless of the season or the weather. Greenhouses are incredibly popular for vegetable growing, and whilst you can try your hand at anything, these veg may be an easier starting point than others:
If you are keener on growing plants, then lean to greenhouses provide the optimal environment to help seedlings germinate before sowing them in your garden.
Whilst greenhouses are fantastic sources of natural light, during the autumn and winter, when the days are considerably shorter, you may find that your plants will start to suffer. Installing supplementary lighting systems, such as florescent lamp strips or LED grown lights, will help keep your greenhouse functioning all year round.
As with lighting, greenhouses can also struggle to maintain a comfortable heat in the winter, with temperatures in the building plummeting dramatically. Therefore, it may be advisable to invest in an electric heater. These are relatively cheap, small and easy to install. For a small greenhouse, a 120-volt heater is perfect, but larger greenhouses will probably need a 240+ volt heater.
The summer can also bring with it some issues, as a greenhouse can become too hot for the plants to be able to thrive properly. Investing in a thermometer will allow you to constantly gauge the temperature in the greenhouse. If it gets too hot, simply opening the door can help cool down the space. However, if the heat becomes too difficult to deal with you may want to purchase some air coolers.
It is easy to get over-excited at the prospect of being able to grow your own plants, and start cramming in as many as you possibly can. However, plants really need space. They should not be touching each other as this will limit their ability to grow, as well as possibly causing disease to spread throughout your crops.
Greenhouses need a constant supply of fresh air to help keep the plants healthy, allowing them to photosynthesize using the carbon dioxide in the fresh air. Pollination is also greatly increased with clean, fresh circulated air, and the risk of pest infestations decreased.
Your greenhouse should be installed with wall and roof vents, and during the summer these need to be kept open to allow hot air to escape and cool air to be pulled through. During the winter you won’t be able to have your vents open as much, so having an oscillating fan running can help keep air circulating continuously.
Whilst greenhouse gardening may initially seem like hard work, don’t forget there are many benefits to greenhouse growing, from saving you money on your shopping bills to all-year-round gardening, and not to mention the satisfaction one gets when you and your family tuck into a dinner created from ingredients you have grown yourself! To take a look at our vast range of greenhouses, call one of our fantastic customer services team today on 0800 999 0123
Posted by Matt Jordan