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greenhouse to do on my own  RSS feed

 
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Hello everyone. I have got a big garden, but I wanted to create a place in it where I can grow some plants like vegetables and fruits. However, prices of greenhouses are really high for me, so I thought that good idea would be to do it on my own. I don't want a big greenhouse, but one that will be sufficient for few plants. What should I remember about while building such greenhouse? What about irrigation system?
 
pollinator
Posts: 1936
Location: Toronto, Ontario
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If you are building a small greenhouse, it would make it easier than large projects to source your building materials from the waste/salvage streams.

Old windows can be found easily enough on craigslist or kijiji, or at transfer stations. Wooden, single-pane windows can be pieced together and screwed right on to a lumber frame, or multiple-paned windows, usually discarded because the gas seal breaks, can be stripped of their panes, which can be framed and used similarly.

One of the most important things to remember during your greenhouse build is location. You can add shade cloth and added ventilation, if you need to. Situate your greenhouse where it will get the most sun.

As to irrigation, that's almost a separate issue, except that if you wish to collect rainwater from your greenhouse roof, you have to design with that in mind, thinking about sloped areas as catchment and adding gutters and a barrel. I really like gravity-driven irrigation. It lets you water with very little energy, or even attention, should the system be set up with drip hoses or microirrigation. All that need happen is for the water reservoir to be elevated above the watering level, and for a solar-powered valve timer with a battery backup to be employed to open and close the valve to the irrigation lines at set times.

Also, worry-free systems usually include temperature-activated vent openers and closers to ensure it doesn't get too hot.

We would love some pictures, if you're willing. But let us know how it goes, and good luck.

-CK
 
pioneer
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Posts: 1965
Location: USDA Zone 8a
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This thread has some good idea:

https://permies.com/t/84260/Cheapest-green-house-builds-Gardening

I especially like this idea:

Kim Goodwin wrote: The most affordable greenhouse designs I've seen online (starting around $150), like for a substantial greenhouse not a tiny one, are using cattle panels.  Examples below.  The first time I saw this was a guy who was building a combo quail run/greenhouse for starting plants.  So not a growhouse, because the quail took up the ground space.  But then he had tables inside for the starts, and they provided shady areas for the quail, too.  In this case, he built a very long greenhouse, because quail are rather easily startled, and could injure themselves if cornered, like when one walks in to water the starts.  



This is another concept:

Brett Pritchard wrote:Secondhand round trampolines are often free and ones of around 3.2 metre diameter make great green houses. The ones with the safety netting included are the best as the trampoline safety netting can be used for shadecloth. Pull the trampoline apart then form into two semi-circles. Slip straight lengths of pipe from the safety net frame into the sockets on the semi circles that the legs used to push into. You now have the frame constructed, and can screw a few self tappers in to hold the pipe together. Cut the safety net so it is a rectangle then stretch that over the frame and cable tie into place. You may have to get a bit of extra shadecloth for the ends. Cut the trampoline mat up and use that for weed mat. I've built both green houses and trellising using old trampolines and it is generally cheaper and stronger than similar looking structures built using polypipe.

 
pollinator
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The first thing in building a small simple greenhouse is that the roof and north wall can be solid frame construction and insulated. Summer sun entering through the roof just overheats the greenhouse. winter sun being lower in the sky will penetrate all the way to the back wall if  the structure is not too deep south to north.  My greenhouse is made with six sets of sliding glass doors. which gives me six panels on the south side and three on each end. With the roof sloped to the north a gutter can collect the rain and fill a row of barrels inside the north wall for irrigation and heat heat storage. My glass is vertical and can be insulated at night in the winter with role down shades of old carpet.
 
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