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The Complete Guide To

Building Your Own Greenhouse

By Max Clarke

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

Page 2 of 123

Please Read This First

This Electronic book is Copyright © 2007 eBookwholesaler. All

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Disclaimer

The advice contained in this material might not be suitable for

everyone. The author provided the information only as a broad

overview by a lay person about an important subject. The

author used information from sources believed to be reliable

and from his own personal experience, but he neither implies

nor intends any guarantee of accuracy. The results you obtain

will depend largely on your own efforts and other factors

beyond the knowledge and control of the author, publisher

and distributors. No particular result or outcome is promised

or guaranteed in any way. New theories and practices are

constantly being developed in this area.

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

Page 3 of 123

The author, publisher and distributors never give legal,

accounting, medical or any other type of professional advice.

The reader must always seek those services from competent

professionals that can apply the latest technical information

and review their own particular circumstances.

The author, publisher and distributors particularly disclaim any

liability, loss, or risk taken by individuals who directly or

indirectly act on the information contained herein. All readers

must accept full responsibility for their use of this material.

All pictures used in this book are for illustrative purposes only.

No endorsement of the content by any person in the photos is

implied, nor should it be assumed.

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

Page 4 of 123

About the Author

Max Clarke has been a keen amateur gardener for several

years.

He loves building things to help him with his hobby and has

actually made several small greenhouses.

He is grateful to his friends, both amateur gardeners and

commercial growers that have shared some of their

experiences and knowledge to help make his gardening and

his book better.

He says that everyone should invest some time to create and

maintain their own garden even if they only have a small area

available.

A small garden is within almost everyone’s budget and there

are many rewards.

You will only really understand what he means when you start

eating fresh, flavorful and inexpensive fruit and vegetables

that you grew yourself.

But Max also gets great joy by sharing the produce and

flowers that he grows and the knowledge from his years of

experience as a gardener with his friends, family and, now,

with the readers of his first book.

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

Page 5 of 123

Table of Contents

Please Read This First ........................................................................ 2

Disclaimer ................................................................................................................ 2

About the Author ................................................................................. 4

Table of Contents ................................................................................ 5

1. What is a Greenhouse?................................................................... 8

2. Uses of a Greenhouse................................................................... 12

Innovative Uses of Old Greenhouses Include: .............................................. 13

3. Greenhouse Types and Styles ..................................................... 14

Greenhouses for Your Area.............................................................. 20

How to Choose a Greenhouse ......................................................... 21

Placement of Your Greenhouse........................................................................... 21

Choice of Greenhouse.......................................................................................... 22

Framing Materials ................................................................................................. 24

5. Buying a Greenhouse ................................................................... 26

Greenhouse Interiors ....................................................................................... 27

Ten Steps to Building a Greenhouse............................................... 31

Materials for Building Your Greenhouse:........................................................... 32

Steps for Building Your Greenhouse.................................................................. 33

Do You Need a Customized Greenhouse?...................................... 35

Building Your Own Greenhouse ...................................................... 36

Important Factors .............................................................................. 40

Planning a Greenhouse Business.................................................... 41

Essential Steps in Planning Your Greenhouse Business.............. 43

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

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Which Type of Greenhouse?............................................................ 47

Greenhouse Accessories ..................................................................................... 47

Top Greenhouse Kits ........................................................................ 49

Planning Your Greenhouse Location .............................................. 52

The Best Frame for Your Greenhouse............................................. 56

Choose the Covering for Your Greenhouse.................................... 59

Footings, Flooring and Foundations ............................................... 62

The Footings of Your Greenhouse ...................................................................... 63

Flooring of Your Greenhouse .............................................................................. 64

Selecting the Right Lights ................................................................ 66

Light Requirements .............................................................................................. 66

Types of Lights...................................................................................................... 67

Cooling, Ventilation and Your Greenhouse .................................... 70

Cooling and Ventilation of Greenhouses by Plants .......................................... 70

Cooling and Ventilation by Blocking Sunlight ................................................... 72

Ventilation Equipment .......................................................................................... 72

Automated Cooling and Ventilation Techniques ............................................... 75

Understanding Heating Methods, Systems, Sources, and

Distribution ........................................................................................ 77

Heating Systems and Methods ............................................................................ 77

Fuel Sources for Heating Systems...................................................................... 80

Popular Fuels: ................................................................................................... 80

Heat Distribution inside Greenhouse.................................................................. 81

Calculating Energy Requirements for Heating Systems................ 84

Energy Requirements for Your Heating System................................................ 85

Watering Systems and Insulation Techniques ............................... 88

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

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Greenhouse Watering Systems ........................................................................... 88

Insulation Techniques in Greenhouses.............................................................. 90

Basic Greenhouse Care .................................................................... 93

Essential Accessories and Equipments for Maintenance ................................ 93

Greenhouse Maintenance Checklist ................................................ 97

Maintenance Checklist for Your Greenhouse .................................................... 98

Getting the Most from Your Cooling and Ventilation Systems ... 101

Maintaining the Heating Systems .................................................. 105

Tips for Maintenance of Heating Systems........................................................ 105

Control Greenhouse Pests and Diseases ..................................... 108

Cleaning Materials and Tools for a Small Greenhouse .............................. 108

Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Greenhouse................................................... 109

Greenhouse Accessories Guide .................................................... 112

Know Your Equipment and Supplies............................................. 116

Essential Greenhouse Supplies .................................................................... 116

Cold Frames and Hotbeds .............................................................. 119

Cold Frames......................................................................................................... 119

Hotbeds ................................................................................................................ 121

Facts about Famous Greenhouses................................................ 122

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

Page 8 of 123

Part-I: Introduction

1. What is a Greenhouse?

A greenhouse is a small house-shaped structure made of

glass or plastic. It is designed to maintain optimum

temperature and moisture inside it to help grow a wider

variety of plants than the local climate will normally support

and to protect them from any extreme weather.

Certain gases in the atmosphere, like carbon dioxide, water

vapor, methane and nitrous oxide do not allow heat to escape

back into the atmosphere. This quality makes these gases

popular in commercial greenhouses.

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Greenhouse with Geraniums (Pelargonium sp)

All greenhouses function on the same principle; they store

heat from the sun. The glass or plastic panels of greenhouse

reduce the amount of heat escaping while allowing light to

penetrate. This increases the temperature within the

greenhouse and keeps your plants warmer in winter.

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Lettuce seedlings grown in a greenhouse before planting

Greenhouses range from a small structure for keeping in your

terrace garden to as big as a city building. Their glass panels

are grouped according to their transmission rate. The energy

trapped within greenhouses heats up both soil and plants.

They prevent or reduce infrared radiation, convection of gases

and arrest electromagnetic radiation too.

Greenhouses are used for growing vegetables, fruits, flowers,

and even crops like tobacco. You can grow flowers and

vegetables in late winter in greenhouses, then transplant them

outside in early spring.

These houses have meant an increase in artificial pollination

although using bees is preferred when practical.

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You have to maintain specific levels of humidity and heat

within your greenhouses and control any potential influx of

pests and associated diseases.

You can irrigate the plants in greenhouses if the need arises.

The increased temperature is essential if you try growing

summer vegetables in winter.

Greenhouses maybe used to protect plants from blizzards and

dust storms too. Such greenhouse cultivation proves useful in

deserts, Arctic wastelands and other land areas with poor

fertility.

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2. Uses of a Greenhouse

A greenhouse helps you grow your plants at regulated

temperatures and humidity levels. It is easier to regulate

temperatures within small greenhouses. Greenhouses are not

necessarily hot houses. They allow the required amount of

heat to be present within so that plants do not suffer from

extreme heat or extreme cold. Having a greenhouse need not

be a luxury. With a little persistence and innovation, you can

have a greenhouse anywhere.

Coriander seedlings in a greenhouse

The Main Uses of a Greenhouse are –

• Helping small and tender plants to grow from seeds

earlier than usual

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

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• Grow plants within indoor environment in winter months

• Helps carry forward garden plants to use as stock in the

next season

• Increases the variety of plants and blooms

• Allows you to experiment with new varieties of flowering

plants and vegetables too

• Helps cultivation of winter vegetables in pots

• Helps maintain a continuous supply of vegetables all

year through

• Helps develop your hobby of growing plants even if

there is a space crunch

Innovative Uses of Old Greenhouses Include:

• Bus-stop for children in a cold winter

• Proves to be a garbage bin without the possibility of

animals or pests creating a nuisance with open garbage

• Useful as a pottery room for children

• Useful as a storehouse for holding skateboards, bikes,

ramps, and other things

• Can be used as a hot water tub for bathing

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

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Part-II: Greenhouse Selection

3. Greenhouse Types and Styles

There are many different styles and types of greenhouses.

Greenhouse with Geraniums

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Some of the more popular are:

A Freestanding Greenhouse: This greenhouse has an

independent structure, not attached to your home. It has

independent sidewalls, end walls and a gable roof. You can

make it in any size, shape and style that you like and that can

get planning permission for.

The amount of sunlight penetrating your greenhouse depends

on various factors in its construction. You could an need extra

heating system if the free-standing greenhouse is completely

separate from a heated building.

This freestyle greenhouse spreads over seventeen to eighteen

feet. It can accommodate two walks, two side benches, and a

center bench.

Business and Commerce Use

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"Building Your Own Greenhouse" by Max Clarke

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An Attached Greenhouse: These greenhouses are connected

directly to your main building. Such greenhouses receive heat

radiated from your home. Additionally, you can arrange for

any necessary heat and light infrastructure from your home

too. Also, be sure to take into consideration any special

building restrictions that exist before constructing an attached

greenhouse.

There are different types of attached greenhouses, including

lean-to, even-span or window-mounted.

Attached, lean-to greenhouses lean against the building.

They are supported because one of the sides is att