Everything you need to know to start a hobby greenhouse

Inside hobby greenhouse full of tomato plants

A high-quality hobby greenhouse can provide you with a fun place to relax away from your day-to-day life and give you fruits, vegetables, and decorative plants all year round! Home gardeners typically find an at-home greenhouse to bring great joy, peace, and relaxation into their lives.

In this article, you'll not only learn the purpose of hobby greenhouse installation but learn more about the hobby greenhouse supplies that you can use when creating a greenhouse for your needs. By the time you're done reading, you will feel comfortable building a hobby greenhouse for your home.


What is a Greenhouse?

Transparent glass hobby greenhouse

A greenhouse is a building made of transparent material, usually glass, with regulated climactic conditions that helps grow plants. Hobby greenhouses often come in multiple types with greenhouse supplies and equipment that help them operate smoothly.

Great hobby greenhouse kits let you build one of these structures near your home to give yourself a year-round garden and a warm place to hang out during winter. You may find these items at various hobby stores near you. Often, these shops include professionals who can help you identify what you need.

Hobby greenhouse kits, including Farmtek Greenhouses, vary in size, shape, and implementation. Understanding your options here will help pick out hobby greenhouse kits that may work the best for your needs.


 


 

Greenhouse Options

Transparent greenhouse with potted plants inside

When building hobby greenhouses for your home or choosing hobby greenhouse kits and greenhouse supplies for your needs, you can choose between many types. Each hobby greenhouse design uses various equipment and greenhouse supplies, like heating mats that produce hot air and a controlled environment.

A greenhouse may help maintain surrounding air at multiple temperatures and use items for retaining heat, such as shade cloth and more. When shopping resources for hobby greenhouse kits, you can choose from options like:

  • Lean-To Hobby Greenhouse: A lean-to hobby greenhouse is typically relatively small and usually sits against one or more other buildings. They give you access to a small growing environment with minimal setup and easy access to electricity and water.
  • Ridge and Furrow Hobby Greenhouse: These hobby greenhouses use an A-frame-style structure that protects against rain, snow, and other damaging elements. They leave much room for plants and can work well when connected to multiple hobby greenhouses.
  • Even Span Hobby Greenhouse: Even span hobby greenhouses have sloping roofs and overall designs in many sizes and shapes. Many include supplemental lighting and help with limited space by providing an ideal environment for many plants, including partial sun for starting seeds.
  • Uneven Span Hobby Greenhouse: These hobby greenhouses include two uneven length roofs and are designed to increase sun intake in hilly areas. They work well in areas with many hills and can protect against high winds.

Other hobby greenhouses include pipe metal frame greenhouses with durable and heavy metal materials. You may also install wood frame hobby greenhouses with increased thermal efficiency during cold months and attractive wood designs. Other buyers may build plastic hobby greenhouses with an affordable price line and minimal maintenance needs. Lastly, you may find special offers on warm PVC hobby greenhouses that are easy to set up and maintain over time. The type you prefer will vary based on your needs as a grower.


Greenhouse Size

Side view of white transparent greenhouse

When buying hobby greenhouse kits for your needs, you need to think about efficient space usage. After all, you don't want to build a hobby greenhouse too large or too small for your needs when shopping for resources before building.

Some hobby greenhouses may be as small as four feet by four feet and may help grow a few simple plants. Others may be as large as 20 feet by 20 feet and grow crops yearly.

A good tip is to go with the largest structure that your budget and space demand and then shopping resources that help improve your greenhouse operation. These may include seedling trays, heat mats, garden hose hookups, and large containers for storage.

When shopping supplies for hobby greenhouses, talk to many gardeners who can help you understand what items you may need and seek category deals when shopping for greenhouse equipment.


Interior Design & Use of Space

Potted and hanging plants inside the greenhouse

Hobby greenhouse interiors require plenty of space for all of your plants and walking rows between each row where you can work and care for your plants and seeds.

A hobby greenhouse should have paths 2-4 feet wide between these rows, with room for shelving and storage around the sides. It would help if you also had seed storage options in these areas and potting soil storage bins.

This extra space not only provides better ventilation for your plants but also manages air heat in the summer, helps with humidity management for your soil, keeps your temperature even for every season, and makes gardening in your backyard much easier. You also need a water source for your greenhouse interior, including a hook up for garden hoses that help bring in the water your hobby greenhouse needs.


Location

Transparent greenhouse with grow lights for plants

When building a hobby greenhouse, please place it in the full sun whenever possible. Doing so increases your natural heat in all seasons, including summer, and creates temperatures appropriate for each growing season.

Position your gardening greenhouse, so it's not too far from your home. This location helps by letting you draw upon your home's electrical and water sources, including garden hose hookups and much more.

You can also install these items indoors and use various protecting items, including a greenhouse's glass walls, to protect your garden hose and electrical wires.


Sun

Interior of hobby greenhouse with direct sunlight

Hobby greenhouses need at least six hours of direct sunlight in the cold growing seasons. So here's a pro tip: situate your greenhouse so that its narrower front or back end faces east. Doing so helps improve temperature management and increases heating for your gardening by letting the longer sides get southern UV ray exposure all winter long.

You may want to plant flowering trees or shrubs near your hobby greenhouses to provide shade and keep the heat at bay for summer growing. This helps to keep your gardening air balanced and backyard greenhouses safe for vegetables, seedlings, and other growths.


Wind & Weather

Closer picture of transparent greenhouse with foggy moist

When you shop for greenhouse kits and greenhouse supplies, make sure you pay attention to wind and weather protection. You may buy greenhouses with strong supporting beams, extra-thick glass panels, strong ceiling beams, and heavy glass ceiling tiles that keep your greenhouse strong.

When possible, position greenhouses near supporting structures, such as buildings or even hills and trees. These natural wind blocks will help minimize the danger of wind damage. Some might even shop for and install trees and shrubs in their backyard to improve protection further.

Greenhouses with sloped roofs often do better in cold seasons because the snow and melting ice will flow right off the roof and minimize backyard damage.


Ease & Accessibility

Transparent hobby greenhouse placed on a backyard

Your greenhouse should be accessible to everyone and include things like wheelchair ramps, push-button doors, wider pathways for visitors, and any other accessibility adapters. Add these items if you have any friends or family members who use wheelchairs, canes, or other walking aids. In this way, they can enjoy your growing environment when visiting.

Adding these items also helps in the future as you age by allowing you easier greenhouse access when you need it later in life by making it easier to move through your greenhouse ground and minimizing maintenance difficulties.

Accessible ventilation and watering control options may also help you control these elements for your seedlings and vegetables. Doing so can also ensure you don't rely on other people for help when maintaining your greenhouses and helps you relax and enjoy your indoor growing experience even when fall frosts hit.


Making a Greenhouse Foundation

Three people inside transparent greenhouse

Talk to local building professionals to learn more about creating a greenhouse foundation. You typically fill the foundations with concrete to help make them stronger and more secure. Foundations may fill out at 2-4 feet long and wide, depending on your area and its regulations. You typically need a strong concrete slab that is slightly larger (by a foot square) than your greenhouse to help it fill out the slab carefully.


Securing Your Greenhouse

Two transparent hobby greenhouses side by side

Always talk to your local officials to learn more about what size structures you can build on your property. Secure your building contract, and fill out any important information it requires.

This contract can include things like material costs, uncertain building costs, and more, with things like local laws that may affect your greenhouse's implementation.


Flooring Options

Wooden interiors of greenhouse with aligned potted plants

Common flooring options include bark mulch, bare ground, and pea gravel. Pea gravel is often much smoother, minimizes pest invasion, and reflects UV light during cold seasons.


Shelves

Plant nursery inside transparent greenhouse

Integrate shelves throughout your facility, including places for potting, cutting, and seeding. Include containers and hooks where you can hang important tools.


Climate Control

Gardening tools inside transparent greenhouse

Climate control can include both heating and cooling equipment. Include fans that help minimize excessive air moisture and minimize mold and mildew growth.


Keeping a Greenhouse Cool

Greenhouse interior with various plants

Use fans, evaporative systems, damping (misting), and portable air conditioners during the summer. Use air conditioners sparingly and only when no other system provides the cooling help you need.


Greenhouse Must-Haves

When building a greenhouse in the contiguous United States, you need to provide many things to protect your greenhouse. The country is often relatively cool in the fall and hot in the summer, and those cold and hot days can affect how well you grow your plants and vegetables.

Here are a few things that your greenhouse will need, though some exclusions apply depending on your growing area and where you live in the United States.


Ventilation

Inside the greenhouse with direct sunlight for plants

Proper ventilation is something you can't skimp on when installing a greenhouse or multiple greenhouses in your backyard. No exclusions apply here: every growing room needs some fans and proper air management. Without this air protection, fungus, mold, pests, and various other problems may severely affect your growth.

Two oscillating floor fans can help keep your air moving and avoid stale and humid atmospheres that may affect plant quality. You may also buy greenhouse kits and greenhouse supplies with automatic ventilation devices that open panels through your greenhouses as temperatures rise, keeping your greenhouse safe.


Temperature Monitor

Temperature monitor device hanged on the wall

The background temperature of your greenhouse structures must be appropriate for the season to help your seeds and keep your ventilation effective by adjusting your air control as temperatures change.

A temperature monitor helps by letting you gauge just how warm your greenhouse gets, including an alarm that syncs to your phone and alerts you when temperatures are too high for your garden. You can also hook this alarm to your water source or garden hose, activating them automatically to help cool your growths when needed.

Most gardeners can adjust their water source to create a misting effect or shop for misting items you can install on your water source.


Heat

Heat setter device planted on the wall

If your plant's leaves droop or fall off, that's a sign your heat isn't appropriate. Too much heat may cause wilting in your plant leaves or even cause your glass to warp near heating sources. Typically, a great greenhouse has a heat control tool that automatically manages your heat levels and may warn you when the heat is too high.

For most plant types, 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit should be an appropriate temperature for most items grown indoors. These temperatures are very welcoming to many pests, so ensure you have pest management tools on the ground in your greenhouse, including traps and sprays.


Electricity

Front and interior lights of transparent greenhouse

When you shop for greenhouse supplies and greenhouse kits, you need to consider their electrical needs, especially when finding category deals on qualifying orders from garden suppliers. After all, most of these items, such as ventilation fans and automatic misting systems, need electricity to operate, or else they'll leave your garden in pretty rough shape.

Most gardeners will wire their greenhouse with outlets, depending on local statutes. While connecting your greenhouses with extension cords from your home is possible, this option greatly increases your electric bills. You can offset these bills by installing solar panels and batteries specifically for your greenhouse. The electrical needs will be less demanding than your home, and solar electricity should provide the help you need.


Shade Cloth

An aisle of green plants inside the greenhouse shaded with cloth

Shade cloth can go over the glass in your greenhouse and help manage the temperature within your indoor garden and its growing atmosphere. Remember: too much light and heat can damage your garden by drying out their soil or even causing a sunburn!

Shade cloth helps by keeping excessive UV lights out of the air around your garden and minimizing any unnecessary damage to your garden. These cloths should easily fit on most greenhouse structures, including your glass walls, and can be useful when ventilation isn't enough to keep your greenhouse temperature and heat at safe levels.


Greenhouse Don'ts

Potted plants on the shelves of hobby greenhouse

Keeping greenhouses safe includes avoiding problematic behaviors that may cause problems. Understanding these steps should help keep your plants safe and minimize the risk of damage. The overall message to consider here can be broken down into two words: be careful.


Take Precautions

Hanging and potted green plants arranged inside the greenhouse

Greenhouses typically work well for specific plant types and can be adjusted to suit any plant needs. As a result, you must be careful when taking in other people's growths because they may not take the same care you do to keep them safe. In other words, they may bring in vermin and diseases that spread heavily throughout your greenhouses and cause serious problems.

Always scrutinize each new plant, even the ones you buy, use new pot and soil materials, and spray them with a simple and safe solution. This solution includes one-part bleach to nine-part water. Taking this step helps avoid spreading diseases by killing bacteria, fungus, vermin, and other problems that may spread throughout your plants otherwise.


A Few More Sage Greenhouse Tips

Find a Compost Source: Growing in a greenhouse may require high-quality compost that helps your plants thrive. You may use tools like Lomi to break down various food and waste items and create nutrient-rich dirt that works well for your needs.

 

Lomi by Pela

Lomi

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Lomi allows you to turn food waste into plant-ready nutrients in under 24 hours. Boost your plants while reducing your waste.


 

Use Environmentally Safe Pest Traps: When insects and other vermin invade your greenhouses, don't buy dangerous adhesive traps. Instead, put out index cards covered with Vaseline. These will trap dangerous insects and let good ones, like ladybugs and spiders, escape.

Plan for Climate Changes: Too many greenhouse owners don't prepare for the impact of environmental changes. You need supplemental lights to help when clouds cover the sun or when cold seasons roll around, and your plants need more sun.

Keep Detailed Records: During your first growing year, keep detailed records of any climate changes within your greenhouse and how they affect your plants. Know that your first year will be a learning experience before giving up after a bad initial experience.


Final Thoughts

This article is essential for anybody interested in a new hobby, who wants to build a greenhouse on their own, or who has noticed any qualifying orders for gardening goods in nearby garden shops. These tips may help you get started on the path towards fun and rewarding new building.

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