Greenhouses: What To Do, What Not To Do
Depending on the amount of flowers and plants you are looking to plant, a greenhouse may be a good addition to your landscape! Especially if you are planting a LOT of items.
It is often argued that the addition of a greenhouse in a small garden is a distraction and should not be added. The paint color can be changed, but the harsh lines and glass panes cannot be. However, these structures are very useful for growing plants in bulk, allowing the gardener to better care and enjoy their plants. A greenhouse also allows you to have living plants for a longer growing season.
If you do desire to specialize in the growing of a specific plant or flower, a greenhouse becomes a necessity. Yet, in a greenhouse, these blooms will not be a notable part of your garden picture. The question then becomes if you are willing it have a structure take up space in your garden. If you choose to build a greenhouse, here are some basic rules to follow:
- If possible, such as if the aspect is suitable, locate the greenhouse against one of the house walls, where it will merge into the main structure, and thus lose some of its identity.
- If that is not possible, place it where you would be able to screen it from view, so that it does not become a conspicuous object in the vista as seen from the house.
- Select a simple and unpretentious design, preferably a "lean-to" or "three-quarter-span" pattern, and put it against a boundary fence or wall. These patterns are infinitely preferable to the high-pitched, ridge-roofed, doll's house pavilions designed to evoke the admiration of the uninitiated.
- Paint the outside woodwork a pleasant shade of green, not grass color nor eau-de-nil, but something in between.
- By observing these hints you may succeed in taking the sting out of the “glass box” The gardeners who paint their greenhouses white, picked out with lines of peacock blue, hardly realize the crime they commit. They are blinded to the inconsistencies by the glory of the structure itself, and do not think of it as an element in the picture. For the same reason they give it a place of honor in the center of the garden's width, and contrive that all roads shall lead to it.
- The humble garden frame is another matter. It sits snugly on the ground, and does not take on airs. No one can deny its usefulness and its place is in the vegetable plot. If, in spite of all this, you decide to invest some part of your capital in "glass," then you should beware of the cheap, jerry-built, stock houses which are occasionally offered to a confiding public. They are not all bad, but they all have the same family likeness on paper, and the inexperienced buyer is tempted to buy the largest he can get for the sum he is prepared to spend, or the cheapest for a given size.
A greenhouse is a skeleton of a structure, and can lead to weed growth. If you choose to frame it in wood of poor quality, it can quickly become subject to decay. Often the joints and other parts can become warped, and move out of the shape intended. After a structure becomes leaky, it is hard to ever repair.
Therefore, it is best to not have a greenhouse if it is to be built cheaply. Often the best quality is going to cost much more money, and it is also best to find a company with a good reputation. A conservatory is a term that applies to a greenhouse that is attached to a home. This type of greenhouse is advantageous over other greenhouses as it will get heat from the home, protecting the plants in the winter.
This type of gardening is best done with taste and kept in proper proportion. These structures should not be placed on the north side of a home, as the sun is lacking in this position. This location would only be good for ferns. Some conservatories are ornate, full of colored glass and trinkets, but it is best, when highlighting the plants is the goal, to keep a simple structure with clear glass.
A conservatory with much decoration and colored glass is distracting. It is best, if privacy is desired, to have translucent glass, ground glass, white prismatic glass, or even lead glass. The floor should be tiled, with a slope to a gutter for excess water to be removed. Often a heating system is necessary if the goal is to maintain plants year round.