How Does A Greenhouse Work?

Since the Roman times we’ve been using controlled areas to grow vegetables and plants.

Greenhouses traditionally are structures with glass walls and a glass roof, and are designed to stay warm inside even during cold winter months.

Light enters through the glass and turns the sunlight into heat, which then fills the interior of the greenhouse. Heat has a different wavelength to light and becomes trapped inside your greenhouse. Whilst light transfers quickly through glass, heat on the other hand escapes slowly through glass.

The heat then helps your plants to photosynthesise, prompting growth. Combined with regular watering your plants and vegetables will be given the best chance to grow and develop produce.

During the past decade some forms of plastic have replaced the need for glass, providing a safer glazing option whilst still retaining the properties of a traditional glass greenhouse.

Can A Greenhouse Be Used In The Shade?

We do not recommend installing a greenhouse in a shaded area of your garden. The reason for this is a limited amount of light will enter the building and it’ll take a long time to warm up the interior of the structure. This will result in far less heat being generated.

Without a constant amount of sunshine during the day unfortunately the benefits of a greenhouse would be lost.

How Do Greenhouses Stay Warm Overnight?

Without sunlight, overtime heat will escape your greenhouse and cause the temperature to drop, in particular during colder weather. To ensure your greenhouse stays warm you can look at the following options:

  • High-Density Materials: If you have a greenhouse which includes elements of high density materials, such as Stone or Bricks, these gradually heat up during the day and will retain a lot of said energy. This would then slowly be released during the evening. We recommend having a brick floor as a floor in your greenhouse to make the most of this.
  • Artificial Heat:  Another alternative should you wish to keep your greenhouse warm throughout the evenings is by purchasing artificial heat sources, such as space heaters. Ensure you choose one which is suitable for a greenhouse.

How Do You Keep A Greenhouse Cool?

Lots of heat is great for photosynthesis, however too much will cause your plants to burn up. There are a number of ways to keep your growing area cool, including the following:

  • Ventilation: A number of greenhouses include roof vents or louvered panels. This allows for air to circulate through and will help to cool the air within your greenhouse. Automatic Vent Openers are seen as a great addition to a greenhouse as these will open when the temperature is particularly high. Don’t forget, opening your door to the structure is also a great way to help with airflow.
  • Watering Surfaces: Another top tip to reduce the temperature within your greenhouse is to spray water over hard surfaces, such as your internal staging and flooring. The water will then evaporate raising the moisture level. We recommend trying not to splash any plants during the hottest parts of the day, as this could scold/burn your plants.
  • Shading: Many retailers provide shading, in the form of blinds or mesh, to help reduce the amount of light entering the greenhouse. This is turn creates less heat. It is a fine balance however, as too much shading will cause your greenhouse to not warm up enough to be of benefit to your items.

It is always worth investing in a thermometer for your building so that you can keep an eye on the internal temperature of the greenhouse. The ideal temperature should be around 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

What Is The Best Greenhouse To Buy?

Traditionally greenhouses use to be commonly seen made from wood, however these can be expensive and require regular treatment. The current favoured material is Aluminium, as this is a much cheaper, stronger and lighter weight material and requires no maintenance.

Apex roofed, freestanding greenhouses are the most popular choice for gardeners. These are available in a vast array of sizes and are perfect for those who have large enough gardens to accommodate them.

For those with a smaller garden, or those that don’t want a larger growing area then lean-to greenhouses are an ever increasing popular way of growing your own. These styles don’t have a back panel and rely upon a back brick wall for support. The bricks will retain heat throughout the day to keep your greenhouse warm during the night. Wall gardens are similar, but are smaller in shape.

There is a growing market for those individuals who live in flats and shared accommodation due to the current climate concerns and the increasing number of people wanting to grow their own food. Due to this there is a wide range of small/mini greenhouse stores that fit perfectly onto a patio or balcony.

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