Where to put your green­house

Gardeners' World - - Greenhouse Growing -

Sit­ing the green­house is im­por­tant. Don’t put it un­der trees where it will be shaded and sub­ject to con­stant leaf fall in au­tumn. Place it out in the open, but shel­tered from strong winds and in good light, and where you don’t mind look­ing at it. Ac­cess needs to be easy – an all-weather path will not only be prac­ti­cal but will also make for a good tem­per in foul weather. In terms of ori­en­ta­tion, the the­ory goes that an east-west ori­en­ta­tion ex­tends light lev­els in win­ter, while north-south pro­vides more even sun­light for sum­mer crops. As long as the green­house is in good light, I don’t think it mat­ters a jot whether it runs north-south or east-west. Place it where you find it ar­chi­tec­turally pleas­ing. Buy as large a green­house as you can af­ford and ac­com­mo­date. How­ever huge it may seem at first, you will al­ways fill it. It is a strange twist of Parkin­son’s Law – the num­ber of plants you want to grow in­creases to match the amount of green­house space on of­fer. A 6ft x 8ft green­house should be an ab­so­lute min­i­mum, but 10ft x 12ft is ideal. The choice of ma­te­rial is up to you, from tim­ber (west­ern red cedar is light­weight, durable and needs rel­a­tively lit­tle treat­ment), alu­minium al­loy or pow­der-coated al­loy (which is what I have), which looks painted but is tremen­dously durable and needs no treat­ment at all other than wash­ing down each year with a pres­sure hose. A good green­house is ex­pen­sive, but you will only need to buy it once.

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