Thinking of installing a garden greenhouse to protect your plants from the cold? What if you made it yourself? Today there are many garden greenhouses in kit form, easy to assemble and customize.
How to begin
Choosing the right location will be top priority for your garden greenhouse. Find a clear, sunny spot where the ground is completely flat and the earth perfectly compacted. In most areas, face the gable with the door to the south, and the two long sides to the east and west, respectively. In less sunny or very windy regions, install one of the long sides to the south, the short sides then facing east and west for better resistance to prevailing winds. Finally, to be well anchored to the ground, your greenhouse must have solid foundations: raised on a masonry wall, it will be even more solid.
1. Start with the foundation trench: dig it 80 cm deep and 15 to 20 cm wide. At this depth, the ground does not freeze, so there is no risk that the foundation of the greenhouse will lift due to frost. For the lengths of the trench, refer to the lengths of the garden greenhouse you purchased.
2. Prepare concrete (fairly liquid) in a concrete mixer, placing it not far from the trench. If you do not have one, you can rent one or have it loaned to you (you can also have the concrete delivered by a professional). Pour the concrete directly from the cement mixer into the trench using a large diameter plastic tube that will extend the outlet chute. Place a ruler flat across the trench to verify that it is filled to the brim: this will ensure that the concrete foundation is plumb.
3. Once the concrete has hardened, assemble the wall which will act as a plinth. Bricks, like here, or stones are perfect materials. The base must be adjusted to the dimensions of the chosen greenhouse, straight and plumb (the base shown here is about 80 cm high). Work with precision, using a spirit level and an alignment cord, and remember to raise your mortar on the joint of the previously laid brick.
4. Install a wooden frame at the location of the future door. Once the wall is mounted, polish the finish of your joints between the bricks.
5. The garden greenhouse is supplied by the manufacturer as a self-assembly kit. Various elements are already pre-assembled, in particular the pinions. Screw all of the frame elements of your garden greenhouse to all four walls, starting with one of the gables. A sealing strip between the frame and the brick plinth prevents chemical reactions between the mortar and the metal.
6. For steps 6 through 8, follow the manufacturer's directions closely. First, fix the ridge pieces one after the other.
7. Then install the glazing in the guides provided for this purpose - if necessary use dry soap as lubricant. Finally, install the gutters for the evacuation of rainwater.
8. To place plants and seedlings, do not hesitate to attach shelves to the plinth.
Click HERE to see Best Greenhouse kits for 2021.
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