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Here’s a quick checklist to help you choose the best greenhouse for you. If you work through this list from top to bottom you should be able to understand which kind of greenhouse will be ideal for your needs.
The first thing to decide is what size greenhouse you need. Obviously this is largely dictated by the area in your garden or allotment where you plan to site your greenhouse. It’s always best to go up a size if you can. For instance if you were planning on buying a 6ft x 6ft greenhouse then go for a 6x8 as you’ll definitely find the extra growing area very useful.
The next decision to make is whether to buy an aluminium greenhouse or one with a wooden frame. Aluminium is the most popular today as it is maintenance free and relatively inexpensive. Wooden greenhouses however, tend to cost more and over the years will require a bit of love and care.
It has to be said that whilst most aluminium greenhouses will suffer in very extreme windy conditions, especially if they’re in a very windy, unsheltered position. Wooden greenhouses however, are particularly hardy in windy coastal or elevated areas and due to their weight they thrive in these inhospitable conditions.
If you have children or dogs running about the garden you really need to consider their safety very seriously. Obviously where you choose to site your greenhouse is important to keep it away from areas where your kids play but also accidents can and do happen so mitigating risks is sensible.
We can offer a huge help in avoiding injury by choosing either toughened safety glass or polycarbonate glazing. Toughened safety glass is excellent for gardens in windy positions as it’s nice and heavy but also should it break it smashes down into tiny glass pebbles that will scratch you at the very worst.
Polycarbonate glazing is completely shatterproof and therefore the safest option for the family garden as kids can run into it full pelt without fear of injury ! The only downside to polycarbonate glazing is it’s light weight meaning that it can be vulnerable to blowing out in very windy weather conditions.
Garden with no children - Standard greenhouse 3mm Horticultural glass will suffice in this situation. It’s the cheapest glazing option and cheap to replace should it break. It does break into shards so it’s not recommended for family gardens.
Garden with kids - Always go for polycarbonate or toughened safety glass if you have a family garden with children racing about!
Windy Position - Go for toughened safety glass as it’s a full length pane of glass meaning it’s rigid and heavy and less likely to affected by wind. Also try to go for a greenhouse with glazing or bar capping where the glass is held in the frame with proper glazing bar rather than wire clips.
Once you’ve chosen your greenhouse it’s very sensible to consider ventilation. Does the greenhouse have enough roof vents to let hot air escape? One of the most useful things you can invest in though is a louvre window vent to let in cool air to moderate the temperature inside your greenhouse during warm weather.