When you have a greenhouse, it’ll allow you to grow a variety of plants. For many homeowners and gardeners, a greenhouse is a lovely addition that serves as a haven for tender plants and seasonal types.
A greenhouse is a building where you can grow plants. The structure can vary from a small model or an expansive one that houses hundreds of plants. The material for a greenhouse is usually plastic or glass to allow sunlight to pass through. Its chief purpose is to increase growth and fruit production and even allow you to cultivate plants that do not normally thrive in the climate in your area.
As a structure that braves the changing weather elements, a greenhouse requires maintenance. If you have been eager to have a greenhouse in your backyard, South West Greenhouses has a wide selection that is worth checking out.
Once you decide on the suitable greenhouse for your gardening needs, always make maintenance a priority to make it operational for years to come. Here are helpful maintenance tips for novice gardeners:
- Pest Control
One of the critical elements to consider as part of maintenance for a greenhouse is pest control. The ideal way to keep the structure free of pests is to avoid taking them inside in the first place. If you have a greenhouse, you should carefully inspect all plants you plan to bring inside. When a few pests can sneak past the structure’s defenses, they can rapidly multiply and cause damage to your plants inside.
When dealing with pests in your garden, your initial task is to release the pest’s predator into the greenhouse. In case you spot aphids, you should capture or look for ladybugs and cast them outside.
Don’t forget to watch out for any signs of pests continuously. Some indications are insect sounds and perforations in the leaves. Once you find an infested plant, you should remove it right away before the pests move to other plants. If you have enough space, you can designate a particular area for infested plants.
- Regular Cleaning
Depending on the model you have, whether it’s a plastic greenhouse or a glass model, regular cleaning is routine. Besides keeping your greenhouse orderly, you should prioritize a cleaning routine to sterilize all the surfaces. It’s best to use environmentally-friendly soap and warm water to clean the flooring and counters. If you want to get rid of pests and insects, you should also schedule fumigation yearly or twice a year.
Routine cleaning is essential to prevent pests and diseases. Remember that insects and mites might hibernate in the crevices and cracks while plant pathogens will remain in the soil, and algae will thrive. If you want to keep your plants healthy, you can minimize these risks with a combination of disinfecting, preparing, and sanitizing. Although you should do maintenance regularly for a year-round greenhouse, a seasonal greenhouse can significantly benefit from a fall cleaning job.
- Ventilation System
As part of routine care, you should inspect the ventilation system frequently to ensure that it’s working optimally. A well-functioning ventilation system will keep your plants healthy. Once the shutters and louver become squeaky, it might require oiling. It would be best to oil them to prevent any difficulty in opening and closing without too much friction.
- Water Tank and Irrigation System
The watering system of your greenhouse, which includes connecting lines and hoses, requires inspection every few months. The hoses are likely to end up with blockage or form cracks that need replacement or getting rid of the clogs.
- Humidity Level
The humidity level is relatively higher inside a greenhouse than the outside. However, if you overlook the humidity level, it can cause the air inside to become either too humid or too dry. If you want to maintain the right level of humidity in your greenhouse, the following tips can help:
- If the humidity is too low, place a tray or bucket of water on the floor during the day. As the water evaporates, it helps increase the humidity level.
- During the summer season, keep the humidity to a minimum. It would help if you open the vents and windows during the day to ensure a continuous flow of cold air and releasing warm air.
- Avoid watering plants with cold water during summer since it can put the roots in a state of shock. In this state, the plants cannot effectively absorb moisture and nutrients.
- Inspect The Frame
Depending on the frame material of your greenhouse, it requires specific maintenance. If you have an aluminum frame, you should pay close attention to the joints and check for any loose, missing bolts or signs of damage. It would be best if you tighten any loose bolts.
When you have a wooden frame, it requires a repainting job every other year or so. Check for signs of rot and woodworm as well as the condition of the joints. Damp and mold are also potential issues with a wooden frame that you need to monitor.
- Maintain The Base
When deep cleaning your greenhouse, it’s the right time to inspect the base. The ideal base should be solid with a secure frame. An issue of concern with the structure is the formation of small gaps, which can serve as habitats for pests or the source of droughts. Depending on what comprises the base, it should be firm and stable. A loose base can result in the rigidity of the greenhouse structure.
- Check The Greenhouse Panels
It would help if you also inspect the glazing panels in your greenhouse. When any of the panels have damage or cracks, replace them right away. The popular glazing types include glass and polycarbonate panels.
When replacing the panels, wear gloves for protection when handling the panels, especially the glass ones. Determine the exact dimensions of the panels you need to replace. Decide on the material you want to use as replacement panels. If your current panels are glass, it might be best to replace them with tempered glass.
When you have a greenhouse, it’ll make gardening more enjoyable and ensuring the ideal environment to keep your plants healthy. However, you should be ready to tackle the regular maintenance it requires to stay functional all year round, such as cleaning, keeping the ventilation in working order, performing daily checks for structural damage, and monitoring the presence of pests. With the help of these greenhouse maintenance tips, it’ll allow you to keep the condition of your greenhouse in top shape for years to come.