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New Greenhouse

Hi All,

Brand new to gardening, but I moved into a new house last year and the old family left us their greenhouse.

While I've prioritised other elements of the house and garden, I test grew a few tomatoes to see if I had a green thumb - and they are turning out pretty well!

So I think I want to give the green house a shot, build some staging and try go some fruit and veg. But I have no idea where to start!

It's not massive, about 1.5 meters by 2 meters. So do I build staging? Do I build one tier or two (does two block sunlight for those below?)

What should I try grow? How much?

When do I start planting for different seasons?

Basically, is there an idiot's guide to getting started because I can't find one!

Any help would be appreciated.




  • herbaceousherbaceous Posts: 2,318

    Lucky you liamj! I assume previous owner knew what they were doing so no dithering about where to site it image

    My only horticultural experience is my own and stuff borrowed from others but I can tell you how I manage my 6' x 8' (still work in old money, sorry) and maybe you will get some ideas? I used to have staging but found in a small greenhouse a freestanding, small potting table is more use. Aluminium for practical reasons with a top and under shelf. Then I bought two of those cheap mini greenhouses which are self assembly, with it built I have 4 shelves for small plants, potting on etc. by early summer it is split in two because aubergines, peppers and so on are getting too tall. No problem with light as the 'shelves' are wire mesh.

    Other side has a rectangular hole in paving for drainage, two small pallettes over the top for bags growing tomatoes, cucumbers then peppers, aubergines when they get really big.

    At the moment I am sowing next crop of peas in loo roll tubes, lettuce and beetroot. Not really a flower person but plenty of advice will follow about that I promise you - I have had bags of help from forum members who are also very sympathetic to the inevitable disasters as well.

    "The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it."  Sir Terry Pratchett
  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,904


    I cut my teeth on these expert books. They will get you started and you can develop your knowledge by experience and asking on here.

    I don't have the Greenhouse one but I have two or three others and I still refer to them.

    (I'm not advertising but that one that I used in the pic is on fleabay for a couple of £) image

  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,669

    I got nice cheap green  metal staging e-bay, Homebase have a lovelly sturdy, treated timber potting bench, a really good size with underneath shelves, for £29.99, got one on Sunday, went in there for fencing materals.  You couldnt make it for that price.  Its kit form, WARNING greenhouse growing is adictive! I inherited a 6 x8 and 6 x 2 leanto, we added a nice green metal one 6 x 8 on our veg plot last year.  You can be in the greenhouse, when its not nice enough to be outside,I have a cheap metal potting bench in the top greenhouse, liner when potting up came from £1 shop! I indend to use this new wooden one by a BBQ for putting food etc. on after the potting has been done.

  • KeenOnGreenKeenOnGreen Posts: 1,824

    Best greenhouse advice I've seen was to leave the door open during hot days otherwise you will have a hothouse that is unsuitable for most plants. We kept ours closed all the time for years but seedlings in particular fare much better now that we leave the doors open. Lets pollinators in too.  Recommend aluminium staging. Our wooden staging is heavy and has warped. Free standing staging is also better. Ours is bolted to the frame and not practical when you want to adjust the spacing.

  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,669

    I agree Keen, our "top" greenhouse  and lean to greenhouses have aluminium staging, (a lot cheaper than wood, doesnt look as nice though) our new greenhouse has roof vents both sides,louvres opposite the door.  You can add these things at later stages by removing a pane of glass.  I am amazed you managed to get away with leaving your door closed.2013 I grew tomatoes in raised beds, got Blossom End Rot, because March/April were so hot in the day, followed by "normal" temp.  at night.   I was damping down several times a day, and at one point had an electric fan going in there. Up till then I had them in pots,took them out in the days, till it warmed up,at night and they grew too big.  Its all trial and error really, grow what you like to eat,we cant answer that one, it will expend your growing season both ends of the year.  My cheap as chips green metal staging has mesh shelves, it folds up to almost nothing should you require, looks quite flimsy, but I overwinter quite heavy pots on it.  Got green shading and green fleece on e-bay, that works as double glazing in winter and shade in summer, I never removed it.Dont laugh I still have my 70s Alan Titchmarsh gardening book!  He had a minute garden those days, BUT still had a tiny greenhouse!

  • liamjliamj Posts: 2

    Thanks for the tips and suggestions everyones! Great start into the greenhouse community. Much appreciated!

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