Tips on Using Water Barrels in a Solar Greenhouse

Year round greenhouses, or even those used for season extension, face the challenge of extreme temperature swings. The structure collects excessive amounts of heat during the day when the sun is out, causing them to easily overheat. However, they quickly lose this heat at night due to a lack of insulation, resulting in overcooling or…

Energy-Efficient Ways to Cool a Greenhouse

Growing in a year-round greenhouse often means contending with heat. For most crops, photosynthesis slows when temperatures exceed 95 F. As the dog-days of summer hit, we explore the most energy-efficient ways of cooling a greenhouse. 1. Keep heat out (Shade Cloth)  Best for: all climates The first is to reduce light and heat gain…

5 Tips for Building a Solar-Powered Greenhouse

Integrating solar panels with a greenhouse can make it off-grid, but takes careful consideration of your goals and the best strategy for doing so. “I want a greenhouse with solar panels”, is one of the top requests we get from clients trying to be more energy-efficient. So what are these people really looking for? The…

4 Ways to Use a Greenhouse in the Summer

Greenhouses can often take a back seat during the summer months, when gardens are flourishing outside. But that doesn’t mean they’re un-used. In fact, year-round greenhouses take on new roles to continue growing. Here are 4 strategies for getting the most out of a greenhouse in the summer. 1. Warm Crop Sanctuary One great strategy is…

Top 3 Greenhouse Pests and How to Deal with Them

Pests can affect greenhouses a little differently than the outdoor garden, particularly year-round insulated greenhouses that are warmer and more humid. The top three pests we’ve encountered in our years of greenhouse growing are aphids, fungus gnats and white flies. Of course, is not an exhaustive list –you may encounter many more in your experience --…

The 5 Ws of Planning a Smart Greenhouse

What do I want to grow and when? In other words why do you want a greenhouse? This is the first question we start with when planning any greenhouse, because what you want to grow, over what seasons, dictates a lot about your greenhouse design. Generally, we group greenhouses into three categories by their temperature…

Give starts a boost with DIY grow lights, made from dryer vents

It's that time of year that everyone wants to get their hands in the dirt. Unfortunately, for many of us there are still several more potential-frost weeks left to wait. But that doesn't mean you can't start your garden indoors. If you don't have a year-round greenhouse or a good full-sun spot for starts in your home,…

The Chicken Coop, Greenhouse Combo

These two useful structures for creating a sustainable homestead are not often associated. But, with the right planning, they can be integrated into a single multi-use structure that enhances both environments, as the waste products of one become inputs for the other. Together, a backyard greenhouse/chicken coop can be a year-round food-producing machine… giving you…

Easy Raised Bed Options for a Residential Greenhouse

Whether gardening year-round in a greenhouse, or starting up an outdoor garden this spring, here's a quick round-up of several ways to make your own raised garden beds. Cinder Block Easily stackable, these can be combined in any configuration. Blocks should be secured together using mortar or rebar. We suggest also filling the pockets with stone or gravel.…

3 Types of Greenhouse Floors

Even an insulated year-round greenhouse doesn’t need a finished floor as a house does. Most of the footprint will be used as a planting area, which may or may not need a level finished surface. Your flooring option usually depends on how you want to grow in the greenhouse – whether growing directly in the…