Greenhouse Growing Tips

A greenhouse is ideal for the avid gardener or delicate plant collector. You can grow plants or crops in a controlled environment year-round, without having to worry about the climate outdoors or many pests. With this in mind, greenhouses are very popular in regions with cold winters. A greenhouse is usually made of glass or plastic and can be built in many sizes, from a small, shack-sized greenhouse to a large greenhouse for mass production.

Provide Adequate Ventilation

Because greenhouses can heat up quickly even when it's not very hot outdoors, it's necessary to have adequate ventilation in the greenhouse. Without air circulation, plants won't survive. When spacing plants, spread them evenly apart to facilitate air flow throughout the greenhouse. Choose a ventilation system that works best in your climate, greenhouse size and design. Open the doors and windows to increase air flow.

Greenhouse Location

When choosing a location for the greenhouse, it's important to consider key factors. Choose level ground that receives as much sunlight as possible, particularly in the winter. Look for large objects that could cast shadows. Have the longest side of the greenhouse face south.

Provide Extra Nutrients

To increase the maximum growth for greenhouse plants, add nutrients such as crushed egg shells and coffee grounds for more acidity.

Preventing Pests

Even though a greenhouse reduces the threat of pests, they can still be an issue. Use herbs to deter pests such as borers and mosquitoes. These include cinnamon, chamomile, sage, garlic, neem leaf and lemongrass. Plant these near plants that are at risk or surround them in separate planters.

Using Shade

You can keep the greenhouse cool by using a balance of shading and ventilation. Shading is best installed outside of the greenhouse, says, as it's 40 percent more effective. Shading protects plants from sunburn and overheating. Types of shading include radiant/reflective shades as well as fiberglass, knitted plastic and black polypropylene shades. The shading you choose depends on the type and size of the greenhouse, the plants being grown as well as your budget.

Keywords: greenhouse tips, using a greenhouse, growing in greenhouses

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.