If you’re wanting to build a greenhouse, but are looking to save some money, then a lean-to greenhouse kit may be the solution for you. A lean-to greenhouse is simply build up against an existing structure saving you the cost of building that wall.
When choosing a lean-to greenhouse kit consider these factors, size, material, glazing, venting, price, reviews and warranty. This will give you everything you need to know and be able to make a good decision.
How to Choose a Lean-to Greenhouse Kit
Choosing a lean-to greenhouse kit can be a daunting task, but with some basic considerations, you can select the best one for your needs.
Here are some factors to consider when choosing a lean-to greenhouse kit:
Size… Consider the size of the greenhouse that you need. Determine the amount of space you have available and what you plan to grow. A smaller greenhouse may be suitable if you only want to grow a few plants, while a larger one may be necessary if you want to grow many plants or vegetables.
Material… Lean-to greenhouse kits are made of various materials such as wood, aluminum, and PVC. Wooden kits are typically more attractive and natural-looking, while aluminum and PVC are more durable and require less maintenance.
Glazing… The type of glazing used in the greenhouse kit is an essential factor to consider. Some glazing materials are more durable and allow more light to pass through than others. The most common types of glazing include glass, polycarbonate, and acrylic. Each of these materials has its benefits and drawbacks, so consider what you need.
Ventilation… Having proper ventilation is essential for a healthy greenhouse environment. Consider a kit that has built-in ventilation features such as vents, fans, or louvers.
Price… Prices can vary, depending on the size, materials used, and features included. Determine your budget and select a kit that meets your needs without exceeding your budget.
Reviews… Read reviews from other customers who have purchased the same kit to determine whether it is of good quality and whether it meets their needs. A good place to find reviews is Amazon. You can check out Amazons greenhouse kits and read the reviews here.
Warranty… Ensure that the kit you select has a warranty that covers any defects or issues that may arise during installation or usage.
If you want to build your Greenhouse, outdoor sheds, benches, garden shed, and other projects and save $100’s on your cost? Check out Ted’s Woodworking Plans here. You don’t need a big fancy workshop or $1,000’s in tools.
Is it Cheaper to Build a Greenhouse or Buy a Kit?
The cost of building a greenhouse versus buying a kit can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the greenhouse, the materials used, and the complexity of the design.
Building a greenhouse from scratch can be cheaper than buying a kit if you have access to affordable building materials and are skilled in construction. However, building a greenhouse can also be more time-consuming and may require specialized tools or skills. Additionally, you may need to obtain building permits or hire a contractor, which can add to the overall cost.
On the other hand, purchasing a greenhouse kit can be more expensive upfront, but it may be more convenient and can save you time and effort. Greenhouse kits usually come with all the necessary materials and instructions, making it easier to assemble the structure. Kits can also come in a range of sizes and designs, allowing you to choose one that fits your needs and budget.
Ultimately, the decision to build a greenhouse from scratch or buy a kit will depend on your budget, time constraints, and construction skills. It may be helpful to research the cost of materials and compare it to the cost of purchasing a kit before deciding. Get more information in my article 10 Benefits of an Indoor Greenhouse if your wanting to use a small greenhouse in your home.
What are the Disadvantages of a Lean-to Greenhouse?
A lean-to greenhouse is a type of greenhouse that is attached to an existing structure, such as a house or a garage, with one side of the greenhouse sloping down to the ground. While lean-to greenhouses have many advantages, such as being space-efficient and cost-effective, they also have some disadvantages, including:
Limited Space… The size of a lean-to greenhouse is limited by the size of the existing structure it is attached to. This means that a lean-to greenhouse may not be suitable for large-scale gardening projects or for growing a wide variety of plants.
Limited Sunlight… The location of a lean-to greenhouse is dependent on the location of the existing structure it is attached to, which may not provide optimal sunlight exposure for plants. This can lead to problems with plant growth and development.
Limited Ventilation… A lean-to greenhouse may have limited ventilation due to its proximity to the existing structure. This can lead to problems with temperature and humidity control, which can negatively impact plant growth.
Structural Limitations… The design of a lean-to greenhouse may be limited by the structural integrity of the existing building it is attached to. This can impact the types of materials that can be used and the overall strength and stability of the greenhouse.
Potential for Damage to Existing Structure… Attached to an existing structure may cause damage to that structure over time, particularly if the greenhouse is not installed properly or if it is not maintained adequately.
Overall, while a lean-to greenhouse can be a great option for those with limited space and budget, it is important to consider these potential disadvantages before making a final decision.
Where is the Best Place to Put a Lean-to Greenhouse?
You’ll want to choose a location that receives plenty of sunlight and is protected from harsh winds.
Here are some factors to consider when choosing a location:
Sunlight… Choose a location that receives at least 6 hours of sunlight per day. South-facing locations are ideal because they receive the most direct sunlight throughout the day. Avoid placing your greenhouse in a spot that is shaded by buildings, trees, or other structures.
Wind Protection… Place your greenhouse in a location that is sheltered from strong winds. A windy location can damage your greenhouse and make it difficult to regulate the temperature inside.
Proximity to Water and Power… You’ll need access to water and power to run irrigation systems, heaters, and other equipment in your greenhouse. Consider placing your greenhouse near a water source and electrical outlet.
Accessibility… Choose a location that is easily accessible for you to enter and exit the greenhouse and move plants and equipment in and out.
Drainage… Make sure your greenhouse is located on a site that has good drainage to prevent water from accumulating around the foundation.
What Angle Should a Lean-to Greenhouse Roof Be?
The angle of a lean-to greenhouse roof can vary depending on several factors such as the local climate, the type of glazing used, and the desired aesthetics. However, a commonly recommended angle for a lean-to greenhouse roof is between 15 and 30 degrees.
A 15-degree angle is ideal for areas with mild climates and where snow accumulation is not a concern. This angle allows for maximum sunlight exposure to the plants and helps to create a warmer environment inside the greenhouse.
On the other hand, a 30-degree angle is better suited for areas with heavy snowfall or where wind loads are a concern. This angle allows snow and debris to slide off the roof more easily, reducing the risk of damage.
What is the Cheapest Way to Keep a Greenhouse Warm?
The cheapest way to keep a greenhouse warm is to maximize passive solar heating and insulation.
Here are some tips:
Orientation… Orient your greenhouse to face south to maximize the amount of sunlight it receives. This will help heat the greenhouse during the day.
Insulation… Insulate the walls and roof of your greenhouse to prevent heat loss. This can be done with bubble wrap, foam insulation, or double-layered plastic.
Thermal Mass… Use thermal mass materials such as water, stone or concrete in the greenhouse. These materials absorb and store heat during the day and release it at night.
Air Circulation… Install fans or vents to circulate air and prevent cold spots. This can help keep the temperature more consistent and reduce heating costs.
Shade Cloth… In the summer months, use shade cloth to prevent overheating and reduce cooling costs.
Heat-Retaining Coverings… Use heat-retaining coverings such as blankets or straw bales at night to trap heat and keep the temperature stable.
Use a Space Heater… As a last resort, you can use a space heater to provide additional heat. However, this can be expensive and should be used sparingly.
Should You Put a Floor in a Greenhouse?
Putting a floor in a greenhouse is not necessary, but it can provide certain benefits depending on the type of greenhouse and how it will be used.
Here are some factors to consider when deciding whether to install a floor in a greenhouse:
Drainage… If you are growing plants in pots or containers, a solid floor will prevent excess water from draining away. This can lead to waterlogging and root rot, so it’s important to ensure that the greenhouse has adequate drainage. If you decide to install a floor, make sure it has drainage holes or channels to allow water to escape.
Insulation… A floor can provide insulation and help to maintain a more stable temperature inside the greenhouse. This can be especially beneficial in colder climates, where a concrete or insulated floor can help to retain heat.
Soil Type… If you plan to grow plants directly in the ground, the type of soil in your greenhouse may influence your decision about whether to install a floor. If the soil is prone to flooding or has poor drainage, a floor can help to prevent waterlogging and ensure that your plants have adequate drainage.
Cost… Installing a floor can add to the cost of building a greenhouse, so you’ll need to consider whether the benefits outweigh the expense.
Do I Need Roof Vent in a Greenhouse?
Yes, it is generally recommended to have a roof vent on a greenhouse for proper ventilation. Ventilation is important to regulate temperature, humidity and to provide fresh air for plants to thrive. Without proper ventilation, a greenhouse can become too hot and humid, leading to plant stress and disease.
A roof vent allows hot air to escape from the top of the greenhouse, while cooler air is drawn in from the sides or bottom, creating a natural circulation of air. This helps to regulate temperature and humidity levels and prevent the buildup of moisture that can lead to fungal diseases.
There are different types of roof vents available, including manual and automatic ones. Manual vents require you to open and close them by hand, while automatic vents are operated by a temperature or humidity sensor that automatically opens and closes the vent as needed.
Overall, having a roof vent in your greenhouse can be beneficial for the health and growth of your plants. You can checkout Amazons Roof Vents here.
Does a Greenhouse Need a Clear Roof?
A greenhouse does not necessarily need a clear roof but having one can provide significant benefits. A clear roof allows natural sunlight to enter the greenhouse, which is essential for photosynthesis and plant growth. Additionally, it can help regulate temperature and humidity levels by allowing solar radiation to enter and trap heat inside the greenhouse.
However, there are some situations where a clear roof may not be desirable. In hot climates, a clear roof may result in excessive heat buildup inside the greenhouse, which can harm plants. In this case, a shade cloth or a partially opaque roof may be necessary to regulate temperature and light.
What Temperature is Too Cold for a Greenhouse?
The ideal temperature for a greenhouse depends on the plants being grown, but generally speaking, most plants prefer temperatures between 60°F (15.5°C) and 75°F (24°C) during the day and slightly cooler temperatures at night.
Temperatures below 40°F (4.5°C) can be too cold for most plants in a greenhouse, as this can cause frost damage, slowed growth, and even death in some plants. However, some cold-hardy plants such as kale, spinach, and lettuce can tolerate temperatures down to 25°F (-3.9°C) or even lower.
In general, it’s best to keep the greenhouse temperature above freezing and to use heaters or insulation to maintain a consistent temperature during cold weather. It’s also important to monitor the temperature regularly and adjust the heating and ventilation systems as needed to ensure optimal growing conditions for your plants.
How Do You Keep an Unheated Greenhouse Warm at Night?
Keeping an unheated greenhouse warm at night can be a challenging task, but there are several strategies you can try to help retain heat and maintain a warmer temperature inside the greenhouse:
Insulate the Greenhouse… Add extra layers of insulation to the walls and roof of the greenhouse, such as bubble wrap, polystyrene or horticultural fleece. This can help to prevent heat loss and maintain a more consistent temperature inside.
Use Thermal Mass… Place thermal mass materials such as large containers of water, bricks, or stones inside the greenhouse. These materials absorb heat during the day and release it slowly at night, helping to keep the temperature more stable.
Cover the Greenhouse at Night… Cover the greenhouse with a blanket, tarp or other material at night to help retain heat. Make sure to remove the cover during the day to allow sunlight in.
Use Heaters… If you have access to electricity, consider using a small electric heater to warm the greenhouse. Be sure to follow all safety guidelines and monitor the temperature closely.
Grow Heat-Loving Plants… Choose plants that can tolerate cooler temperatures or that naturally produce heat, such as herbs like rosemary or thyme.
Ventilate the Greenhouse During the Day… On sunny days, open the greenhouse vents or doors to allow hot air to escape and fresh air to circulate. This can help to prevent overheating and maintain a more moderate temperature.
How to Build a Greenhouse Out of Wood
Building a greenhouse out of wood can be a great project for gardeners who want to extend their growing season and protect their plants from harsh weather conditions.
Here are the general steps to build a simple wooden greenhouse:
Treated lumber (2x4s or 2x6s)
Polycarbonate sheets or glass panels
Foundation material (such as concrete blocks or landscape timbers)
Roofing material (such as asphalt shingles or metal roofing)
Circular saw or handsaw
1] Choose a location for your greenhouse that receives adequate sunlight and has good drainage. Prepare the foundation by leveling the ground and adding a layer of gravel or sand.
2] Frame the base of your greenhouse using treated lumber. Use a level to ensure that it is even and square. You can use concrete blocks or landscape timbers as a foundation.
3] Build the walls of the greenhouse by attaching upright 2x4s or 2x6s to the base. Space them evenly and secure them with screws. Leave space for windows and a door.
4] Cut and attach crossbeams to the top of the walls to support the roof. Make sure they are level and secure.
5] Install the roof by attaching treated lumber rafters to the crossbeams. Make sure they are evenly spaced and securely fastened.
6] Cover the roof with polycarbonate sheets or glass panels. You can use screws or special clips to hold them in place.
7] Install windows on the sides of the greenhouse by cutting holes in the walls and attaching frames with hinges. Make sure they are weather-sealed and can be easily opened and closed.
8] Install a door in the front of the greenhouse. You can make your own or purchase a pre-made door. Attach hinges and a latch to keep it closed.
9] Finish the exterior by adding trim and painting or staining the wood.
10] Install the flooring and any shelves or benches that you want inside the greenhouse.
11] Finally, add any necessary heating, ventilation, and watering systems to keep your plants healthy.
Building a wooden greenhouse can be a fun and rewarding project, but it does require some carpentry skills and attention to detail. Make sure to follow all safety precautions and local building codes.
If you want to build your very own Greenhouse, outdoor sheds, benches, garden shed, and other projects and save $100’s on your cost? Check out Ted’s Woodworking Plans here. You don’t need a big fancy workshop or $1,000’s in tools.
I hope you have found the information you need to choose a lean-to greenhouse kit, or to build your own. Thanks for reading.