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Greenhouses Bring Gardens in From the Cold by Amy Renea

Posted on August 8, 2013 | Categories: Greenhouses for sale
Appeared in Houzz.com by Amy Renea:
A few months ago I was contacted about appearing on a TV competition show. I had to fill out an application, make a video and tell them what I would do with the money if I won. I said I wanted to build a greenhouse. I never heard back from them, so I’m thinking they thought a greenhouse wasn’t the right thing to spend thousands of dollars on (or perhaps they didn’t like the way I smile or hot glue stuff).

Anyway, competition or no, a greenhouse is still on my wish list. When that windfall comes, it will be blowing in panes of glass, metal fans and row after row of wooden shelving. I will stockpile my greenhouse with aisles of herbs, truckloads of pots and fruit trees galore. Until then, I will satisfy my need to grow plants out of season with homemade cold frames and jerry-rigged greenhouses. Won’t you join me today as we look at some inspirational greenhouses from the great and grandiose to the petite and pretty?

traditional landscape by HartmanBaldwin Design/Build

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There is something magical about a greenhouse situated in the midst of a garden. Plants crawling up the sides and glowing from within make a greenhouse a true celebration of life.
traditional exterior by Amy Renea

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Windows can be straight or tilted to allow more light to fall upon the plants. Make sure at least some of the windows can be opened for ventilation.
traditional  by Amy Renea

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You can use large panes of glass, or minioned panes, or even a combination of sizes scavenged from the dump. Your plants care not how many panes there are — just how much light streams through.
by BC Greenhouse Builders Ltd

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Site your greenhouses with a clear view of the sun. Bushes around the base and a few climbing vines are great, but too many trees will block the sun and defeat the purpose.
traditional exterior by Amy Renea

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I can’t speak of greenhouses without mentioning Longwood Gardens. I recently toured the grounds and could not help but be impressed by the massive conservatories. They are certainly the gold standard.
traditional exterior by Amy Renea

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Not only are the showcase conservatories a sight to behold, but Longwood also has a multitude of workhorse greenhouses. The secret to year-round bloom displays at this garden is a constant rotation of year-round growth in the greenhouses.
traditional landscape by Amy Renea

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Don’t have money for a full-fledged greenhouse but want to grow seedlings? Try a cold frame. A cold frame is basically a base that’s 1 foot to 2 feet high with a window over top. Keep the window on the base during winter and open it slightly to vent as the weather warms up.
traditional landscape by Amy Renea

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This version combines one large concrete base with several sliding windows.
by teakwickerandmore.com

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Maybe you can’t afford a giant greenhouse but want more than a cold frame. Here is an example of midsize DIY greenhouse.
by BC Greenhouse Builders Ltd

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If your DIY chops aren’t the greatest, you can order premade greenhouses in many sizes.
by BC Greenhouse Builders Ltd

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After your greenhouse is built, consider the interior. You will certainly want to use all that light and grow as many plants as you can, but don’t forget to look at the space with a designer’s eye. A focal point in the center adds dimension and flow to this greenhouse.
traditional porch by Conservatory Craftsmen

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Allow the plants to climb up the walls, using hanging baskets and trellises. Greenhouse space is prime real estate, so use every inch.
by BC Greenhouse Builders Ltd

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Once your space is bathed in light and glows green with plants, consider using it for more than growing. Would it be the perfect winter spot for a dinner table?
contemporary exterior by Ron Yeo, FAIA Architect

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Consider attaching the greenhouse directly to your home for use as a sunroom. You can use the space as an extra living area as well as for plants.
eclectic exterior by Chase Building Group

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Whether it is a grandiose conservatory dedicated to plants, a makeshift collection of leftover windows for seedlings or a cottage-inspired greenhouse in your backyard, consider a greenhouse as a way to add more light and green to your life. It probably won’t win you any competitions, but it will likely bring you much joy.