Adding a Conservatory or Greenhouse to your Property

conservatory by lert

This GardenLady always dreamed of having a greenhouse. Other terms for the same or similar buildings are hothouse, conservatory or even sunroom.

Historically the concept of having a building that can be used to grow vegetables indoors even during the cold of winter goes back to the Romans. Apparently Tiberius was said to have eaten a cucumber-like vegetable every day. But the first modern greenhouses were built in Italy in the 13th century to keep the exotic plants that explorers brought back from the tropics. From there they spread to other European countries. Today, the Netherlands has many of the largest greenhouses in the world, some of them so vast that they are able to produce millions of vegetables every year. The conservatory at Kew Gardens may be one of the largest conservatories in the world, but I believe that the Eden Project in Cornwall England is the largest in the world.

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Bob’s Market and Greenhouses

Another person I met at the conference was one of the owner’s of Bob’s Market and Greenhouses. Later he invited a group of us to visit their greenhouses and meet the rest of the family who run this wonderful company. We not only got a chance to learn about this company and ask questions, but we had the opportunity to tour the Greenhouses.

Bob’s is one of the many nurseries that raises the seeds that Ball Horticultural Company creates and produces. Bob’s Greenhouses plant the seeds and creates what is referred to as ” plugs” (little pots with plants) that we buy in the retail nurseries around the US where we shop.

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The Importance of Pest Control in the Greenhouse

Spider mites by theGardenDeva

TheGardenLady has invited people with horticultural interests and expertise to contribute posts to this blog.  The following post  about the importance of pest control in the greenhouse was submitted by Ahmet Korkmaz.

In the last decade the field of agriculture has undergone many important changes and improvements. People from all over the world are interested in implementing the new ideas that are being advanced by researchers in this developing field.

Greenhouse plantation is one of the exciting advancements that that has been adopted by farmers from all over the world.  Some of the the fruits and vegetables that are commonly planted in a greenhouse include cherries, drupes, radishes, cabbages, and tomatoes. These fruits and vegetables require unique ambient conditions, which a greenhouse can facilitate.

In a greenhouse,  sunlight is amplified for the plants because it gets trapped under a glass cover with four walls, which shield the plants from the heat that is generated. This extra sunlight and controlled heat promotes plant metabolism and provides nice returns in the form of vegetables and plants.

There are other advantages of growing of plants in a greenhouse. The leaves and other shoot parts of the plant can be protected from different kinds of chemical attacks that are air-borne.  Also, many pests and insects can be avoided to some extent in a greenhouse.  But a greenhouse does not prevent all pests.

Common pests in a greenhouse

Spider mites (see photo above), weevils, white flies, aphids and leaf miners are common pests in a greenhouse, the most common of which are the spider mites. Weevils cause a lot of damage to the surface of leaves. White flies tend to attack the major part of root and shoot systems. Aphids can be deadly to the green parts of a plant by feeding on a pigment called chlorophyll. This drastically affects the plant’s overall metabolism.  Leaf miners cause damage in tomato plantation. These pests tend to bore into the leaf’s vegetative part, which renders the leaf unable to take advantage of sunlight.

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Building a Greenhouse

One of the things TheGardenLady always wished for was to have a Greenhouse. Perhaps TheGardenLady‘s readers have also had that wish for themselves. I have a friend who built one for her orchids.

Where to start seemed to be one problem and cost seemed to be another.  But with the computer as your library, there are many sites to check for easy to build cheap greenhouses.

Surfing and reading on the internet TheGardenLady discovered a site that said a person could build a  greenhouse using their empty discarded plastic bottles. Growing up TheGardenLady read on Ripley’s Believe It or Not about a man who built his house using discarded bottles. I went to see that house and since then have seen numerous such uses of bottles in construction on HGTV. With today’s bad economy building a greenhouse by recycling old plastic bottles sounds intriguing and cheap. The photo of the finished bottle greenhouse looks interesting and the plans cost either $4 or$5 dollars.

After this plastic bottle site, TheGardenLady found numerous sites that tells what is needed for a greenhouse project.  See here, for example.

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