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Greenhouses vs Polytunnels
Growing your own fruit and vegetables is a great way of cutting down on your food costs as well as providing healthy meals for your family. You can extend the productivity of your plants and even grow them out of season by using a greenhouse or a polytunnel. Both greenhouses and polytunnels have their good and bad points and which is the best choice for you will depend on your space and situation.
Pros and Cons of a Greenhouse
Greenhouses are generally quite expensive to buy and the larger the greenhouse, the higher the cost. When installing a greenhouse you may need help from an experienced fitter. You will need to ensure that the ground is level and you will have to have a solid base to support the structure.
Once in place, they are difficult to move so you need to think carefully about the best position. However, if you keep it well maintained it can last for thirty years or longer.
There are three options for greenhouse glazing. Single glass panes are the cheapest but are also prone to breaking and can be dangerous for children and pets. Toughened horticultural glass is designed to crumble into cubes when it breaks, making it a safer but more expensive option. Polycarbonate panels will not break like glass and will diffuse the light, preventing delicate plants from being scorched by the sun. However, during strong winds, they may blow out of the frame.
Strong sunlight can also raise the temperature of your greenhouse too high, wilting the plants and making it difficult to work inside. When choosing a greenhouse from Argos you will have the option of vents and windows to help you control the temperature. You can also use netting to diffuse the sunlight.
To extend the growing season, your greenhouse can be heated. However, this can be costly, especially if your greenhouse is large.
To increase your growing space, smaller plants can be grown on tiered shelving units which will make your plants easier to reach and will look attractive from the outside.
Pros and Cons of a Polytunnel
Compared to a greenhouse, the cost of a polytunnel is lower, particularly if you want a larger size. Unlike a greenhouse, a polytunnel does not need a solid base as it is anchored directly into the soil. It can also be set up on a sloping surface. Polytunnels are relatively easy to set up by yourself although you can have it erected for you.
The polythene is very strong and usually lasts for about five years. Should it need it, repair kits are readily available. The polythene diffuses the sunlight, preventing scorched plants and making it more pleasant to work in during a hot day.
Larger polytunnels give you more space to grow directly into the ground and this makes them ideal for root vegetables and fruit trees.
Most polytunnels have a door at each end which can provide adequate ventilation. However, side vents can be added to larger tunnels to ensure that there is enough air circulation.
When deciding whether to buy a greenhouse or a polytunnel the main things you need to consider are its location and how much space you have, how much money you want to spend and what you plan to grow in it.
Storage in a cool dry place is essential for your seeds, plant pots and tools to keep them in good condition and a shed is the ideal place. For more information on the range that is available click here for a garden shed .
The Garden Shed
The garden shed is not just the place to sneak a quiet moment nor is it the only building that your garden needs. Look here on THE Gardening Website and you will find a huge range of garden buildings.
Of course, you will see where to buy a shed, but you will also find elegant arbours, splendid conservatories, charming gazebos as well as a range of garden buildings for garden storage. You may need a Wendy house or a tree house as a play house for the children. All these are on THE Gardening Website and they will make your garden more attractive.
Do you need a space to yourself where you can work in peace? Here on THE Gardening Website you will find the manufacturers of 'the room outside' which could also be used as an office or games room.
Whether you need a log cabin or a summerhouse, a studio or a pool room, a workshop or a bird box THE Gardening Website will show you what is available and where to buy it.
So - things to think about:
what will you be using your garden building for?
what space do you have for your garden building?
does your garden building need a base?
will you need a power supply to your garden building and how can this be fitted?
will you need professional help to their erect your garden building?
will your garden building require regular treatment?
do you need planning permission and if so, you will need to speak to your local planning authority for further information?
With the modern propensity to spend more time in our gardens, keeping our outside space looking clean and tidy becomes a priority. Sheds are the answer to storage problems in your front or back garden. A wooden, metal or plastic shed is a useful and attractive place to keep all your gardening equipment, toys, bikes and wheelie bins out of sight. You can entertain or relax in your now tidy garden with a quiet drink without worrying about clutter because it is all in your shed.
Before you order your shed you should find out whether you need planning permission to erect one in your front or back garden. The law regarding sheds varies from one area to another and the best thing to do is to contact your local planning department to see whether your plans will need agreement from your local council. Once you have a better understanding of what you can and cannot do in your front or back garden, you can start looking at the range of sheds on offer.
Wood, Metal or Plastic Sheds
When you mention garden sheds , many people of a certain age will picture a lean to at the bottom of the garden where dad kept his tools and spent his Saturday afternoons. Nowadays sheds can make an attractive addition to any garden, whether you decide on a wood, metal or plastic shed. When you start shopping around for sheds you should keep in mind the building’s purpose. Do you want somewhere to store your bikes, your wheelie bin, or an all purpose storage and work shed?
If you like pottering and have all the latest garden gadgets then one of the wooden sheds available with built in windows and shelving would be an ideal choice. Wooden sheds come in different shapes and sizes and very often have a ten year anti-rot guarantee. If you have a family who enjoy cycling, metal sheds will keep them safe and dry and out of sight.
Building a Shed
If you are thinking about building a shed then you need to ensure that you purchase sustainable timber. Look for companies and timber yards that are FSC approved is the best way of ascertaining that you are buying timber from a sustainable and reliable source. If you have timber left from a dismantled construction then it is worth recycling some of that material when it comes to building your shed.
Take care when choosing paint and varnish when you are building a shed as some contain high levels of VOC, ingredients that can pollute the air. Always check the labels on paints and varnishes and try to avoid choosing products that have hazard warnings attached. You should always go for products with the lowest amount of VOC ingredients.
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