Lars Lund

08 Sep 2020 14:33

Blend your greenhouse in with the garden

The surroundings of the greenhouse

Spring has arrived and it's time to put up the greenhouse

Usually, when placing the greenhouse, you have had to consider wind and sun, ie a discussion about which corner of the world the greenhouse gable should face, so that it gets as much sun and as little wind as possible. It is certainly not an irrelevant discussion, especially not the discussion about shelter. Recent years have shown that shelter is an important factor. I wrote a bit about that in the previous newsletter. This time I will focus more on how to make the greenhouse harmonize with the rest of the garden. If you look at greenhouses that are used, not just for old bikes or winter firewood, they are a very integral part of the garden. The others, half-empty or with bikes, are located in a less attractive place.

If the greenhouse is placed nearby or directly by one of the home's most used places, then you will use the greenhouse fore frequently, for the sole reason that it offers more options. It can to a greater extent be used to relax in, or if the house is placed as an extension of a terrace, you can from the terrace enjoy the view of the plants inside the house. If you sit outside in the English summer weather enjoying a coffee and it starts raining, you can quickly move under the warm roof and enjoy the drops of rain on the greenhouse roof. That requires that the roof is made of glass, of course, but a greenhouse that must be integrated as a beautiful part of the garden must also be made of glass. Glass blends much better into the garden and the greenhouse will at first seem invisible and yet larger than it is when you go inside. Glass gives a nice feeling of spaciousness.

Also for the children

The garden is also the children's garden and the dog's, and small children and pets want to be near adults. That discourages people from placing the greenhouse close to where they relax, and perhaps that is the reason why people hide away their greenhouse. But this fear of the children shattering the glass can be addressed. It is extremely rare that people get injured and if it happens, it is often the lower glass that you shatter. Here you can put in toughened glass or buy black or clear acrylic sheets that protect the lower windows and give a beautiful edge. Alternatively, you can make your own safeguard with poultry netting on the lower glass or green painted veneer sheets on the window. One could also consider whether the most exposed place might have to be walled up so that the greenhouse is raised or that the end gable is walled. That offers completely new possibilities. Finally, you can choose to get toughened glass in the entire greenhouse. It costs more, but you also get the glass in long lanes so there are no small joints between the glass. As extra storm protection, long lanes are better than smaller pieces of glass assembled with clips.

Raised above all

One of the most advanced ways I have seen a greenhouse being placed has been on an elevated wooden patio. I have actually seen two of those. One was a home-built greenhouse in wood, where you go one step up and the terrace is integrated into the house. The second was wilder. You had to go up several steps and the greenhouse was small. It seems like a cave in the treetop and it was quite nice.

The message is: Think about where you can enjoy the garden from the greenhouse in the best way. In that way, you will be happier with the location of the greenhouse in the long run. If necessary, frame the area with string and sticks, so you can get a sense of how much space it requires. Put a chair inside the frame and a small garden table, then you have an idea of what the view will be like when considering the location.

Om Lars Lund

Lars Lund
Danish horticulturist and journalist
Lars Lund has for many years engaged in the garden and greenhouse. Lars has published many books about greenhouses, and he has participated in many Danish horticultural TV shows. He is a walking garden encyclopaedia, and he has answers for most basic cultivation questions – also the more ambitious ones.  

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