Summer residents! We'll help you build the perfect polycarbonate greenhouse for your crops to grow by leaps and bounds.
Greenhouses with film and arcs, as well as glass greenhouses built with their own hands, are gradually becoming a thing of the past. Most summer residents now prefer to install polycarbonate greenhouses. They are installed mainly at the beginning of the summer season, although manufacturers claim that this can be done at any time of the year.
Polycarbonate greenhouses are the best option in terms of convenience/price/quality ratio. Such a greenhouse can be used for about 15 years, it is not afraid of low temperatures, has good light transmission and protects plants from the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation thanks to a special protective coating.
But it often happens that greenhouses do not withstand harsh winters, sag under the weight of snow and deform from great pressure. This is a question about the quality of greenhouses, so before deciding on the choice of design, you need to know about the general rules for choosing.
It is believed that rectangular greenhouses are more reliable than options with a semicircular profile. The most durable are steel frames made of rectangular or square section profiles. A galvanized steel profile is less reliable, may not withstand strong winds or sag under the snow.
The optimal thickness of polycarbonate should be at least 4-6 mm, a thickness of less than 3.7 mm is considered insufficient, even if the manufacturer assures you that the greenhouse is of high quality.
On the market you can find two types of polycarbonate - cellular and monolithic. For high-quality greenhouses, cellular polycarbonate is used, it is he who has the characteristics necessary for plant growth: it transmits sunlight well, but at the same time protects from ultraviolet radiation. In this case, polycarbonate sheets must be marked with a special marking, which indicates the presence of an appropriate protective coating: “cellular polycarbonate with a protective layer against UV”.
Greenhouses larger than 10-15 sq m are recommended to be installed on the foundation. Most greenhouses are relatively light in construction and can be easily overturned by strong winds. Polycarbonate greenhouses are usually attached to a steel base. But for large stationary greenhouses, it can take the form of a strip foundation with a brick or stone plinth.
If the main selection criteria are taken into account, then the greenhouses will not have to be raked snow (only if in exceptional cases), they will survive snowy winters and withstand strong gusts of wind. Moreover, shoveling snow and scraping off the ice crust is not recommended, as this can scratch the protective coating, thereby reducing light transmission and UV protection.
Where to install a greenhouse?
Before choosing a place for a greenhouse, you need to understand how you will use it: year-round or only in the spring and summer. If all year round, then this is a completely different story that requires more careful study. If your greenhouse will be designed for year-round use, you need to put it closer to the house in order to bring all the main communications, because. you will need a system of additional lighting, heating and water supply.
The quality of the crop will depend on where you put the greenhouse, so it is important to consider everything: how the light falls, where the wind blows, where trees and shrubs grow, etc.
- Greenhouse should be placed in a well-lit area. Sunlight should hit it as long as possible during the day. It is best if it is located on the side (longer) side to the south. The place where the greenhouse is installed should be illuminated in the morning, because. this is the coldest time of the day. If the greenhouse only warms up in the evening, it will not help the plants produce a good harvest.
- It is not recommended to put the greenhouse close to the fence or other buildings, because. snow will linger in this gap and melt longer.
- Greenhouse must be protected from drafts. The wind from the north side or the constantly walking wind, for example, between two buildings, is especially dangerous.
- For the installation of greenhouses, it is also important to take into account the flow of groundwater. The minimum water depth should be 1.2 meters or deeper.
How to prepare soil in a greenhouse?
Most summer residents have a hard loam under the top layer of soil, which prevents the flow of water, therefore, before installing a greenhouse, you need to prepare a good drainage layer. To do this, you need to dig a pit, first fill in a layer of gravel, then sand, and only after that fill in a layer of fertile soil. It can be sifted peat with sawdust 3:1, soddy soil mixed with peat and sand, or earth with humus and sawdust in a ratio of 2:1:1.
How to water plants in a greenhouse?
It is advisable to water in the morning, but if the street is not very hot, you can water it during the day, the main thing is that the water should not be icy from the hose. For irrigation in greenhouses for these purposes, they usually keep a special large container in which the water is heated to the desired temperature.
You can water the plants in the late afternoon, but at night this can provoke the formation of excessive moisture, which leads to the spread of various diseases, rot and fungi. In any case, if the plants suffer from a lack of moisture, you do not need to wait for a favorable time of day, it is better to water immediately, preventing the plants from drying out and withering from lack of moisture.