My Home Made Greenhouse

     I had been thinking about a greenhouse for years now. Last year it became a critical need. My collection of Cacti & Succulents had grown to the point where I could no longer winter the tender stuff in the house, just not enough room near sunny windows.
     It was late fall and I was in the middle of building my garage when I really started to worry. It was getting cold at night! Then I got a flyer from Harbor freight that had a 6 foot by 8 foot aluminum frame greenhouse with double walled polycarbonate for $299. I thought "At that price I could buy two and put them end to end and have one big greenhouse." Yeah, right? When I got them home and unboxed them I realized the things were so cheaply made the first time the wind blew it would either end up in the neighbors yard or simply fold in on itself. I was so miffed I almost took them back, then realized there was nothing wrong with the poly panels, it was just the framing that was cheap.
     So I got to work in my half finished garage building 2 X 3 frames that I fastened the poly panels to with a cedar strip and some screws with rubber washers. I then screwed the panels together to build the walls, temporarily screwing the walls together in the corners. I built as much as I could in the garage then a buddy and I carried the four walls outside and set them up. I put the roof on outside with more cedar strips and some 1/8" thick rubber weatherstripping. I'm very pleased with the result. It got rained on a few times and didn't leak at all.

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New pictures, October 2006

     I've made some improvements this year. Last year all I had was some wood tables and plastic shelves. This year I built in some 30 inch wide shelves made of 2 x 3's and used redwood fence boards. They gave me a lot more shelf space for my plants and I managed to get everything in. I also added a thermostatically controlled exhaust fan to keep it cooler. It's a small attic fan that I got at Home Depot. So far it's managing to keep it about the same temp as outside during the day.

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All images and text are copyright 2005-Present D.S. Franges, unless otherwise noted.