Do not tread lightly onto the thin ice that is the decision to put a greenhouse in your backyard. Just like animals, some backyard greenhouses are more equal than others. Take the semisphere greenhouse, for instance. Anyone who is a fan of I. M. Pei will appreciate having a greenhouse in the angular shape of a geodesic dome. You can get a geodesic dome greenhouse whether you’ve got a backyard roughly equivalent to the size of Paris Hilton’s brain or Albert Einstein’s brain.
If you’ve got a backyard the size of Paris Hilton’s brain when she’s on drugs (IF?) then you are also in luck. These mini-greenhouses are perfect for British backyards or American suburban planned community backyards. The standard size of a mini-greenhouse is 4 by 6 feet, but you can even find some that are just 3 by 4 feet. Beware growing any plants that start saying “Feed me!” because these very small greenhouses just won’t be large enough for containment. What we’re essentially talking about is kind of an enclosed pergola; perfect for growing small hothouse flowers while you listen to the Irish band Hothouse Flowers on your iPod.
Some portable greenhouses actually can be attached directly to your house. What do you think of the idea of placing a greenhouse over the entryway to your cellar so that you can walk up the steps right into your greenhouse? Prefab aluminum framing makes this the idea DIY project for those who enjoy both growing flowers and building things. Most attachable greenhouses are not large, so you may want to fire up that Hothouse Flowers album on your iPod when you deal with the plants inside these greenhouses that range from five feet wide to 10 feet wide at most.
Those looking for less in the way of construction headaches should think about taking on the DIY building of a quonset hut-style greenhouse. Most of these types of greenhouses are made of galvanized steel are almost easy enough to assemble that Paris Hilton could do it whether she was allegedly doing drugs or not. Well, almost. They come with fiberglass doors and a forced air blower.
Regardless of the type of greenhouse you buy and the material from which it is made, the one thing you do want to keep in mind is that you need to look for durability. Wood may look more pleasing than vinyl, but keep in mind that insects think exactly the same thing. If you go with metal, keep in mind that galvanized metal holds up better and also looks better than painted metal. While wood is subject to rot and insects, metal is subject to rusting.
Place your greenhouse where you it will get the most efficient air circulation while also enjoying shelter from strong winds. You want a location where the sun doesn’t have to work too hard to get its rays through while also allowing enough shade so that you don’t wake up one day and have to decide on eating steamed vegetables for the next two weeks.