Good to know before you select your greenhouse
When investing in a greenhouse, it is important to base your decision on what you intend to use it for. If you have never bought a greenhouse before, identifying your needs can be difficult and, in this event, our best advice is to buy as big a greenhouse as your garden permits.
Because we have never heard a customer complain about buying a greenhouse that was too big. This does not mean that you will not be pleased with a small greenhouse, because you definitely will. This just means that you are likely to become very fond of greenhouse gardening and wish you had space for more.
All Juliana greenhouse models have tall sides and high roof ridges, which is important because this provides a spacious greenhouse with room for people and plants. It is nice to have room for a chair and small table in your little “oasis” where you can enjoy a cup of coffee and read the newspaper.
Even in early spring, it only takes a little sunshine to make the greenhouse a splendid place to sit and soak up the wonderful light and warmth.
Although there is no clear-cut answer, here, too, you need to consider what you intend to use the greenhouse for. If the greenhouse will solely be used to lengthen and optimise the growing season, you will benefit from some of the tips provided below.
If you also want to be able to enjoy relaxing in your greenhouse, then it is a good idea to place it near your patio or the most frequently-used part of your garden. This way, the greenhouse will become a natural part of your everyday life, and you will enjoy it the most. Whether to align it on a north–south or east–west axis depends on several factors. For instance, how early in the year you want to begin, whether you have glass or polycarbonate glazing, and the plants you want to grow. The guidelines below are only suggestions, as there are as many opinions on this topic as there are garden owners, but the guidelines are particularly good if you are a first-time buyer.
The north–south axis is ideal for greenhouses glazed with glass. When the sun rises in the east, your greenhouse will heat up quickly. When the sun is due south at noon, the narrowest side faces the sun, which prevents overheating. And when the sun sets in the west, the greenhouse soaks in the last warming rays of sunshine.
The east–west axis position is ideal if you want to get off to an early start in spring and if you have decided on a greenhouse glazed with polycarbonate. In early spring, most sunlight comes from the south-east to the south-west, and positioning the long side of the greenhouse southwards provides maximum sunlight for your plants. This is particularly important for a greenhouse glazed with polycarbonate, because its growing season can be longer than if it was on a north-south axis.
TIP: PROVIDE SHELTER.
As wind has a cooling effect on a greenhouse, reduce this effect by sheltering it with a hedge or fence. Also, make sure not to position the greenhouse near big trees. They will cast shadows on the greenhouse, and falling branches can damage glass and frames.
When choosing the type of glazing for your greenhouse, there are two basic choices: clear glass or semi-transparent polycarbonate sheets. One benefit of polycarbonate is the thermal insulation effect created by air ducts in the sheets, which protects against frost at the beginning and end of the season.
Polycarbonate also diffuses light, which reduces the need for shading. Most Juliana models are available with 6 mm and 10 mm polycarbonate sheets. Nowadays, glass is the most widely used glazing by far, primarily for aesthetic reasons. Glass is available as either traditionally sectioned greenhouse glass or as full-length toughened glass.
The last-mentioned is far and away the most elegant and is also much stronger than ordinary glass. Also, on impact, toughened glass shatters into tiny pieces, whereas ordinary glass breaks into large shards, with a higher risk of getting cut.
It is important to place your greenhouse on a strong, stable base firmly anchored in the ground. Many insurance companies will only provide storm loss insurance if the greenhouse is attached to a base cast in concrete.
We advise you to talk with your insurance company about what type of base-and-greenhouse set-up your insurance covers to make sure you are properly insured in the event of storm loss/damage. You can choose to cast a base completely in concrete, which is very demanding. It is also possible to make a base out of pressure-treated wood.
We always recommend that you buy an original Juliana base, comprising precisely pre-cut 12-cm-high galvanised steel frames. The base sections are easy to assemble on the anchor legs included with the base. Not only is this type of base sufficiently anchored, but it is also easy to make. A base-assembly guide is available under Help & Support.