Greenhouses are a must-have for any semi-serious or serious gardener, as they enable all-year-round growing and propagating and the option to grow more exotic plants, fruit and vegetables. You can insulate them and install heating, which will enable you to grow tender crops that would not survive a British winter, or even summer!
If you are considering investing in a greenhouse, you may well be wondering whether to go for plastic or wood. Plastic greenhouses are very popular, as they are easy to put up, easy to clean, can be very cost effective and come in a good variety of shapes and sizes; however, despite an initial higher cost, wooden greenhouses are well worth considering.
Usually made from western red cedar, wooden greenhouses are surprisingly tough and rot resistant, even in the somewhat damp British climate. If you regularly check for damage and paint them with a protective wood protector, you will get many, many years of use.
It is possible to replace plastic or aluminium panels, of course, but you can repair damaged wooden sections without having to remove large parts of the frame; in addition, wooden greenhouses will blend with your garden much more sympathetically than a plastic or aluminium frame. There is a natural ageing process to the wood, which can add to the charm of the appearance. Wood is more versatile to work with and you will find a greater range of shapes, styles and sizes from wooden greenhouse manufacturers, whether you opt for a traditional Victorian style or something much more contemporary.
Wood is naturally thermally insulating; therefore, wooden greenhouses are better at keeping temperatures regulated than their plastic counterparts. As any keen gardener knows, keeping temperatures regulated is very important for successful growing, and a big appeal of a wooden frame is that it is much easier to fix insulation to the wooden frame than to a plastic one. Insulation will also assist in keeping temperatures regulated, which is important for your plants and for you during those very cold months.
Customising your greenhouse is important to keen gardeners, which brings us to another point. It is much easier to put extra hooks and shelves up on wooden frames, which means you can customise the interior to your needs far more effectively than you can on an aluminium or plastic frame. Never underestimate the power of a well-placed shelf or hook!
Finally, wooden frames are more sustainable, especially if the wood comes from a certified sustainable source. Plastic frames often involve fossil fuels and carbon emissions in both the raw materials and during the production process; in addition, plastic frames will often end up in landfill, as they cannot be recycled.