When investing in a new greenhouse, it is important to remember that proper placement and positioning is essential for optimising its capabilities. Study your garden or space to first determine where you will place your greenhouse and the direction it will face. How well you place your greenhouse will determine growing success or failure.
A greenhouse needs sufficient levels of light. Try and position your greenhouse a little distance from trees, bushes and buildings that cast unwelcome shade, as this can encourage a build up of green algae, reducing the light. Overhanging trees will leave your greenhouse covered in leaves, or with sticky honeydew spilled all over it from insects above. Bird droppings can also leave dirty, grimy marks on your greenhouse, again reducing light levels.
If your greenhouse is too close to a building, it may receive a reduced level of light. Your greenhouse may be a lean to, so think carefully about its position to ensure it gets plenty of natural light.
A northern facing position for your greenhouse is usually not recommended, as light levels and temperatures can be low. Instead, try to find a southern or western facing position in your garden, to fully maximise the benefits of sunlight.
Place your greenhouse between yours and your neighbour’s house and the prevailing winds, to reduce windfall against the sides of the greenhouse, helping to maintain a more normal temperature inside during spring and autumn.
Find a level area to place your greenhouse. Not only does it make placement easier, it should help avoid any water from running through your greenhouse. The staging inside the greenhouse also needs to be horizontal, so a flat base is essential. Avoid placing it at the bottom of a slope, as cool air often sits in pockets at this lower level which could cause the temperature in your greenhouse to become colder.
For all year round crop growing, orientate your greenhouse to run east to west. This will maximise the light source during the winter months and assist in heating it up more quickly after chilly or frosty nights. If you only plan to grow crops in the summer, then a north to south position is preferable, providing equal amounts of sunlight to each side, which also helps to reduce the heat build up on the hottest summer days.
The area surrounding your greenhouse must have adequate and regular drainage. This will help you avoid cultivating sticky soil along the perimeter of your greenhouse at any time.
You may want your greenhouse to have both a water and electricity supply, to ensure your plants are kept moist and you can work when it is dark outside, or activate a pump or other electrical tools. You may even wish to have a gas supply connected if you wish to have a central heating source. While none of these services are essential to a working greenhouse, if you wish to use them, consider the placement of your greenhouse and how you intend to connect the water, electricity or gas supplies.