As summer approaches, gardeners feel the need to get out and start making preparations for the growing season ahead. It’s an exciting time, planning kitchen gardens and greenhouse goodies. But nothing happens by chance. Some preparation ahead of the main growing season will get you off to the best start.
Check the Vents and Windows
Over winter, all sorts of damage can creep into greenhouses that are left to themselves. Before you can rely on your greenhouse during the summer, you need to do a little checking and repairing where necessary. One of the things you’ll need during the summer months is adequate ventilation, as greenhouses can get very hot during cloudless sunny days. Having freely opening windows and vents will allow a breeze to circulate around the greenhouse plants, and it also allows pollinating insects inside to do their vital job too. If your windows are jammed or squeaky, or your vents fall closed instead of staying open, do the necessary work now in spring to make sure everything is working properly when it needs to.
Organise Your Propagators and Decide on Seeds
Now is a good time to start thinking how you’ll actually use the greenhouse during the summer. With the chance of frosts still around until a little later in the year, you can start off seeds indoors to get them going before planting on in the greenhouse. But before you can move them into the greenhouse, you should make sure you have their spaces allocated. Check your staging to make sure everything is still firm and secure. Decide where you’ll position larger plants such as tomatoes or cucumbers, and mark out the areas in a greenhouse floor plan if this will help you remember.
Bring in Grow Bags or Compost
Prepare your soil ready for the planting that will come in the summer. If you have actual beds in the greenhouse – for instance, if it’s over soil rather than being on a hard surface – you may need to do some soil conditioning. If you’re bringing in grow bags, get them early so you can put them in position to earmark their spaces. This will help you decide on the positioning of smaller plants.
Check Your Water Supply
Greenhouse plants need more water than those planted out in the garden. Don’t forget that they’re dependent on you for all their watering and feeding, since they have a roof over their heads. Your garden plants will get a drink when it rains, but your greenhouse plants will still be parched. Keep a watering can full of water in the greenhouse all the time, as it’s better to give plants water that’s at the same temperature as their surroundings to avoid shock. Having a water butt and collecting rainwater is a good idea too, and you can install greenhouse guttering to collect the water that runs off the roof.
Is your greenhouse ready? Taking care of these steps will make sure your greenhouse is well prepared and ready to go.