Owning a greenhouse is bliss, greenhouse owners know what I mean. We can grow our desired vegies, fruits and bedding plants without the seasonal limitations. BUT
Everything has its own pros and cons, the same goes for greenhouses.
Is Greenhouse the right fit for you?
Well yes, it all depends on how well we plan and research to utilize and maintain the greenhouse before incorporating it, in our lifestyle. Growing homegrown veggies and fruits is not a bad idea but, a lot of careful consideration, investment and research is needed to make it a success.
Let us have deep insight into the factors that make our greenhouses fail and why it might not be the right fit for your gardening needs. The three major drawbacks of a greenhouse include the high initial cost, dealing with pests, and maintenance of the Greenhouse.
1. High Installment Cost of Greenhouses
Overall, if you consider building your greenhouse then you should be ready for investing in a good, strong and efficient greenhouse design. This will definitely cost you money but if you want to go with a cheaper alternative then you should know that!
Cheaper costs you less profit!
Because you will be spending more and more money on upgrading and maintaining your greenhouse.
If you want to have an efficient working greenhouse, you need to invest in good quality kits and other materials that are required for the greenhouse system. Because it will help you grow your plants in a controlled environment and will have better results, rather than buying cheaper greenhouse system supplies.
Let us see, how?
If you buy a cheap film plastics thinking it will cost less and it will do the work of heating the inside environment for your desired plants to grow. But in the long run, it is not a good idea. So it is better to buy good plastics films that have a good warranty. Furthermore, you can go with even a much better alternative and buy heat resistive glass windows with longer durability and indefinite life span but they are more expensive.
Rather than investing in a product with one benefit and less profit, you should go for better options. Like the one, I shared above.
2. High Heating Costs of Greenhouses
Depending on the choice of plant and the condition it requires (like the biggest challenge in our way is to achieve maximum climate control), greenhouses are usually heated for controlling the inside temperature. Therefore, you will be spending money to control your greenhouse environment.
You will have to provide the recommended temperature to your greenhouse plants and to achieve the above-mentioned goal and you will need to install electric or gas heaters, which will help our plants to grow but causes a rise in bills.
But you can always decrease the heating bills by making your greenhouse structure more efficient (choosing a glazing material for your greenhouse which passes the light but at the same time traps the heat inside). But, definitely, such glazing materials are costly.
Another smart way to keep your greenhouse temperature high is to add thermal mass into the greenhouse. such as water drums, rocks, and concrete. The thermal mass will absorb the heat from the sun and will radiate this heat when it’s cold outside and as a result, it will require less heating and you will save some money.
3. Ventilation Costs of Greenhouses
If you are planting in a greenhouse only when it is cold outside then you don’t need to install greenhouse ventilation. However, if you are planning to grow in summers as well, you should definitely consider spending some money on installing ventilation systems for your greenhouse.
Most of the greenhouse hobbyists provide vents and windows in the greenhouse and they allow the trapped hot hair to flow out of the greenhouse in order to keep the greenhouse cool in summer. However, if the greenhouse is comparatively large or the vents are not large enough then you will need to install blowers to remove the hot air out of the greenhouse.
If this is your case, then you will be consuming electricity for running the ventilation systems of your greenhouse, which will cost you money.
4. Pests Control in Greenhouse
We all have come across little creepy 4 to 6 appendages creature’s arthropods also known as insects. Whether, I am inside my home, garden or greenhouse I see them everywhere. No matter how much controlled-conditions are provided inside the greenhouse. Some plants do carry and spread pests like aphids, whiteflies and other insect species to other plants in the vicinity. As a result, they cause damage to most of the veggies and fruits that are grown inside.
If your greenhouse plants are carried over by pests then you can go the inorganic route and employ chemical fertilizers onto your plants, but there are also some organic practices ( like using neem and plant therapy oils or carrier oils) that you can follow to control greenhouse pests. Follow this article for further details on greenhouse pest control.
Another way to control pests in your greenhouse is by introducing predator insect species (like ladybirds) in your greenhouse. These beneficial insects will make your greenhouse even more colorful and exciting and will also get rid of many pests without damaging your precious plants. To know more about predator insect species and their predator mechanism, you all have to read our upcoming blog.
Among all of the other greenhouse pests, Whiteflies irritates me the most. Why I am emphasizing on Greenhouse Whiteflies?
These are the primary pests affecting over and above 250 plant species and are basically plant sap feeders. Most of the pesticides don’t work on this class of bugs because they have seven life stages. You will be thinking about what these life stages have to do with pesticides. The life stage of any insect includes the eggs, pupae, nymphs and the adult stage, so we have to kill the insect before it is fully grown. Let us see how.
Like we mentioned home-based products like Neem and plant therapy oils will kill the immature stage of whiteflies. A class of insecticide namely pyrethroid will control the adult stage.
Not only insects cause problems but the humid environment that we have built for our plants favors plant diseases like fungus. To control the humidity we again need a proper ventilation system for greenhouses.
5: Lack of pollination
Greenhouse pollination is a major problem because many fruits and vegetables like tomatoes need to be pollinated. The greenhouse is an enclosed environment therefore; natural pollinators such as butterflies, bees, and other insects cannot access the greenhouse plant.
So, you will have to pollinate your plants by tapping them daily. This is quite labor-intensive and time-consuming work, but if you can spare some time in your daily schedule you can easily achieve it. On the other hand, you can buy battery operated pollination tools that will do this job for you, but you still have to operate the device to pollinate your greenhouse flowers.
Another, natural remedy to cope with this problem is to introduce bumblebee hives into your greenhouse. The bumblebees will do the task of pollination for you, so you don’t have to worry about it. But you should provide prepackage nectar to your bumblebees as a supplementary food and further, you should then limit the use of pesticides inside your greenhouse because they are also harmful to your bees.
I am pretty much sure this article might have helped you in one way or the other. So if you are planning to make your own greenhouse all these things you should consider.