Greenhouse windows are a good investment to enjoy a more natural environment while cultivating flowers and herbs. However, there are several things to consider when choosing one.
Horticultural Glass retains heat and humidity but allows almost all light to pass through. It can be costly and break easily, but it is durable. Polycarbonate is less expensive but is less long-lasting and may be yellow.
Purchasing the right size of greenhouse windows is essential to ensure that your plants get enough sun and heat. Also, ensure the greenhouse can withstand local weather conditions such as wind and snow load.
Frame materials are another thing to consider. Fiberglass is a good insulator but can warp over time, while wood is an attractive option that adds curb appeal to your garden but requires regular repainting and maintenance.
Alternatively, you can opt for a durable polycarbonate sheeting that offers UV stability and comes with a protective film that you can leave in place or remove. This can be an excellent alternative to Glass and help protect your plants while allowing plenty of sunlight. Happybuy sells these sheets in a variety of sizes.
A simple window-style unit could work if you don’t want to invest in a complete greenhouse kit. This model has a durable frame and transparent polycarbonate sheets that let in optimum light and protect plants from critters and frosts.
Consider local weather factors and your landscaping plans, whether you choose Glass, acrylic, or polycarbonate. Horticultural Glass lets in the most light, and it’s durable and easily replaced if broken. Toughened Glass withstands more abuse and can handle snow, hail, and high winds. Acrylic blocks more heat and allows less light, but it can be costlier than Glass.
If you don’t mind scavenging, you can build your greenhouse using old windows from junkyards and vintage shops. Be sure to include a door and ventilation system.
Whether a seasoned gardener or an amateur, your greenhouse has several options. Some windows are glazed with clear polycarbonate to maximize light while protecting plants from critters and sudden frosts. Others feature a twin-wall roof that provides protection from UV rays and keeps the temperature more stable.
Some greenhouse window manufacturers offer customization for their products. For example, Solar Innovations can add accessories like a potting sink and ventilation windows. This way, they can accommodate different needs and preferences.
Moreover, the frame materials are essential, too. Glass is the traditional option, aesthetically pleasing and long-lasting, but it transmits heat very quickly. On the other hand, polycarbonate is less prone to breaking and has better-insulating properties.
Energy efficiency should be considered regardless of the style and frame material you choose. Many greenhouses are very “leaky,” allowing cold air to enter and warm air to escape, which drives up heating costs. Several manufacturers offer various upgrades and additions to help improve energy efficiency.
For example, many offer a polyethylene cover that can be used with any greenhouse to reduce thermal loss. The product provides UV protection and anti-condensation properties without reducing light transmission.
Additionally, many manufacturers offer shade screens that can be rolled up or down as needed. These screens help to block incoming sunlight during the winter and trap heat above the canopy zone in the summer, helping to reduce heat stress on plants.
Keeping the air moving in your greenhouse is essential to avoid fungus and promote plant health. Ventilation can also prevent overheating and heat stress, especially in summer.
Natural ventilation relies on the wind effect and heat buoyancy, allowing cool air to move in and hot air to escape. This can be achieved by combining side wall vents and roof or ridge ventilation. Motorized vent windows should be positioned strategically and maintained regularly to ensure optimal performance.
One option is to make your greenhouse using old window frames and other materials. You’ll need to scavenge at junkyards and vintage shops, but it can be a fun DIY project for the whole family. It’s also a great way to save money on a greenhouse.