There is no better time to build a backyard or patio greenhouse than right now. Filled with excitement at the prospect of growing healthy fruits, vegetables, and decorative plants all year long, clients are increasingly asking their landscape designers for gorgeous greenhouses. From whimsical potting shed styles to refined conservatories, custom greenhouses can be made to fit any space or style. If this seems like an answer to your gardening prayers, read on as we reveal the joy a small yet envy-inducing greenhouse can bring.
A Victorian greenhouse is typically made of glass which promotes the flow of natural light while creating a micro-climate conducive to the cultivation of any number of plants and trees, particularly tropical varieties. Luxurious Victorian models are made with cold frames of steel or timber and often feature walk-out patios and enough space to dine with friends among the fruit trees. Bespoke Victorian lodges, like those available through Hartley Botanic, may be small, but they are tailor-made for your garden space. Walk-out porches are simple add-ons to the design. The narrower glass panes of safety glass get high marks for durability – an important element to consider if you live in a region that experiences frequent storms.
Small Glass Greenhouses
Not surprisingly, magazines like Southern Living cannot stop raving about the advantages of building greenhouses on patios, in gardens, or on terraces. Whether you commission a small glass model made of vintage windows or set out to build yourself one using their plans, Southern Living believes that your investment will be worth the money and effort. Among the reasons that the Magazine is such a fan is that a greenhouse allows you to “start seeds earlier and control their temperature, which makes it possible to grow thriving plants that don’t usually flourish in the South, like citrus and orchids.” Using vintage windows grants you the ability to control individual panes to guide the flow of air where it is needed most. Depending on the number of windows used, you can create a small, cozy space for letting your seedlings thrive or a spacious greenhouse that can be filled with racks of plants and a bistro table and chairs, perfect for sipping a glass of wine amongst the greenery.
Also known as an “Italian Style Greenhouse,” a conservatory greenhouse features tempered security glass surrounded by ornate ironwork. Crafted by companies like Villa Dorica, Aphrodite models can feature tiled flooring, double-paned windows, and enough space to meet all of your gardening needs. This elegant greenhouse can also offer thermal insulation, allowing you to grow plants in even the harshest of winters. You’ll never have to worry about a sudden frost damaging your plants and derailing your early spring planting efforts. Customized here with a brilliant chandelier, conservatory models can also easily double as elegant entertainment spaces for garden parties, refined dinner engagements, or romantic date nights.
Guest House Greenhouses
Do you have a back garden with an ideal spot for a secret retreat under the trees? Guest house greenhouses blend the timeless style of a sustainable wood and glass model with the elegance of a small hideaway. One of Better Homes & Gardens’ favorite greenhouses boasts an outdoor room large enough for a cozy day bed, pretty shelving, stunning pots for herbs and greenery, and an attached outdoor shower. Plans for complete bathrooms, mini-kitchens, and loft spaces can all be added as you customize this charming, character-forward guest house greenhouse with “materials that suit your personality, your yard, and your climate.”
Potting Shed Greenhouses
If you prefer a greenhouse that provides more privacy and wood-shingled charm, you might want to consider designing your own potting shed greenhouse, another favorite of the team at Better Homes & Gardens. As the Magazine raves, “south-facing windows bathe the interior of the structure in light for potting projects (and plant propagation),” and the “open front porch makes the shed look like a tiny house.” Air flows through the greenhouse shed via easy-to-open doors and windows, but the space is also comfortably protected from the elements. Adding a climate control system, particularly in areas of the country that experience long periods of extreme weather, would be relatively simple with this picturesque yet functional design.
Apartment Terrace Greenhouses
Envy-inducing greenhouses are not just for properties with extensive back gardens. Urban dwellers can enjoy the benefits too. In fact, small greenhouses are an in-demand feature for apartment terraces, as those living in cities are also eager to embrace the victory gardening movement. Even the editors of Martha Stewart Living are huge fans of the mini-greenhouse trend, as they “come in all shapes, sizes and price points, and run the gambit from fuss-free and functional, to whimsical and ornamental,” making them flexible enough to appeal to any design aesthetic. If your terrace benefits from ample sun, and you yearn to put your green thumb to the test, it may be time to invest in a beautiful, small greenhouse.
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