Owning a greenhouse is the ideal way to extend the growing season, making it a must-have garden building for any keen gardener. And there’s no need to keep your greenhouse basic, either, not when there’s so many innovative greenhouse accessories to help your plants thrive.
You might be surprised by some of the great greenhouse accessories available, so let’s take a look at 10 of the best right now…
10 Fantastic Greenhouse Accessories
1. Greenhouse Bases
A greenhouse must be assembled on a solid, level base to ensure it remains stable and in good working order. There’s nothing to stop you building your own greenhouse base or you can take the easy option and purchase one of our readymade plastic base kits instead.
These greenhouse bases come in all of the popular greenhouse sizes. They consist of a heavy-duty membrane together with a strong, durable interlocking plastic grid system, which is designed to be filled with pea gravel.
Simply choose the right-sized kit, lay the thick plastic membrane over the area to be covered, clip the grids together to form a rigid framework and spread pea gravel into each of the grids. This creates a highly effective greenhouse base with a great looking finish.
What’s more, these plastic greenhouse bases can easily be repositioned, whenever required.
(For a blog dedicated to building a greenhouse base, click here.)
2. Greenhouse Heating
Portable Gas Heaters
A greenhouse heater allows you to further extend the growing season. A suitable option is to purchase a portable gas cabinet heater.
One of our favourites is the Lifestyle Eden Greenhouse Heater in Green. This gas heater is encased in powder-coated steel housing, which is completely resistant to rust and makes for a smart, stylish appearance.
It is operated by Piezo ignition, thermostatically controlled and has attractive, long-lasting blue flame burners. The 2kw maximum heat output will heat anything up to a 60ft2 greenhouse.
Greenhouse Electric Heater with Digital Thermostat
If your greenhouse is connected to a power supply then you can use an electric heater instead.
This portable fan greenhouse heater has robust grey housing and stainless-steel heating elements, so looks great and is built to last. The digital thermostat ensures an efficient heating and cooling process, which allows you to set the temperature in advance for the benefit of your plants. It is able to heat a 15m area, making it ideal for most greenhouses.
3. Greenhouse Thermometers and Portable Weather Stations
A good greenhouse thermometer not only gives you a current temperature reading but also records the highest and lowest temperatures reached that day. This means you can be sure that your plants are enjoying the right growing conditions, even when you’re not around.
Portable weather stations are a clever alternative as they allow you to check the conditions in your greenhouse from the comfort of your favourite armchair.
4. Greenhouse Benches, Shelving and Staging
Benches, shelving and staging are essential to maximise the benefits of your greenhouse. Without them, all you have to work with is the floor area - and that’s not an efficient use of greenhouse space.
These greenhouse accessories bring plants up to an easily accessible height, making sowing trays of seeds, pricking out seedlings and potting on young plants so much easier. Pots, compost and trays can all be stored in the space underneath. What’s more, in winter, you could always use this room to overwinter begonias, fuchsia and pelargoniums.
Good staging should not only be robust but versatile and easy to manoeuvre too, as your greenhouse requirements will change over the course of the year. For instance, in spring, the staging will probably be groaning under the weight of seedling pots, but in summer it might need removing from the greenhouse to allow more floor space for cucumbers and peppers.
5. Greenhouse Insulation
During the colder months, you might need to insulate all or part of your greenhouse to avoid the frost killing tender plants.
Complete insulation involves wrapping the whole greenhouse up in bubble plastic or polycarbonate sheeting. It is easily done but can be expensive. Remember that for the benefit of your plants and to prevent fungal spores from developing, your greenhouse will still need some ventilation. Also remember to ensure that the insulating material is kept well away from greenhouse heaters.
Chances are that your greenhouse will only be partially full in winter, in which case you only need to insulate a section of the greenhouse. Choose the area furthest from the door, to avoid unnecessary draughts of cold air, and group all of your vulnerable plants together there.
In spring, less insulation is required. Keep propagator covers handy, along with a few sheets of newspaper. One sheet placed over a tray of seedlings at night will keep off the frost – just be sure to remove it next morning.
6. Greenhouse Shading
Shading plays a key part in protecting your plants from oppressive heat.
In summer, temperatures in a greenhouse will rocket on a sunny day. Seedlings can be scorched, especially if you have sprinkled water on the leaves as the droplets intensify the sun's rays. Ways to combat this include moving trays away from windows or covering them with a sheet of newspaper when the sun is at its most intense.
Alternatively, whole panels, sides or even complete greenhouses can be covered by shading paint. This is easy to apply, highly effective, and easy to remove too. An opaque polycarbonate panel, cut to size and fitted on the inside of the greenhouse, is another way to shade a large section of the greenhouse. This also works well in lowering greenhouse temperatures.
Yet another option is roller blinds. They look great and can be easily operated by a thermostat, but bear in mind that they do cost a few quid.
Your choice will obviously be influenced by your budget and how much you are growing in your greenhouse.
7. Greenhouse Ventilation
Your new greenhouse may well come fitted with a vent(s) and/ or louvre window(s), while some models allow you to purchase them as optional extras. Always make full use of these greenhouse accessories to optimise growing conditions.
Automatic window openers fit onto the opening windows of a greenhouse. As the temperature in the greenhouse rises and falls, the arm opens and closes the window accordingly. If you’re out for the day, automatic window openers give you the peace of mind that your greenhouse plants are being well looked after.
8. Water Butts and Tanks
A water tank in a greenhouse has two useful functions. Firstly, the water it provides is slightly warmer than tap water, and this makes it less of a shock to your plants. Secondly, the slight evaporation of the water will raise humidity and reduce water loss from the plants’ leaves.
Obviously, it depends on how big your greenhouse is, but even a small tank tucked into a corner, big enough to dip a watering can into, is a great addition to a greenhouse. But don’t let it take up too much valuable growing room!
An external water butt is a way around this. Together with greenhouse guttering, it allows you to harvest rainwater for the benefit of your plants.
9. Greenhouse Guttering
Some greenhouses will come with integral guttering to connect to your water butt. If not, why not purchase a guttering kit?
We recommend Hall’s Rainsaver Guttering, which is available in all of the popular greenhouse sizes, very easy to install and comes with everything required to connect it to a water butt.
10. Trellising Kits
Climbing plants are one of the finest sights in a garden and there will be times when your young climbers need to be in the greenhouse. A trellising kit is ideal for this purpose.
Other Great Greenhouse Accessories
Metal greenhouse bases, glazing upgrades, louvre windows and smart finials are just some of the other optional upgrades available with many of our greenhouses. Be sure to check the accessories tab on the relevant greenhouse’s product page to find out exactly what you can buy.
Greenhouses for Sale
Here at Shedstore, we stock an extensive range of greenhouses, sourced from all of the leading manufacturers. We also sell a number of essential greenhouse accessories.
So, if you’re ready to extend the growing season and enjoy the benefits of homegrown produce, or if you now want to customise your existing glasshouse, be sure to view our fantastic range of greenhouses for sale.