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Buying a Greenhouse (5)

Does a Greenhouse need full sun in the UK?

When building a Greenhouse in the UK, generally it should receive around six hours of sunlight a day. Sunny spots in gardens or patios are therefore the best location. This is especially important during winter when the UK has fewer daylight hours.


However, depending on what you plan to grow in your Greenhouse, a partial shade spot may also be suitable. Shade-loving plants or areas with higher altitudes will cope without as much sunlight.


A well-lit location will ensure that your plants benefit from optimum growing conditions, as the UK Greenhouse will be adequately heated.

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What architectural style is the Glasshouse?

Greenhouses and Glasshouses can come in a range of architectural styles.

Victorian Glasshouses

Many people recognise the traditional Victorian Glasshouse as one of the first and finest examples of Greenhouse growing. Typically grand in style, the Greenhouse was originally primarily used by the rich and wealthy of that period. Glass was an expensive material, so it became synonymous with privilege and status. Elaborate glass buildings were designed and created by the Victorians, as a place not only to grow their exotic plants but also to take refuge and relax.

Much of today’s modern Greenhouses draw inspiration from the Victorian style, incorporating new designs for a bespoke and eye-catching Glasshouse.

Modern Greenhouses

As the minimalist style grew in popularity, this too transferred onto the designs of Greenhouses. Hartley Botanic boasts a range of sleek and modern Greenhouses that will fit perfectly into any garden. Combining contemporary styles with concealed engineering, the end result is aesthetically pleasing a subtle nod to the Victorian timber-framed roots.

Bespoke Greenhouses

Whatever your architectural vision for a bespoke Glasshouse, Hartley Botanic is here to help. One popular style is to incorporate a dwarf wall in the Greenhouse design. This allows the structure to blend with your current home, matching the bricks of the exterior walls.

For homes with smaller outdoor spaces, lean-to Greenhouses are a fantastic alternative. They make use of a current exterior wall, yet still feature the classic and eye-catching framing of a full Greenhouse.

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What is better for a Greenhouse - plastic or glass?

Glass is the strongest of all Greenhouse materials, making it a popular choice over plastic Greenhouses.


Glass Greenhouses typically have a more magnificent appearance. The eye-catching designs make them the centre of any garden and the clarity of the glass gives the feeling of being outdoors. This also means that glass Greenhouses transmit the lightest – nearly 100% – retaining this quality for many years when properly taken care of.


Their durability and permanence mean that glass Greenhouses often add value to your home or residence.

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Can a Greenhouse have brick walls?

While a Greenhouse cannot have entirely brick walls, dwarf walls can be advantageous. These small walls are not only eye-catching in their design, but they also provide greater insulation for your plants.


Lean-to Greenhouses also utilise an external wall – usually brick – for one of their sides. Growers often train their plants to grow up these brick walls.

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Why have a dwarf wall in a Greenhouse?

Many growers opt for a dwarf wall when choosing their Hartley Botanic Greenhouse.


The advantages of having a dwarf wall in a Greenhouse are both aesthetic and functional. In new build homes in particular, the colour of the brick can be matched to materials used in the house.


Dwarf wall Greenhouses also provide greater insulation for your plants, protecting them from colder weather, and a robust, sturdy foundation.

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Delivery (5)

Can you deliver abroad?

We deliver and install Glasshouses and Greenhouses all over the world. In fact, we have delivered and installed in over 20 Countries in the past two years. We welcome enquiries, which would usually be dealt with by our UK Sales team.

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Do you deliver greenhouses to France?

We do deliver and install in France, along with many other parts of the world. We suggest the client prepares the necessary building works, from a detailed plan we would provide at point of order. We do need to take site measurements, as we provide the plans for the clients contractor to follow. We would manufacture the structure (to one of our standard sizes, or to the client’s preferred bespoke sizes), deliver it to the site, and then send our assembly team to the site to complete the installation. If we can assist with anything further please don’t hesitate to get back in touch.

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Greenhouse Maintenance (5)

When should you remove bubble wrap from a greenhouse?

The decision to remove the bubble wrap from your greenhouse is a personal one that is influenced by the weather, the temperature inside, and the condition of the plants.


Bubble wrap acts as insulation and is therefore ideal for keeping heat in the greenhouse during the colder seasons to grow winter vegetables. During the warmer months, however, the insulation may cause an imbalance in the humidity inside your greenhouse, causing plants to rot or wilt.


Another reason to remove bubble wrap from your greenhouse is when you need to clean it. By removing the wrap, you will be able to thoroughly clean all of the corners as well as any shelves or staging you may have.

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How do you build a greenhouse misting system?

Greenhouse misting systems are a perfect way to care for your plants. Although they can be bought, you always have the option to build one yourself.


While you don’t need many materials to create a misting system, you do need to ensure you have a plan before going into the building stages.


Here are some top tips on building a greenhouse misting system for a small greenhouse.

  • Make sure all your parts fit together and check the measurements. You don’t want to reach the installation stage to find out your parts don’t fit.
  • Focus on your water source. Check that a tube adaptor will fit, that the pressure control is appropriate and how far you’ll place the tap from your greenhouse.
  • Create the misting system based on what plants you are growing and the climate.
  • Having a misting system is not a substitute for having good ventilation. Before you create a misting system, ensure you have strong ventilation.


To build a small greenhouse misting system, you first need to place a filter (ideally mesh) onto the tap. Once you’ve screwed the adapter onto the tap, push the “barbed” end into the tube and make sure it fits properly.


Then, you need to run tubing from the tap along your greenhouse or shelving. It is best to attach a few zip ties on the way to keep everything in place. When this is done, add your end cap to the end of your water supply tubing.


Wherever you’re hoping to insert a nozzle, cut the tubing, insert the compression fittings you have chosen and press in a nozzle at the bottom of each compression fitting.


Finally, you’re ready to turn on the water. You must turn the water on slowly to ensure you have the correct water pressure for the nozzles.

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How do you maintain a small greenhouse?

A small greenhouse is an exciting addition to any garden, but maintenance should be done regularly to create the perfect environment for whatever you choose to grow.


By cleaning, disinfecting and sweeping your greenhouse, you are sure to keep pests away and have a controlled area. It is also important to deal with any weeds and remove any plants that develop diseases, as they can be transferred around your greenhouse very easily.


One of the best ways to maintain your small greenhouse is by undertaking daily observations. This way, you can be on the lookout for any pests or see any areas that need an urgent clean.

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How much ventilation does a small Greenhouse need?

Ventilation is crucial to controlling the temperature and managing humidity levels inside your small Greenhouse. By having a good amount of Greenhouse ventilation, you provide your plants with the nourishment they require to survive.


The easiest way to ventilate small or mini Greenhouses is by having roof or side vents that provide regular cooling air changes throughout. This is known as natural ventilation.


Mechanical ventilation involves using fans or other devices to ensure the air is kept circulating throughout your Greenhouse.


The standard rule is, for every 50 sq ft of floor area, you should aim to have ten sq ft of ventilation for your small or mini Greenhouse, whatever your method of choice.

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How much does it cost to maintain a greenhouse?

Multiple variables impact the cost of greenhouse maintenance, such as water, heating, and lights.

The costs to maintain a greenhouse will vary depending on the climate where your greenhouse is located, the size of it, and the materials, for example, aluminium will only require cleaning.

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Heating a Greenhouse (5)

Do small Greenhouses work in winter?

A small Greenhouse is a fantastic way to keep your plants protected during winter. Shield from frost and the cold elements and ensure optimum growing conditions are maintained.


An unheated small and mini Greenhouses allows you to grow hardy winter vegetables, as well as begin propagating. In winter, small Greenhouses work by trapping as much light as possible from the sun during the day and converting it into thermal energy to keep the inside warm.


If you need some extra insulation over winter, consider bubble wrapping your small Greenhouse. This is the most cost-efficient way of heating a Greenhouse, however other artificial methods (such as electric heaters) are also available.

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Will a small Greenhouse keep plants from freezing?

Small Greenhouses are fantastic insulators, meaning they will keep your plants from freezing during winter.


The glass panels of a small Greenhouse work by letting in as much light as possible from the sun, trapping its thermal energy. Objects inside the Greenhouse – such as plants and soil – are heated, and remain warm and protected from the elements.


The size of the Greenhouse doesn’t matter either. They all work in an identical manner, so even mini Greenhouses will be efficient at keeping your plants from freezing. Proper insulation is key to maintaining healthy plant growth, especially during cold weather.

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Do mini Greenhouses protect from frost?

Mini-Greenhouses are great protectors against frost during winter. Many growers use Greenhouses to protect their plants from the elements over the colder months, including frost and other harsh conditions.


Temperatures are typically around five degrees higher inside a mini-Greenhouse, keeping your plants from freezing.


You may want to consider further artificial ways of heating your mini-Greenhouse, particularly during an extreme winter or if you have plants that prefer a warmer climate.

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Why should you put bubble wrap in a greenhouse?

Gardeners add bubble wrap to their greenhouses primarily to add another layer of insulation. Bubble wrap retains any valuable heat from the day, which can be used to protect against frost at night.


It is important to remember, however, that bubble wrap retains heat. So, during the warmer months, it is critical to monitor the conditions inside your greenhouse to avoid any plants wilting.

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How do you heat a small greenhouse?

There are a few methods you can use when it comes to heating a small greenhouse.


For example, having a controlled electric heater is a good option. However, you would need to ensure your greenhouse has mains electricity to power it.


As well as electric options, there are more cost-efficient methods such as heat sinks and having proper insulation. By effectively insulating your greenhouse, you can reduce the loss of any heat and improve the general structure.

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Preparing the Site (5)

Can I put a Greenhouse on my balcony?

If you’re limited on outdoor space and want to place a Greenhouse on your balcony, the Hartley Botanic Patio Glasshouse is a great option.


The patio Glasshouse uses an already existing external wall as one of its sides. The narrow design makes it perfect for balconies, where larger Greenhouses may not fit.


Patio Glasshouses work by trapping heat from the sun and turning it into thermal energy, keeping your plants warm and protected from any external elements. During summer, hinged top panes and double sliding doors ensure that the patio Greenhouse is kept well ventilated.


The compact design maximises the available growth area without compromising on quality. Patio Greenhouses can be maneuvered into smaller spaces, ideal for balcony growers.

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Why have a dwarf wall in a Greenhouse?

Many growers opt for a dwarf wall when choosing their Hartley Botanic Greenhouse.


The advantages of having a dwarf wall in a Greenhouse are both aesthetic and functional. In new build homes in particular, the colour of the brick can be matched to materials used in the house.


Dwarf wall Greenhouses also provide greater insulation for your plants, protecting them from colder weather, and a robust, sturdy foundation.

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Can you put a Greenhouse on bricks?

For large Greenhouses, brick bases are often preferred, as the brick provides a neater edge for the Greenhouse to lip over and a strong base on which it can be secured.


You should consult a good local builder when planning your large Greenhouse base. We will provide brick base plans to work to.

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What is the best position for a glasshouse, what do I need to consider?

The best position for a greenhouse is in as much sunlight as possible during all seasons of the year. One of our most important greenhouse position tips is to avoid locating your greenhouse in the shadow of tall trees, boundary fences or walls as these will obstruct light.


For lean-to greenhouses placed against a wall, a south-facing position is ideal. For stand-alone structures, the ridge along the top of the greenhouse should ideally run from East to West, this will allow the sun to run along its longest side during the day. Other elemental considerations include a location to avoid prevailing winds to reduce unnecessary cooling and choosing a site which is not shaded, but equally not too exposed to the cold. If possible, choose an area which is easily accessible from the property allowing you to ‘pop-in’ to the greenhouse regularly.


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How do I decide where to site my new greenhouse?

When deciding where to place a greenhouse, basic considerations are good light and shelter from strong winds. Ensure the ground drains easily and is level. If water and power services will be required, make sure these are laid on prior to the arrival of the greenhouse, or make schedule to lay them on at a later date.


All too often greenhouses are relegated to neglected corners of the garden, whereas to be used effectively, the distance from the property should be minimised, so you can simply “pop into the greenhouse” easily. Make sure to have the door closest to the house if possible. Running the ridge “east to west” is recommended to allow maximum light into the greenhouse

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Erecting a Greenhouse (5)

How do you make a lean-to Greenhouse?

A lean-to Greenhouse is built using an already existing external wall as one of its edges. This is usually the outside wall of a home, conservatory, or other solid building.


The structure is built leaning against the wall, giving the lean-to Greenhouse its name. Glass panels form the rest of the Greenhouse, the transparent elements allowing light and thermal energy to be produced.


Dwarf walls made out of brick can also be added as a feature, to match the structure with the existing building.


Depending on the style of lean-to Greenhouse, you can opt for sliding or fold-out doors as entrances. Hinge windows for ventilation can also be added.


Many growers train their plants to grow up the brick wall, making full use of the lean-to Greenhouse area.

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Can I build my greenhouse myself?

Some of our smaller greenhouses can be assembled by the customer, however, some Victorian glasshouses are more complex. 

If you are looking for advice on how to build a Victorian style greenhouse, the Hartley Botanic team will assemble it to a high standard, and the cost of this is included in the greenhouse pride.

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How do you build a brick base Greenhouse?

Once your deposit on your Hartley Botanic Greenhouse is placed, we will provide the drawings for your builder to construct your brick base Greenhouse.

In general, brick based Greenhouses are preferred by our growers as they offer a more robust foundation with a neater finish. The Greenhouse is placed over the brick and tightly secured.

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When is the best time of year to build a greenhouse?

The optimum time to build a new greenhouse would be either at the beginning or end of the growing season. Orders placed late in the year or early in the year between November and March will enable you to get your new greenhouse up and running for the start of the growing season. However there is really no reason why you shouldn’t put a new greenhouse in at any time which suits you and your circumstances.”

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Existing Hartleys (5)

How can I maximise space in a small greenhouse?

If you’ve opted for a small greenhouse, there are plenty of ways you can maximise your space to have the best growing experience possible.


To begin with, every bit of space counts, so make sure you’re aware of how much area you have available for you to use.


If you’re looking to optimise your space, consider adding greenhouse accessories. Whether it be high level shelving or aluminium staging and shelving, you immediately gain space to pot your favourite plants.


Another main way to maximise your space in small greenhouses is to create a schedule and plan ahead. If it’s possible, focus on having your greenhouse at full capacity as often as you can. By doing this, you know when things will be fully grown and when you can add more plants.

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How can I open a stuck greenhouse lock?

If the lock was last used some time ago the bolt may have become stuck due to moisture , debris, corrosion etc. We would suggest a penetrating / water dis-placing oil (WD40 or similar) applied liberally into the lock mechanism. This should release the lock.

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Hi we have just moved into our house and it has an 8' wisley greenhouse with an inward opening door, is it possible to change this to one that either opens outwards or slides as it takes over a lot of the internal space?

It would be helpful to know the age of the greenhouse before we could give an answer to this question In the first instance we would need to talk with you and possibily request a photograph of the greenhouse to see if we could assist.

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Moving a Hartley (2)

I have two questions, firstly I am moving to Scotland in the future and there is a hartley greenhouse that needs to be resited and the seals have shrunk and would need replacing .The glasshouse is approx. 15/8ft. and has a brick base.Would you know which model from this brief description? It is quite old, but in reasonable order and seems to be the style favoured in this area. The second query is related to me getting a quote from an aluminium conservatory company for a conservatory approx. 5mtrx3mtr, but the quote was well out of my budget and I wondered if another option would be a lean to glasshouse but there are no prices shown and I need to have some idea in order to know if this is an option.

We wouldn’t unfortunately know the model from the brief description, however if you could provide photographs this would help?

Second query answer – If you could give us an idea of size required for the lean to greenhouse, we would be more than happy to provide an estimated cost for you. Please contact us for more information.

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