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Year-Round Greenhouse Growing: Top Tips for Colder Months

Deny it as they might, most landscapers and gardeners in general don’t exactly look forward to the winter. Which is easy to understand, given the way in which the winter weather in the UK isn’t exactly kind to landscapers or gardeners at the best of times.

But here’s the thing – get it right with greenhouse growing and there’s nothing to say you can’t continue to produce superior plants all year-round. It might not be easy, but it’s not as if most landscapers expect an easy ride – especially during the winter. Regardless of how unpredictable the weather may be, there’s plenty you can do to improve your chances of succeeding with the greenhouse crops of your choosing.

So for those landscapers and gardeners that are unwilling to let the winter weather slow them down, here’s a brief rundown of a few essential tips for year-round greenhouse growing:

1. Fine-Tune Your Greenhouse

First and foremost, you’ll need to stop regarding your greenhouse as little more than a basic barrier to protect your plants from the elements. Quite the opposite, your greenhouse needs to be no less than a finely tuned machine if you’re going to make it work in your favour throughout the winter. Which means checking for the tiniest holes, gaps, leaks and so on – anything that could potentially wreak havoc with the conditions inside. Carry out a full inspection of the integrity of your greenhouse’s structure and ensure it’s up to the job. If not, you’re already fighting a losing battle.

2. Accept the Inevitable

One of the biggest mistakes far too many landscapers make is that of (for some reason) acting completely surprised and baffled when the mercury dips below zero. Despite the fact that each and every year like clockwork, the UK faces the kinds of cold snaps that are borderline arctic in their severity. Turning a blind eye to such things and expecting to get away without perishing temperatures really isn’t the way to go. Sooner or later, things are going to get very, VERY cold outside…and you need to be prepared. Which is precisely where the key to success lies – preparation – rather than attempting to deal with things at the last minute.

3. Accurate Readings

Taking accurate readings in a greenhouse doesn’t mean simply positioning a 99p to monitor in one corner and taking its readings as gospel. For one thing, taking accurate readings means investing in high quality hardware in the first place. Secondly, just because the temperature is X in one corner of the greenhouse doesn’t mean it won’t be Y or Z just a few metres away. Last but not least, taking accurate readings also means taking into account things like humidity and soil quality – not just those all-important temperatures. Another common mistake among landscapers is that of relying on inaccurate or incomplete readings.

4. Supplementary Lighting

Let’s face it – it’s not as if you can rely on Mother Nature to provide your plants with plenty of beaming and day-long sunlight throughout the winter months. If anything, you and your plants find yourselves plunged into what at least feels like perpetual darkness. As such, you might want to think about kitting out your greenhouse with at least a little supplementary lighting. Just be sure to remember when doing so that all greenhouse lighting is most certainly not of the same quality or value. If you want to do as the very best landscapers and gardeners do, you’ll need to set up a high-end rig – chosen in accordance with the plants you intend to grow.

5. A Close Eye

Last but not least, insulating your greenhouse, providing plenty of warmth, upping the ante with quality lighting and so on will only get you so far. If you really want to succeed with greenhouse growing during the winter, you need to keep a close eye on things at all times. The reason being that weather conditions during the winter have a habit of swinging wildly from one extreme to the next on a regular basis, usually with no real warning whatsoever. Meaning that just when you think you’ve got everything perfectly balanced, it turns out to be quite the contrary. Take a leaf from the books of the most successful landscapers and be sure to keep a very close eye on things at all times.

 

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