Greenhouse Accessories

Greenhouse Accessories

greenhouse accessories header

It's one thing to have your greenhouse all set up, installed and ready to go for the new season. However an empty greenhouse is a bit like an empty house; you're best off getting some furnishings for inside it. Never fear, we have your back. In this article we'll go through some greenhouse accessories that can further optimise your growing environment, reduce the risk of setbacks or simply make life easier.

Staging and Shelving
Greenhouse staging refers to raised platforms or benches within the greenhouse. You can create a multi-tier set up with staging and shelving, allowing you to maximise the growing space or place certain plants in optimal positions. Staging can also make things easier and more accessible when it comes to garden tasks like watering, pruning and potting. 

Seedling Trays
The greenhouse is an excellent place to propagate seedlings, as the controlled environment inside the structure allows you to get a good headstart on the growing season. Warm-climate vegetables in particular will need this extra time to grow successfully in the temperate UK and Ireland climate.

Cell trays come in different sizes and with different spacings in mind, with anything from 4 cells to 84. They will often have removable lids and tray inserts. The Bustaseed propagation tray adds a neat touch with its easy-removal design for when the seedlings are ready to be transplanted.

seedling trays

Soil Warming Cables
Trays can be combined with heating mats or soil warming cables. These can help you to maintain optimum warmth for propagation, or provide frost protection if there's a sudden plunge in outdoor temperatures. 

Capillary Matting
Ideally suited to greenhouse benches or staging, capillary matting works by 'wicking' moisture from a reservoir of water below. Plant pots, seed trays etc are placed on the mat, which absorbs moisture evenly. In this way water is delivered directly to plant roots, reducing runoff, waste and the risk of overwatering. 

capillary matting

The greenhouse is a very suitable place for a propagator or a dedicated propagation area. Propagators allow for precise temperature control and can really speed up germination. It's a very popular growing method for those of us who live in temperate, mild climates with shorter growing seasons, allowing you to get down to business rather than waiting impatiently for outdoor temperatures to pick up.

Grow Lights
Some seedlings ideally need sunlight to germinate, but sunlight can be hit and miss in early spring depending on where you are based. Here is where grow lights come in; they can either 'simulate' or supplement daylight and thus reduce the risk of leggy seedlings or weak growth.

Potting Bench
A potting bench or table can be an invaluable addition to the greenhouse, acting as an organisational 'hub' or workstation at a comfortable height. They frequently offer lower shelf space for placing garden tools, watering cans, potting mixes and other garden essentials. 

Potting Scoop, Trowels, etc
Speaking of tools, you can more than likely find what you need in our Garden Planting Tools section. Of particular use might be a transplanting trowel, potting scoop or a dial seed sower.

Ideally you will want temperatures in the greenhouse to be relatively balanced: too much heat and plants can become stressed, while if temperatures are dropping below a certain point it might be time to break out the heating mats. A thermometer provides you with an accurate and observable method of tracking the indoor climate, allowing you to take action early. Digital hygrometers meanwhile can measure the percentage humidity inside the greenhouse.

Shade Cloth
Because of the nature of a greenhouse's design, it can be susceptible to overheating in summer months. Roller blinds or shade cloth can be used to provide a cooling effect during spells of very hot weather. Shade cloth is available in different densities, blocking out between 30-90% of sunlight. White or reflective cloth can be more effective still than black material. Shade blinds can be placed on the outside or the inside of the structure; outside the cooling effect will be stronger as the sun's heat is being intercepted before it enters. Blinds can easily be rolled back, which means that you can let sunlight in in the morning or long evenings, getting the best of both worlds. 

Automatic Vent Openers
Ventilation is vitally important in the greenhouse; it regulates temperature and can reduce excess humidity. Commercial greenhouses will feature either roof vents or wall vents, while additional vents can be ordered or installed if preferred. Automatic vent openers can adjust the amount of airflow in response to temperature. They achieve this by using a mechanism that expands or contracts in response to heating and cooling.

automatic openers for greenhouse vents can keep the temperature steady.

Another ventilation design method is to have louvred side vents lower in the structure for airflow, with roof vents allowing excess heat to escape (since heat rises).

Many greenhouses will feature a low threshold entrance: this is designed to enable easy access for wheelbarrows, wheelchairs etc. Wheelbarrows can really come in handy for transporting compost, mulch material, transplants and so on.

a downpipe kit can be connected to a water butt.

Water Butt/Downpipe Kit
Greenhouse models such as the Vitavia models that we supply can easily encompass a downpipe kit to catch rainwater. In turn this can be connected to a water butt or container. Not only is this a sustainable, eco-friendly solution for greenhouse irrigation, it will save you a lot of time and effort if you have a water source in close proximity to your greenhouse. Water butts can be invaluable during hot spells in summer when water restrictions may be in place.

Cleaner or Disinfectant
Due to the enclosed environment and frequent humidity, fungal disease can be something of a risk in the greenhouse. While Citrox can be used anywhere in the garden, it's got a big picture of a greenhouse on the cover so it's undoubtedly ideal for this purpose. It's also safe for use around children, pets and wildlife. The disinfectant is based on extracts of citrus fruit, and it effectively fights a wide range of bacterial and fungal diseases. One big advantage is that you don't need to move all your plants out of the way before use (due to the lack of toxic ingredients).