Greenhouses significantly extend the growing season of any plant. This is a serious reason for such objects to become common in all regions of the vast country. Simplicity of design and its low cost are also important factors in the popularity of greenhouses. If you make a greenhouse “conscientiously” from high-quality materials, then it can serve for many years, and the costs of its creation are repaid many times over. Polycarbonate is the material that is most in demand, it is lightweight, inexpensive and durable. Manufacturers give a guaranteed service life of at least five years.
Features and advantages of the material
Only a greenhouse can help protect the crop from cold weather, provide it with everything you need at any time of the year. Before building such an object, you should carefully prepare and plan everything. If there are defects or errors in the design, then it will be difficult and expensive to eliminate them later. And also the imperfection of the design will inevitably affect the yield indicators..
Before starting work, you should be familiar with the various materials and drawings of greenhouses. Polycarbonate is a popular modern material for creating a greenhouse; it meets the requirements in the best way. For many years, glass and PVC film served as the material for the greenhouse..
All of these coatings have advantages, but also significant disadvantages:
- glass is fragile and heavy, it is difficult to mount it;
- PVC film has little strength and quickly deteriorates.
Cellular polycarbonate does not differ in transparency from glass, at the same time it is easy to install and weighs much less. The material is well resistant to temperature and humidity changes.
Polycarbonate structure is three layers.
- The top layer is a solid sheet, in which there is a special UV film that protects against the harmful effects of ultraviolet rays.
- The middle row is empty honeycomb cells. They can be an excellent heat insulator, while at the same time giving additional rigidity to the entire sheet..
- The bottom layer also provides overall structural strength.
Polycarbonate weighs a little, the foundation for it needs unreasonable, therefore its cost is much less.
On average, a polycarbonate greenhouse “works” for 5-8 years. Polycarbonate has good thermal insulation properties. Has an excellent coefficient of light transmission, allowing you to grow a wide variety of plants. In the cold season, polycarbonate successfully withstands significant snow load.
Standard and optimal dimensions
The size of the greenhouse varies markedly, most often in suburban areas of 6 acres there are objects 3 by 4 meters, the length can also reach 6 m.These greenhouses meet all the requirements, at the same time they have acceptable dimensions that correspond to the format of the site.
But objects in the following formats are also in good demand:
- 2×3 m;
- 3×6 m;
- 3 by 8 meters;
- 2 by 4 meters;
- 6 by 12 meters;
- 3×4 m;
- 6×3 m;
- 2×4 m.
The width of 2 m greenhouses is also popular, the area of 2×6 m is one of the most common.
Of the chamber formats, the Snail greenhouse (2×2 meters) is in demand, it is good to grow seedlings in it, it is easy to transfer it to different points of the site. Such an object has a small height, only 85 cm.
It is assembled in twenty minutes, the frame is hollow pipes, the foundation is:
- small concrete blocks.
In commercial farms, greenhouses 10 meters long can be found, large greenhouses can be very cost-effective, and crops can be harvested four times a year..
Relationship with components
Consider the most important blocks that make up any greenhouse.
The length is usually a multiple of the dimensions of the polycarbonate sheets:
- 61 cm;
- 121 cm.
It is also important to take into account the parameter of the racks that will be in the greenhouse, the number of pallets. It should be borne in mind that the use of solid sheets is more preferable, this reduces the cost of creating a greenhouse and is a significant factor for strengthening the frame.
The thickness of the sheets should fluctuate between 3.6 and 6.2 mm, these are the optimal parameters that will meet the following indicators:
- transparency coefficient.
The configuration of the greenhouse and its dimensions are determined by the customer. The material of the supporting structures is most often wood or metal. All elements must be treated with antiseptics and primers, nowadays there are effective formulations that allow you to ensure that there is no corrosion for a long time. It is necessary to do this, the microclimate of the greenhouse is humid, has a positive temperature; if you do not process the nodes of the structure, then after a few years it will hopelessly deteriorate.
PVC profiles have proven themselves well, they are not inferior in strength to steel, at the same time there is no risk that they will rust or rot. When making load-bearing structures from such profiles, it should be remembered that they must be located and mounted so that it is possible to withstand heavy loads in the cold season. There are tested patterns for the arrangement of PVC profiles, in which they realize their maximum potential.
The massiveness of the foundation and its cost are interrelated with the weight of the structure. Often, for greenhouses of small mass, a foundation of timber or logs is used. But a foundation on screw piles is also quite acceptable. In terms of their characteristics, piles are not much inferior to the strip foundation, at the same time they are installed quickly and are inexpensive.
The strip foundation is the most expensive and laborious, it is able to withstand heavy loads. A trench should be dug under it, filled with concrete and reinforced. It will also take 4-6 months for the foundation to “shrink”. If you analyze the practical side of the issue, then a strip foundation for greenhouses is not required. The weight of the greenhouse structure itself is small; this type of foundation is more suitable for a home.
Length and width of sheets
Polycarbonate sheets are 6 meters long and 2.1 meters wide. When creating a drawing, one should proceed from these parameters. The sheet can be cut into pieces of 3×2.1 meters. And also a working format is considered to be a sheet size of 1.5×2.1 meters. It is not easy to divide the material according to the width, so you can rarely find such things..
The roofs of greenhouses, like those of houses, can be pitched and gable. The angles of inclination of the roof vary, they can be from 19 to 32 ° or even up to 46 °. The greater the degree of inclination, the less snow will accumulate, the likelihood of roof destruction under the weight of the snow cover is noticeably reduced. Shed roofs often have different diagonal fasteners. Typically, the material is a metal corner 40×40 mm. Shed roofs are most often made when the greenhouse is an extension to the main building..
The distance between such supporting structures is slightly more than a meter (1.1 m), and the same applies to rafters, which are mounted on the same level with vertical wall structures.
The configuration of the greenhouse is determined by the plants that are grown in it..
- classic rectangular elongated shapes with different roofs.
A classic greenhouse has a standard layout: various crops grow on the sides, and a walkway is located in the center. This arrangement is considered the most rational and therefore very widespread. A standard polycarbonate sheet panel is six meters long and 2.1 meters wide, it makes sense to take these parameters into account when designing..
In total, there are several main types of greenhouses, each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages..
- An arch-shaped greenhouse has semicircular support nodes to which beams are attached. Polycarbonate sheets are bent and screwed to the frame. The advantage of this design is that it experiences a minimum snow load in winter, it is not difficult to assemble it. Among the disadvantages, it can be noted that the height of such structures has its own limitations, which often interferes with work. The classic version is an arched greenhouse with a gable roof. A little more material is needed for its creation, but at the same time it is possible to advantageously solve the problem of eliminating the problem of the low height of the structure. On the basis of an arched greenhouse, you can make the so-called Mitlider greenhouse, it is notable for the fact that it has a good air exchange system.
- A greenhouse with a pitched roof is the most acceptable option for a structure that is adjacent to the main house or fence. From a technical point of view, making such an object easier than ever, at the same time significantly reducing the cost of additional communications (if the greenhouse is part of the house).
- A greenhouse-bread bin is a compact object in which a sash opens. It really resembles a breadbox in shape and is convenient, it is good to grow seedlings in it. The doors in such a greenhouse are easy to adjust depending on the ambient temperature..
- Tent or domed greenhouses have proven themselves well. Creating spherical shapes is not an easy task; some engineering skills are required here. The semicircular design compares favorably with the fact that it withstands various loads (wind, snow). The illumination factor has a maximum. Looks aesthetically pleasing.
- Installation and assembly
Work on installing a polycarbonate greenhouse begins with choosing a location, then determining the material to be used. But the question also arises with the foundation, it can be on piles, as well as tape. The number of doors and windows is calculated, a diagram and drawing are made. The more light, the better for the plants, if natural light is constantly present in the room during the daylight hours, then this will be the best option. It is not always possible to withstand such criteria 100%, therefore, at least 6 hours a day, natural light should be present in the greenhouse..
It is easiest to build a greenhouse on a flat plane, if there is a significant slope (in a mountainous area), then in this option it is most reasonable to make a terrace. The longitudinal walls of the greenhouse are usually turned to the south, respectively, the ends “look” to the west and east. Air ducts and vents are located on the southern front.
It is also not recommended to equip a greenhouse in lowlands and on peat soils, often the temperature on such surfaces is noticeably lower, which can affect the vegetation in the greenhouse. Greenhouses are predominantly rectangular (except for greenhouses – “domes”). On the edges of the object there are beds with plants, in the middle there is a path for the passage. Most often, the height of the greenhouse does not exceed two meters, the size of the base is not taken into account. With the help of the plinth, you can significantly lower or raise the height of the object. Often this opportunity is used in farms where the length of greenhouses is more than ten meters..
In the event that the greenhouse has a significant width, then it is necessary to make several paths and beds. The average bed width is one meter; the width of the path is 55 cm. The width of the greenhouse is summed up from the following parameters: the width of the paths, beds and the thickness of the walls are summed up. The width of greenhouses varies from 2.8 to 6.5 meters. All calculations are made taking into account the width of a standard polycarbonate sheet, that is, there must be a multiplicity of 2.05 meters. The step between vertical supporting structures is no more than one meter.
For an overview of the assembly of polycarbonate greenhouses, see the following video.