Types of Greenhouse Foundations
If the selected site has firm soil, construct concrete walls at the four corners of the frame. Level up the base of the structure before setting in the concrete walls. If the area has a slope, you need to use more soil to level up and firmly compact it down using rollers or with a vibrating plate.
Creating a soil base greenhouse allows you to cultivate fruits and vegetables directly in the soil. You can also be assured of good drainage. A soil base greenhouse foundation is one of the cheapest methods for constructing a greenhouse; although, there is a possibility of the frames subsiding, leading the breakage on the glass material.
If the soil drains poorly, the greenhouse can become muddy and waterlogged, which can allow for rodents and pests to breed inside.
You can create a perimeter base for the greenhouse, which you can make from slabs, concrete material, or breeze blocks. Measure the size of the base, then mark it with spray paint. Firmly fix the slabs or blocks down with a mixture of cement.
You can dig the area you want to fix to ensure you have a strong foundation. Laying the base directly on the sand can make the greenhouse unstable.
This kind of base provides you with a solid and cost-effective structure for building the greenhouse.
Slabs or Paving Base
If you’re looking for aesthetic, then you should use a slabs base. Having this type of base makes it easy to maintain the greenhouse, and you can plant your vegetables and fruits on the growing bags, containers, or pots.
This type of base is long-lasting and firmly fixed on the ground with the use of heavy duty plugs and multiple screws.
You can easily reorganize your greenhouse and keep it clean with this base. Water will be able to drain easily via the cracks on the slabs, though growing plants will be limited to using growing pots, bags, and containers.
It is the most expensive compared to perimeter and soil base.
A concrete base is suitable if you plan to build a large greenhouse, as it makes it easy to raise the base level. Concrete base has a durable foundation and you can easily clean the base using a detergent soap and water, or by simply sweeping the area with a broom. Washing this base with detergents can also help keep diseases away from the greenhouse.
Make sure to drill holes on the concrete to allow proper drainage of water in the greenhouse.
Once you have the base set up, you can construct the type of greenhouse style and start growing your plants.
Layout of the Greenhouse Site
Using what you now know about the various greenhouse styles, you can choose the right one based on your needs and come up with the site layout for your garden. Follow through this guide to know how to set up a layout for your garden.
Set-up greenhouse plan: You need to come up with a master plan for constructing buildings or facilities within the site. The plan should show detailed information on existing facilities within the site, evaluate any constraints and benefits of the site, and determine where to construct a new facility.
A good plan will outline where to construct the greenhouse, where to build a storage area, and the headhouse. If you’re planning to have an outdoor production, then the area you select should be only a few meters away, which will make shipping and moving the crops easier.
A headhouse is building that attaches to the greenhouse, or is a converted section in the greenhouse that acts as a working area, office, utility room, or a transplanting area.
You should plan for the expansion space. You can start out small at first, but as your business grows, you may want to expand the greenhouse; therefore, it is important to factor in expansion space in your master plan. Once you are satisfied with the plan, you can go ahead and look at other factors.
Parking area and access to facilities: If you’re setting up a commercial greenhouse facility, you need to ensure employees can conveniently access the growing area by providing a good parking area. Ensure the site has enough parking space for loading vehicles within the storage buildings and growing area, and employees and customers should also have their own parking lot. You will need to build all driveways and parking areas sloping to provide proper drainage. Alternatively, you can use underground piping to carry the water away.
Storage area: An indoor storage area is essential to store the harvested crops before shipping and transportation to the retail market. You also need a storage area for all farm equipment, containers, and chemicals, which can either be a separate building or in a headhouse. An outdoor storage area can be used for growing mix.
Outdoor facilities: You can set up an outdoor production facility to act as the growing bed or a shade house. The structure should have adequate lighting, a good drainage system, and an adequate water supply. The production area should be in a rectangular shape measuring about 1000 to 2000 square feet.