Many gardeners feel the subtle pings of disappointment when winter comes around. They put away shovel and spade and wait, as patiently as possible, for the ground to thaw. There are a hardy few, however, that manage to maintain at least a small garden all year round in their greenhouses.
A greenhouse will certainly allow folks in even the more harsh climates to practice their trade despite the chill of winter. Unfortunately, greenhouses cost money to build and to maintain; and even small greenhouses require at least a plot of land. Or do they?
The Mini Greenhouse
That modern marvel, the mini greenhouse, may be the answer you’ve been searching for! Mini greenhouses are designed to hold just a few plants and can be put almost anywhere. Space is no longer an issue for people who want to have at least a couple of plants growing throughout the year.Mini greenhouses are as diverse in style and design as their larger counterparts. The smallest ones look like umbrellas, though taller and more conical. They are perfect for covering single plants and are very easy to use and put up. If you want to keep just a couple of single plants growing outside all year, these umbrella type mini greenhouses are for you.A cold frame mini greenhouse is a small box made of the same material that a normal greenhouse is composed of. They will house several young or small plants and are great for starting seedlings while the weather is still cold. These models can easily fit on a balcony with room to spare.If you’ve got a bit more space, a mini lean-to or larger cold frame greenhouse will provide significantly more room to grow on. An excellent choice for the avid gardener with an itch for more than a few winter crops.
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Prices for these little beauties range from around $20 for a simple umbrella design, to around $300 for a larger mini model.
The Portable Greenhouse
Another option for a gardener wishing to dabble in year round growing is the portable greenhouse. Simple to erect and take down, the portable greenhouse is easy to store in the garage or basement when not in use. Though often not sturdy enough to be a permanent fixture, it’ll do the job of keeping your plants safe and warm between regular growing seasons.Portable greenhouses are much less expensive than a conventional greenhouse of the same size. This makes them a great choice for beginners looking to try their hand at greenhouse gardening without a large initial investment. Prices range from $30 to the mid $100’s. Since they can also be used as a temporary tool shed, a portable greenhouse can still be a sound investment if and when you decide to install a permanent one!