Homemade Budget Greenhouses

Hi Tony,

We spoke yesterday about the small budget greenhouses that I built.

I used timber that I scavenged from a building site to make the bases.

The drums were purchased for $10 each (I made sure that had not been filled with toxic chemicals in them previously). They were throughly washed out before using. I then cut them in half lengthways using a jigsaw.

The strapping that you can see in the photo was acquired from a timber yard free. This strapping is used to support the drums in the centre and also to reinforce the timber structure and the plastic covering.

The covering is mattress bags from a bedding shop. The plastic lasts for about a year.

We used nova light offcuts on the front, and painted them black at the bottom to attract the heat.

I had to buy the timber to make the lids and made the hinges and lock downs myself. The lids can be totally removed in summer by pulling the pins in the hinges.

We then filled the drums with 50/50 mix of mulch, and compost.

At the present time the soil temperature is between 12 and 15 degrees. These greenhouses are simple to move. You firstly remove the drums and lid, then the frame is light enough to be lifted and transported.

At the moment we are growing silverbeet, bok choy, lettuce, endive and spring onions.

We've also have used drums cut in half as pots to grow garlic and tomatoes successfully. Last year we grew one zuchinni plant, as a test, and we got 21 zuchinnis from it.

After my neck injury my partner and I had to evaluate what else I could do. We came up with the idea of a trailer to be towed behind a mobility scooter. We called it a "skoottrailer". The trailer is designed for shopping, or odd jobs like transporting compost around the garden or picking up garden rubbish.

If you would like to look at the "skoottrailer" our website is www.skoottrailer.co.nz.

David J. Smith

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DIY greenhouse

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