Greenhouse Advantages & Disadvantages

A greenhouse is a building made of glass or plastic that traps the sun's ultraviolet rays, providing a warm environment for plants to grow. The greenhouse simulates a warm, spring- to summer-like environment that protects plants from hot or cold shifts in temperature. A greenhouse allows a gardener to completely control everything about his plants, including the temperature, shade, watering, introduction and timing of pollination, and all chemicals and herbicides the plants come in contact with.

  1. Controlled Environment

    • One of the advantages to using a greenhouse is that you can control the environment. You can create a year-round spring-like, warm temperature for plants to grow, according to the website Learn About Garden Sheds. You can control how much sun comes in--one section of the greenhouse can be shaded, while the other section is full sun. You can control the amount of water the plants get. They are not affected by rain or outside moisture. Also, since the temperature is warm year round, you can plant and grow spring plants in winter, and have them bloom early since the environment allows for it. You can decide what you wish to plant, not wait on the weather to dictate what you can plant.

    Eliminate Pests

    • One of the advantages to using a greenhouse is that you can eliminate garden pests. It is hard, if not impossible, for many garden pests to enter a greenhouse, and therefore you can grow flowers, fruits and vegetables without worry about pests ruining the fruit or eating the flowers.

    Temperature Balance

    • A greenhouse is designed to store the sun's rays inside, providing a warm environment. A disadvantage to this is there are few openings to let air out if the environment gets too warm, and, if you do open a window or accidentally leave the door open and heated air escapes, the temperature can drop drastically and quickly and take awhile to heat back up. You have to monitor the inside temperature and gauge the outside temperature to evenly and accurately heat or cool the temperature.

    Simulated Pollination

    • When gardening in a greenhouse, you must mechanically pollinate or introduce insects so pollination can occur, according to the University of Arizona. Mechanical pollinators shake the plants to move pollen through the air. To pollinate using insects, the gardener must find and obtain the correct insects or pollinators, introduce them into the environment and, if needed, remove them from the environment. Gardeners can be intimidated at the thought of purchasing and releasing bees into their greenhouse and this can be a disadvantage.

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  • Photo Credit Gewächshaus image by Claudia Georgi from Fotolia.com

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