djonathang

HFGH 6x8 Shade Cloth Solution

djonathang
12 years ago

Hello All,

Well, I finally figured a way to address the application of shade cloth on my HFGH 6x8. I have attached a link to my photos.

Basically, I did the following:

1. Attached two eye bolts on the top rail.

2. Sewed a sleeve in the shade cloth (yes, I can sew. An awesome tool, that sewing machine).

3. Sewed two large button holes to acommodate the eye bolts.

4. Sewed an extension piece of shade cloth so it could cover the entire front and top(1/2) of the greenhouse.

5. Sewed a sleeve on the bottom of the shade cloth.

6. Sewed three large button holes in the bottom sleeve to allow for small bungee tie downs.

7. Cut the shade cloth allowing for the vent to open. I still need to velcro the shade cloth to the vent so it doesn't flap around in the wind on that section.

8. Slid a piece of electrical conduit (1") through the top sleeve, eye hook, middle sleeve, second eye hook, and last sleve portion. Installed end caps for neatness only.

9. Slid a piece of electrical conduit (1") through bottom sleeve, small bungee, middle sleeve, small bungee, more sleeve, small bungee.

  1. Glued end cap on bottom conduit.
  2. Filled bottom conduit with water. For weight in the wind.
  3. Glued other end cap on conduit.

That's all folks. When I don't want the shade cloth on, I'll just flip it to the back (North Side).

Feel free to ask any questions. I'd be glad to share thoughts.

Best,

DG

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Comments (15)

  • imqtpi
    12 years ago

    Awesome pictures and explanations!

    I'll be copying you when I'm ready to add my shade cloth (and I'm *sure* I'll have more questions!!!).

    Thanks for posting this!

    -Nancy

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    I'm also new to greenhouses but I'm sure impressed with the clean and professional look you've achieved. I really like the simple weight design, and being able to flip it over to the north side when not needed. Velcro on the window vent flaps sounds like a good idea too.

    My greenhouse will be very visible to many neighbors, and I'd been thinking I should put the shadecloth on the inside for cleaner appearances. But I've read that it's a bit less efficient on the inside, and if I could achieve something that looks this great, I might reconsider. I might still need to secure the leading edge due to our dratted winds, but this has given me food for thought! I appreciate your sharing it.

    As for the garden...it's fabulous. What a lovely setting for your greenhouse. It looks right at home, surrounded by a landscape tended by someone who is obviously no beginner!
    Sheri

  • djonathang
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Mudhouse,

    Thanks for the kind words. Definetly the school of hard knocks when it comes to gardening. I so wish I could have been good at something like carpentry. Unfortunately, I'm skilled with a shovel. Boo!

    I thought long and hard about putting the shade cloth on the interior. I had ideas of cables with turnbuckles at the angles (top, side, bottom), but the 6x8 is simply too small for that type of infrastructure. Quite frankly, I'm banging my head enough on the window closers, and don't need more above my head. On that note, I'm going to hang a couple mylar strips on the closers. Hopefully the flash will catch my eye before my forehead meets the opener.

    Last note. As I have to head off to work this morning, I noticed the flap over the vent was flipped over. I just grabbed 3 binder clasps (black things used in office environments to hold papers without staples). I placed one on each of the 3 sides - the fourth being the hinge. Worked like a charm temporarily.

    Best,

    DG

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    DG, binder clip idea noted...sometimes (often) the simplest solutions are the best.

    I can make out some nice looking benches in the greenhouse; I don't think I'm convinced you are only skilled with shovels and sewing machines. ;-)

    I see you're in zone 10. Will you use an exhaust fan in the greenhouse to combat the heat, or will you be able to use ventilation and shade cloth to keep it cool? Looks like you have a lot of nice shade trees in the area too (in contrast, my greenhouse will be an absolute broiler oven.)

  • djonathang
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Good morning Mudhouse,

    Benches were cobbled together with the following plans http://www.hammerzone.com/archives/workshop/bench/below20.html. I simply narrowed the depth of the benches to accommodate the width of the wire decking on two of the benches (side). I believe the sides are 15" deep, and the end one is 20". I put a plywood top on the 20" bench so I could have a place to work, repot plants, etc. Not such a great place to be in the middle of the day, but early morning and late afternoon, it's nice to be in and amongst the plants. After I completed the benches, I came across a posting on this site from someone who had used 2x2's instead of 2x4's. Very smart! I think 2x4's are a bit overkill for this application, and they take up more room, albeit it just a little.

    As far as temps go in the greenhouse, I think most of the time, just two vents (auto opening), opening the door when I head off to work in the morning, and the shade cloth should be sufficient. I saw that someone installed a solar fan designed for a motorhome. I might do that as well just to keep the air moving.

    As far as the surroundings are concerned, I went with the strategy of using natural shade produced by the leaves - this happens to be a fig tree shown and oak tree out of frame - during the summer, then taking advantage of the leaves falling in the winter to allow more light.

    DG

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    Hello DG,
    Forgot to say, good luck with the head-bonking problem. Maybe wrapping the window handles with faux fur would be a nice touch?

    Thanks for the link to the bench plans. That's the kind of bench I was envisioning, including the same 20" vinyl-coated wire shelving tops (I do like those... light-colored, great ventilation, practical.) My husband (aka Director of Construction) likes the idea of tops made from 2x2 redwood slats instead, so we'll see. I like how stand-alone benches like yours can be rearranged, or removed from the greenhouse if everything needs a good scrubbing.

    I'm jealous of your storybook setting, and your helpfully aligned trees. We spent months staring at our trees and discussing options. There were really only two choices...full summer shade under two pecan trees (too shady for my succulents) or full summer sun. I chose the sun, so I don't think I can escape the exhaust fan, although I wish I could avoid that complexity.

    We spent more time this morning looking at your nice shade cloth design. Thanks again for posting it, I'm sure others will find it as helpful as we have.

  • djonathang
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Hello Mudhouse,

    Good to hear from you again. I wanted to tell you how impressed I am with your 10x12 shown on another posting. If I had more space... Your Director of Construction is clearly skilled. Good choice!

    I think the 2x2 redwood would be really nice. If I were a better carpenter, I'd go with the aesthetic of redwood. My wife and I have found the view of the terra cotta pots seen from the outside is a nice feature in the garden. I think that the aged redwood would have an equally nice appeal. Of course, the rubber coated shelving is easy, durable, and immediate. Heck why not two of those, and one long redwood bench. Could be really nice.

    The "storybook setting" is a recent change. I re-did my yard this year. We had two goals in mind.

    1. Buffer our house from the street. This meant removing the front lawn entirely, and planting an apron of california native plants that will eventually form a thicket - a sort of natural living fence.

    2. Have the home in the center of the habitat. This is accomplished by making the front yard as interesting a garden as the back. I figure from a birdseye point of view, the yard looks like a great place to hang out.

    The results of this effort have been noteworthy. We have everything from nesting Barn Owls and Blue Jays, to a well balanced eco system. The yard is 100% natural/organic. All weeding is by hand, and the critters seem to take care of each other (good for some, bad for others). At any given time, you might see 6 species of birds. I said to my wife the other day that our yard has become an "experience".

    Best,

    DG

    ps...looking into the cost of high-quality faux fur.

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    OK, you guys win, redwood it is. It would be pretty. (Ask me how I feel after sanding hundreds of wooden slats.)

    Good for you! I wish more people could landscape in ways to benefit wildlife!

    Our yard is a bit over an acre, in a dense subdivision of mostly smaller yards. Around here (southern New Mexico) most folks have gravel front yards with southwestern landscaping, but ours is one of the few retaining the original scruffy (ratty) natural desert, so we still enjoy some scruffy wildlife too. I'm trying to add plants to increase the native plant diversity, especially those producing seeds attractive to Gambels Quail.

    We sometimes have Roadrunners and Great Horned Owls in the yard (not so good for the Spotted Ground Squirrels or baby quail). Cactus Wrens nest in the native Cholla cactus and yuccas. The annoying Curved-Bill Thrashers take an awful toll on my succulents...they have beaks like ice picks, so my greenhouse will need screens on all openings. So far, one Desert Tortoise, one Gopher snake that my husband discovered under his foot (no harm to either) and about three thousand lizards. Recently our neighborhood is seeing an increase in Gray Foxes, who come to crunch the hard seedpods from our Honey Mesquite tree (very noisy.)

    {{gwi:303130}}

    I haven't grown from seed in years, and the greenhouse will mainly hold my cacti and succulents, but I have a fuzzy idea about starting native wildflowers to see if I can establish those in the yard.

    My patient husband dug a trench for the greenhouse electrical today (100° plus heat.) On we go.

  • djonathang
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Mudhouse,

    Last post I promise. Something I wanted to mention on the construction of the workbenches should you go down that path. I made one mistake along the way which was ultimately corrected. I measure the space available in the greenhouse, and cut the boards accordingly. What I failed to tak into account was the boards around the outside of the legs extend further than the top. In my case it was a total of 3" using finished 2x4's. As a result, I had to dismantle one of the benches, and re-cut.

    Love the fox. Here's my visitor this year.

    {{gwi:303140}}

    Cheers,

    DG

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    What a gorgeous bird! Thanks so much for the tip on the benches. I'm sure I'll post back here when we tackle that part; I'm getting impatient!
    Sheri

  • buyorsell888
    12 years ago

    Your garden is fabulous, good for you in encouraging natives, plants and animals.

  • baileybear
    12 years ago

    Love your garden. A person of many talents.
    Those that are in high heat zones have you ever thought of having sun screens made for the greenhouse. They could just make panels that we could snap in and out as on the house. Or heck we could make them ourselves with supplies from HD or Lowes. We can get up to 90 percent blockage. Would make a nice neat appearance. I live in an HOA and am trying to hide the greehouse.

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    Baileybear, I'm planning on making my own screens using the screen-making supplies at HD. They have frame components up to 7' tall, which is the height of my side walls. We also plan on adding very simple sliding screen doors to the inside of the greenhouse. I think it will help my ventilation problem greatly, and keep the birds out as well.

  • baileybear
    12 years ago

    Mudhouse
    Have you made your sunscreen yet? I am just finally getting my greenhouse together. Show us some pictures and lets see how they look. I know I am going to need them. Any instructions or tips would be appreciated.

  • mudhouse_gw
    12 years ago

    Hi baileybear, yup, I made the screens for the south wall. Here's a link to the thread with my photos:
    Aluminet shade cloth screen panels for HFGH.

    Since then, I've also added a drape of Aluminet shadecloth to the interior roof, and I'll try to update my screen panel thread later today with some photos of that too, so you have all the info in one place.
    Sheri