It is not enough to sow or transplant in a greenhouse to harvest in abundance. Greenhouse cultivation cannot be improvised. Soil preparation, location of the greenhouse, growing conditions, plant density are among the crucial points to consider before starting. Here are the ten mistakes to avoid in order to properly grow your vegetables and aromatic herbs in greenhouses.
1 – Not preparing the soil for your greenhouse
Planting or sowing in a greenhouse without knowing whether the soil is calcareous, sandy, clayey or humus is a mistake that many beginner gardeners make. No doubt they are unaware that the nature of the soil influences plant development. Thus, the soil in the greenhouse must have the following characteristics:
- Well drained,
- Hydrogen potential (pH) around 7 (below, the soil is too acidic),
- Fertile enough.
It’s usually before winter preparing the ground for a greenhouse. It is advisable to dig, to remove the stones, the roots and the vegetable debris, then to loosen the ground well and finally to make a contribution of humus. Future cultures will be able to draw from it all the elements necessary for their development.
2 – Failing to replace the soil in the greenhouse
After a year of greenhouse cultivation, you should know that the soil is exhausted. Moreover, in this type of environment, the soil is depleted much more quickly than in the vegetable garden. This is why it is absolutely essential to renew the soil of the greenhouse once a year on a height of 10 to 15 cm because after being cultivated, this upper layer contains:
- weed seeds,
- Germs of all kinds that promote diseases for future crops,
We take this opportunity to incorporate a organic fertilizer to this layer of new soil, such as manure or compost.
3 – Too much or not enough brightness
Plants need sufficient light to grow. They need no less than six hours of light per 24 hour period. Be careful, however, to respect the following points:
- If the greenhouse is installed in full sun, too much light is detrimental to the development of crops because of ultraviolet rays. It is therefore necessary to put a shade net.
- If the greenhouse is located in a very shaded area of the garden, since there is insufficient light, it is necessary to install a artificial lighting.
4 – Install the greenhouse in the shade
Any greenhouse positioned near a drop shadow source is plagued bymoisture accumulation. But, this one is unhealthy for plants. You should therefore avoid installing your greenhouse under trees, near a high wall or a building, for example. The situation must always be clear. However, to absolutely avoid the cooling of the glass walls (if one chooses to cultivate in a greenhouse made of glass) it is necessary outlaw areas of the garden very exposed to Air Currents permanent.
5 – Too much or not enough humidity
Humidity is a very important factor in a greenhouse. Too much of it leads to the rotting of the plants, too little of it is responsible for their withering. L’watering must therefore be measured and adapted in season. Of course, we water less in winter than in summer. There are several solutions for watering under a greenhouse:
- The system of drip which distributes water in small quantities.
- L’manual wateringbut it is preferable to banish the hose and to favor the watering can.
In any case, care must be taken to water each type of plant according to its own needswith clockwork regularity and beware of condensation, especially when the glazing is cooled by the outside air.
6 – Poorly ventilate your greenhouse
Containment promotes maladies cryptogamiquesthe development of mousse and the infestation of plants by certain parasites such as scale insects. To avoid this, it is essential to ventilate your greenhouse on a daily basis, whatever the season. In winter, of course, we take advantage of the sunniest hours to ventilate a greenhouse.
Depending on the type of greenhouse you have, you can:
- Lift the tarp,
- open a window,
- Raise the windows.
You can also opt for a side ventilation system if, for example, the greenhouse consists of a tarpaulin. Thus, the ambient air is continuously renewed. Note that a greenhouse fan is a good solution because this device is inexpensive and very easy to use.
7 – Skip weeding
A greenhouse should be weeded regularly, and it is essential to intervene as soon as weeds appear. This innocuous gesture should be systematic in order to slow down the development of undesirable weeds. You should know that weeds:
- Oppose great competition to crops,
- Deplete the soil of nutrients,
- Generally grow faster than plants that are sown or transplanted,
- Produce thousands of seeds and self-sow.
In any case, it is easier to permanently eliminate weeds if you frequently weed your greenhouse because they eventually run out. Different solutions allow the gardener to simplify the task, namely:
- The geotextile fabric.
But under no circumstances should he resort to chemical weedkillers.
8 – Tighten your plants too much in the greenhouse
Sowing very densely so as not to waste space is a mistake because it is counter productive. All plants need a living space to prosper in the best conditions and by respecting this crucial point, we have a much better chance of benefiting from a good harvest.
By reserving sufficient space for each plant, this allows:
- To promote air circulation,
- to avoid diseases,
- To produce more beautiful vegetables.
Before sowing or transplanting in a greenhouse, it is recommended to find out about the space that each type of plant needs for its development and to respect the number of feet per square meter.
9 – Sow abundantly in a greenhouse
There is no need to overload your greenhouse with vegetables and aromatics because the more plans there are, the more complicated the management of the greenhouse. The interest is to grow just the right amount pour meet the needs of the family. By being reasonable, the gardener limits his efforts, avoids wasting vegetables but also water and time.
10 – Sowing too early in the greenhouse
One may be tempted to sow before time to take advantage of early harvests, thinking that by growing in a greenhouse the plants are not likely to suffer. It is strongly discouraged. Even when growing under cover, the weather conditions must be taken into account since they affect the temperature of the soil and the air even in a tunnel or a greenhouse.
Under a greenhouse, a tunnel or a frame, it is of course possible to shift the sowing slightly in relation to what can be done outdoors. But it can turn out to be very illusory to start sowing really too early because the emergence of the seeds is not fast enough in unsuitable conditions, there is a much greater risk of rot or contamination by any disease. Finally, it is important to take into account the climate of your geographical area to start planting.