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6 DIY Lean-To Greenhouses You Can Build Today (With Pictures)

traditional rustic lean to greenhouse

If you enjoy gardening, a small greenhouse can be a great way to get your plants started each season, and it will help you receive a better harvest of fruits and vegetables. However, purchasing a commercial greenhouse can be expensive, so keep reading as we list several DIY projects that you can follow to create a lean-to greenhouse quickly and cheaply.

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The 6 Plans for DIY Lean-To Greenhouses

1. DIY Greenhouse

diy greenhouse
Image By: I Like to Make Stuff
Materials: 2x4s, nails, plywood, clear polycarbonate sheets
Tools: Circular saw, drill, box cutters
Difficulty: Advanced

The DIY Greenhouse uses clear polycarbonate sheets to create a perfect greenhouse environment for your plants. It requires quite a few specialized tools, like a lathe, that some people might not have, but the directions are easy to follow, and the finished product is worth the effort.

2. Lean-To Greenhouse

diy lean-to greenhouse
Image By: Garden Plans Free
Materials: 2x4s, screws, greenhouse film, door hinges
Tools: Hammer, tape measure, screwdriver, miter saw
Difficulty: Advanced

The Lean-To Greenhouse results in a greenhouse that you and your plants will enjoy. It makes use of greenhouse film to create the environment, it has several ventilation windows that you can open and close, and there is plenty of room to move around. You can complete it in a single day, and it will likely last many years.

3. Empress of Dirt Greenhouse

diy lean-to greenhouse
Image Credit: Empress of Dirt
Materials: 2x4s, plywood, deck screws, polycarbonate sheets
Tools: Miter saw, jigsaw, drill
Difficulty: Advanced

The Empress of Dirt Greenhouse is great fun to build and will result in a durable and functional greenhouse that will last many years. It uses polycarbonate sheets, which results in a well-lit greenhouse with plenty of airflow to help maintain a consistent temperature. There is plenty of room for plants, and you can complete it in a day or two.

4. Old Windows DIY Greenhouse

Materials: Old windows, nails, 2x4s, paint
Tools: Hammer, nail gun, hand saw, razor blade
Difficulty: Advanced

The Old Windows DIY Greenhouse is the perfect project for recycling old windows after a replacement. The instructions are in video form, so the plan is easy to follow, and the author provides plenty of helpful tips to help your greenhouse turn out better. It’s also customizable, and you can adjust the size and shape to suit your needs and supplies.

5. Tiny Farm Greenhouse

Materials: Greenhouse plastic, plywood, aluminum ground posts
Tools: Hammer, hand saw, nail gun, tape measure
Difficulty: Advanced

The Tiny Farm Greenhouse utilizes an aluminum frame to create a lightweight but durable greenhouse that will last many years, and it has a unique appearance that’s a bit different than the others on this list. The video instructions are more of an overview than a step-by-step guide, so it’s harder to follow, but if you are patient, it’s not difficult to complete.

6. Recycled Windows Greenhouse

Materials: Old windows, 2x4s, nails
Tools: Hammer, hand saw, ladder, tape measure
Difficulty: Advanced

The Recycled Windows Greenhouse helps you use up any old windows and 2×4 boards to create a large and versatile lean-to greenhouse. The video instructions are easy to follow, and the author explains each step well, so it’s easy to tell if you are doing something wrong. The resulting project is quite large and capable of holding many plants while still providing enough room to walk around comfortably.

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The 5 Essential Tips for Maintaining a Hobby Greenhouse

1. Add Automatic Vents

When possible, set up your air vents to open automatically to help maintain a consistent temperature that will help the plants grow better.

2. Add Oscillating Fans

Use oscillating fans to help improve air circulation and prevent cold spots, which can lead to disease.

3. Don’t Overwinter Outdoor Plants

Overwintering outdoor plants in your greenhouse will invite insects and diseases, which can harm your plants. It’s also a good idea to remove any sickly plants when they appear.

plant disease on vegetable seedling
Image Credit: Lertwit Sasipreyajun, Shutterstock

4. Maintain Temperature

Check your greenhouse several times each day to ensure that the temperature is within expected limits, and take steps to correct it if it’s not. You can also use this opportunity to ensure that your seeds and seedlings are properly hydrated.

5. Set Alarms

A thermostat attached to an alarm is a great way to make sure your plants aren’t getting stressed out. Many modern thermometers will work with your smartphone to alert you if the temperature is too high or low.

6. Watch Your Plants

It can be easy to plant too many plants in your greenhouse, especially large plants that might get larger than you expect because of the ideal environment. Unfortunately, too many plants can reduce airflow, encourage disease, and make your greenhouse look messy.

super easy diy greenhouse shelves
Image Credit: Hometalk

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When looking for a lean-to-greenhouse project to try, we recommend the DIY Greenhouse, which uses clear polycarbonate sheets and plywood to create an amazing and functional greenhouse. Another great project is the Lean-To Greenhouse, which uses greenhouse film to create a warm environment in which plants will grow well. If you have old windows lying around, the Old Windows DIY Greenhouse can help you recycle them.

Featured Image Credit: Keith 316, Shutterstock


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