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How Does a Greenhouse Work in Summer?

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Greenhouses work by trapping warmth and humidity, making them a perfect haven for your plants during cooler weather. But, that begs the question: how does this affect the plants during hot weather and how do greenhouses work in summer?

In this article, we’ll be answering that question by guiding you through some of the best practices for using a greenhouse in summer, as well as the best plants to grow and how you can keep your greenhouse cool when the temperatures rise.

So dive in below to make the most of your greenhouse this summer.

How to Use a Greenhouse In Summer

Navigating the summer season in your greenhouse doesn’t have to be a sweat-inducing ordeal. After putting it to the test and drawing from our extensive experience, we’ve gathered some top tips to help you make the most of your greenhouse when the sun is in full swing:

Use heat-tolerant plants

Choosing the right plants is the cornerstone of summer greenhouse gardening. Heat-tolerant varieties like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants are not just survivors; they’re prolific producers under the sweltering sun.

greenhouse in summer

These plants have adapted to thrive in warm conditions, ensuring that your greenhouse becomes a hub of productivity. From our trials, we’ve seen these varieties not only endure but also produce bountiful harvests that are a testament to their resilience.

We’ll discuss more of the best plants for summer greenhouse growing below.

Ventilation is your best friend

A well-ventilated greenhouse is the key to balancing hot summer days. Strategic opening of vents and doors promotes a steady airflow, crucial for displacing hot air and inviting cooler breezes.

For those looking to automate the process, installing automated vent openers can provide a hassle-free way to maintain optimal conditions, ensuring that the heat does not stifle your plants.

This constant renewal of air mimics the natural outdoor environment, providing your plants with the conditions they need to thrive.

Shade and hydrate

Employing shade cloths of appropriate densities can shield your plants from harsh rays while still allowing enough light for photosynthesis.

Hydration plays a pivotal role as well; maintaining consistent soil moisture ensures that your plants remain hydrated and healthy.

A balance of shading and watering techniques, tailored to the needs of your specific plant varieties, can create a microclimate that fosters vigorous growth.

Monitor and manage temperature

Keeping a close eye on the greenhouse temperature is essential during the summer months. According to our research, temperatures above 81°F can start to stress many plants, affecting their growth and productivity.

can you use a greenhouse in the summer

Utilizing maximum-minimum thermometers can help you monitor the conditions inside your greenhouse, allowing you to take action before the heat becomes detrimental to your plants.

Practice damping down

Damping down is an age-old technique that involves wetting the greenhouse floors and surfaces to increase humidity and cool the air through evaporation.

This method is particularly effective in dry climates, where the added moisture can make a substantial difference in the overall greenhouse climate. Regular damping down in the morning and late afternoon can help maintain a cooler, more stable environment for your plants.

What Plants to Grow in a Greenhouse in Summer

Summer in a greenhouse is like a tropical getaway for certain plants. From our experience, the following make excellent vacationers:

  • Tomatoes & Peppers: These sun-seekers love the warmth and will reward you with bountiful harvests.
  • Cucumbers & Melons: With the right moisture levels, they’ll sprawl, offering you juicy delights.
  • Herbs: Think basil, oregano, and thyme. They’ll add a fragrant touch to your summer greenhouse and your kitchen!

How to Keep a Greenhouse Cool in Summer

Strategic positioning

The orientation of your greenhouse can significantly impact its internal temperature. Positioning your greenhouse to maximize airflow and minimize direct sunlight during the hottest parts of the day can naturally reduce heat buildup.

summer greenhouse

Consider the path of the sun and prevailing winds when deciding where to place your greenhouse, as a north-south orientation can often provide optimal light while avoiding excessive direct sun exposure.

You can also strategically place the plants in your greenhouse to ensure each one receives its optimal conditions. Just be sure to look into how many plants can fit in a greenhouse when considering how to place your plants.

Reflective surfaces

Incorporating reflective materials inside or outside your greenhouse can effectively deflect unwanted heat and light away from your plants.

White gravel or reflective mulches placed on the ground can reflect sunlight, while installing reflective screens or painting surfaces white can further reduce heat absorption. Just make sure not to paint the polycarbonate of your greenhouse, as this can impact its efficacy.

This method helps in maintaining cooler temperatures by preventing excess heat from accumulating in the first place.

Natural shade

Leveraging natural shade can be a simple yet effective way to protect your greenhouse from overheating.

Planting deciduous trees or shrubs near your greenhouse can provide shade during the summer months while allowing sunlight to penetrate in the winter when the trees lose their leaves. This living shade adapts to the seasons, offering a dynamic solution to temperature control.

Solar-powered cooling fans

For those looking for an eco-friendly way to enhance airflow and reduce heat, solar-powered cooling fans are an excellent option. These fans use solar panels to generate power, making them a sustainable choice for greenhouse cooling.

can you use greenhouse in summer

They can be strategically placed to optimize air circulation, drawing hot air out of the greenhouse and allowing cooler air to enter. This active ventilation method can significantly lower temperatures, ensuring your plants remain in a comfortable and thriving environment.

Roof overhangs

Designing your greenhouse with roof overhangs can offer a passive cooling solution by blocking direct sunlight during the peak heat of the day. The overhangs cast shadows over the greenhouse, reducing the intensity of the sun’s rays and helping to keep the interior cool.

This architectural feature can be particularly effective on the sides of the greenhouse that receive the most sun exposure.

Misting systems

Greenhouse misting systems such as the one offered by Greenhouse Emporium can be a highly effective way to cool your greenhouse without the need for electricity. These systems disperse a fine mist of water into the air, which evaporates quickly, absorbing heat and significantly reducing the temperature.

This not only cools the air but also increases humidity, which can benefit plant health. Misting systems can be manually operated or set up with timers for convenience. It’s worth noting, though, that this isn’t effective in high-humidity climates.

If you’re using a mini greenhouse, you might not need as large a misting system, so be sure to calculate the appropriate size for your greenhouse.

Benefits of Using a Greenhouse in Summer

Summer greenhousing isn’t just possible; it’s incredibly rewarding! Here’s why:

Extended growing season

One of the most significant benefits of using a greenhouse in summer is the ability to extend your growing season.

can i use a greenhouse in the summer

The controlled environment within a greenhouse allows you to start your crops earlier in the spring and keep them growing well into the fall, beyond the typical outdoor growing calendar.

Pest protection

A well-maintained greenhouse acts as a fortress against the invasion of pests and diseases. By providing a barrier between your plants and the outside world, you significantly reduce the risk of pests such as aphids, caterpillars, and slugs damaging your crops.

Optimal growth conditions

The ability to manage and control the environment within a greenhouse is unparalleled. By fine-tuning the temperature, humidity, and watering schedules, you can create the ideal conditions for your plants to thrive.

This is one of the reasons why plants grow better in a greenhouse.

Enhanced plant variety

An often overlooked benefit of summer greenhousing is the opportunity to cultivate a wider variety of plants, including those not typically suited to your local climate.

In our experience, the controlled environment of a greenhouse allows you to experiment with exotic or tropical plants that require higher temperatures and humidity levels than your outdoor garden can provide.

How Do Greenhouses Work in Summer? (FAQs)

How do high temperatures affect plants?

High temperatures can stress plants, leading to wilting, sunburn, and reduced growth. But fear not, with the right cooling strategies, your greenhouse plants can beat the heat.

What are crop temperature requirements?

Each plant has its Goldilocks zone – a temperature range where it grows best. Knowing these can help you tailor your greenhouse conditions for optimal growth.

Can I use a greenhouse for tropical plants in summer?

Absolutely! Summer is the perfect time to turn your greenhouse into a tropical paradise. With controlled humidity and warmth, tropical plants can flourish, bringing a touch of the exotic to your backyard.

Discover the joy of summer gardening with the perfect greenhouse building kit from Greenhouse Emporium – elevate your gardening game today!

Picture of Jesse James
Jesse James

Jesse James, an Army Veteran, now shares his passion for gardening through engaging articles on Greenhouse Emporium. Leveraging his experience and love for nature, Jesse provides practical advice and inspires others on their gardening journey.

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