Making more space to protect the plants

Seedlings in the greenhouse.

Seedlings in the greenhouse.

How do you get your amaryllis to flower like this?

BRIAN KIDD: Your letters and this week’s gardening tasks

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My word, doesn’t the greenhouse fill up quickly at this time of year?

As I have often said if you could invent a greenhouse with elastic sides you would make a fortune.

While thinking about impossible ideas, wouldn’t it be great if someone could introduce a solar panel system which would charge up high power batteries so that we gardeners could use the sun’s energy to provide

electricity for low voltage soil warming cables.

When I was an apprentice we used a 12-volt car

battery connected to chicken wire buried three inches below the soil level and it provided warmth for about two hours.

With modern technology I feel sure someone out there can see this is a real moneymaker. Could you get around to this using solar panels?

Back to the shortage of space in the greenhouse.

If you have a hunt around the garden centres you should find metal brackets which have bolts which fit into the glazing bars of modern greenhouses.

There are silly packs of brackets and metal shelves which are far too small and expensive. A better idea is to buy the brackets and use wood for the shelves.

A bundle of six pressure-treated, four-inch wide, eight-feet long bits of sawn timber can be bought at Wickes for about a tenner – a quarter of the price of the pre-packed metal ones.

Another good idea, especially useful in the greenhouse with glazing right down to the ground, is to buy a staging kit in a box which you put together yourself.

The idea is to put the newly constructed bench on top of the original one so that twice as many plants can be accommodated in the greenhouse.

I can hear you saying this week’s gardening feature was disappointing because you don’t have room for a greenhouse because there is no room in the garden.

Oh yes there is! Do you have a wall? Of course you have, so have a look at wall frames. You can’t get inside them but they are brilliant for small gardens.

Seedlings in trays can be placed on the three shelves, 12 boxes in the frame, and after they are planted three tomatoes or a greenhouse

cucumber can be planted in a growing bag on the pathway for super crops in

summer.

Have a think about it and if you can invent that solar panel system which anyone can install, it would be

great to hear from you.

Imagine the interest there would be from commercial growers.

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