Installing your greenhouse on a soil site
This is our recommended option as any excess water inside the greenhouse (you will be sloshing lots of it about whilst watering your plants) will easily drain away. The greenhouse is easy to secure – simply dig a hole at each corner and concrete the ground anchors into position once you have completed glazing. If you are in a windy spot, dig your holes a little deeper and use a bit more concrete.
Installing your greenhouse on hardstanding
The base will sit directly onto a level hardstanding such as concrete or paving slabs. No need to use the ground anchors with this method, just drill through the bottom lip of the base and anchor the greenhouse down with screws or bolts. Beware of this method in a windy area as the strength of the greenhouse will depend on the screw fixing.
Traditionally greenhouses have been glazed with this, the cheapest glass available, supplied in small overlapping panes. Over the last 10 years we have witnessed a trend away from horticultural glass towards the much safer toughened glass.
Toughened glass small pane
This is the most popular Elite glazing option. The relatively small (up to 2ft x 2ft) panes are easy to carry, fit and indeed replace. Toughened glass will withstand a far greater impact than horticultural glass – a blunt blow such as a ball hitting it will not normally break it. But it is personal safety that is the biggest reason for specifying toughened glass. Children or gardeners of any age can trip in the confined space of a greenhouse and fall into the glass. When toughened glass breaks it crumbles into hundreds of small pieces, whilst these are still sharp, they are not long dangerous shards.
Toughened glass large pane
This has all the benefits as described above but in taller panes, reducing the number of overlaps.
Although popular on the Continent, polycarbonate has never really taken off in the UK. It has the advantage that it is better insulated than glass, being constructed with twin walls with a gap between them. Polycarbonate will also provide a diffused light which could be beneficial during bright summer sunshine. Polycarbonate is also very light and therefore easy to handle. There are some disadvantages to polycarbonate. Being lightweight we would not recommend it for windy areas. Being plastic the surface attracts dirt and encourages algae, reducing light levels inside the greenhouse (not a problem in the summer but a different story in the autumn, winter and early spring months). Polycarbonate also suffers from condensation between the layers, further reducing light transmission and encouraging algae to form.
Stainless steel clips
Stainless steel clips are bent and clipped into the frame to retain the glass in place under tension. With small pane glazing (horticultural or toughened glass) the panes will overlap using “Z” clips. With the large pane toughened glass option, the “Z” clips are usually not required.
Used in addition to spring clips and in conjunction with large pane glazing (glass or polycarbonate) only. Whilst it gives an additional hold on the glazing, bar capping is primarily a cosmetic addition which clips onto the glazing bars to hide the individual clips and enhance the overall appearance of the greenhouse. It can be coloured to tone with a powdercoat painted greenhouse.
All Elite models feature diagonal bracing as standard. Higher and larger models such as the High Eave, Belmont, Supreme and Classique also have additional eaves cantilever bracing for extra strength.
1. Reducing heat
This is best achieved by ensuring that the greenhouse has an adequate number of roof vents.
2. Air circulation
Humid, stagnant air encourages disease. Fitting louvre vents let cooler air circulate and force the hot air out of the roof vents.
The temperature inside the greenhouse will vary greatly throughout the day (even in early Spring the temperature can quickly soar), requiring the vents to be constantly adjusted. Add solar powered automatic vent openers to maintain a more constant temperature (even a cloud passing overhead will cause the autovent to close a little - you couldn't possibly achieve this degree of control yourself).
All Elite freestanding greenhouses have well made end sliding doors with good entry heights. Depending on the model, these can be either be converted to double doors or augmented with extra end doors. With the exception of the Easygrow and Windsor ranges, Elite leantos feature sufficient height to place doors at either the end or on the front of the unit.
Frame is initially bright and shiny but with time gains a surface oxidised layer giving the greenhouse a familiar duller, matt appearance.
An attractive finish which is hard wearing and provides protection for many years. The aluminium extrusions undergo a multi-stage cleaning and preparation process and are sprayed with the coloured powder. They are then heated to approximately 200 degrees centigrade in specially designed ovens which melt the powder and fuse it to the surface of the aluminium forming a highly durable, resilient and smooth maintenance free coating. The colour is deep and lustrous and resistant to scratching, chipping and UV degradation.
All Elite models feature a gutter which is incorporated into the aluminium eave section of the greenhouse.
These are an option for all Elite greenhouses. A choice of different fittings is available to enable rainwater to be channelled and collected either from each gutter separately or into one point.