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Old 26.09.2017, 11:31
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All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

Howdy

Is there a thread for this already? I couldn't see one.

The goal of having a farm has not yet materialised but I am keen to start a small scale operation.

I have a number of huge planters I am going to clear of the ugly Thuja and utilise for vegetables and herbs etc but want to get a modest sized greenhouse to assist me.

I realise approaching winter is perhaps not the ideal time to embark on this but I need to get some planning in to get cracking by late winter / early spring with the hardy veg that will be late moved outside. With finding, building, assessing space and starting seedlings I think now is the time to plan

So I need to find a greenhouse,? understand any rules / laws on this type of thing (there must be some Swiss annoyance for this)? beginner trappings? any tips fellow growers can share of their experiences?

I plan to grow wide range of herbs and spices, and try my hand at tomatoes, peppers, scallions and some fruits.

Cheers
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Old 26.09.2017, 11:48
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

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Howdy

Is there a thread for this already? I couldn't see one.
There is a gardening thread. Here

With regards to a greenhouse, I was unreliably informed recently that you need planning permission for one.
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Old 26.09.2017, 11:56
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

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I realise approaching winter is perhaps not the ideal time to embark on this but I need to get some planning in to get cracking by late winter / early spring with the hardy veg that will be late moved outside. With finding, building, assessing space and starting seedlings I think now is the time to plan
Autumn was always my busiest time in the garden in the UK...

http://www.gardenersworld.com/what-t...klist/october/
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Old 26.09.2017, 11:59
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

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There is a gardening thread. Here

With regards to a greenhouse, I was unreliably informed recently that you need planning permission for one.
Thanks

I see that thread but was more generic gardening and a hell of a lot of pages about very little. I'll try some Google power searches for greenhouse specific

Planning permission???? Yikes, this won't be that big or block anyone's view. The only person who could see it is if my neighbour looks down over her terrace or people on boats on the lake.

I will of course clear with landlord but where does one get official laws on this? Gemeinde or?
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Old 26.09.2017, 12:05
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

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I will of course clear with landlord but where does one get official laws on this? Gemeinde or?

Gemeinde.

If you get no luck with permission, you could always get a couple of cold frames instead - that's what I did.
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Old 26.09.2017, 12:09
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

Found this link which I'm digging into now

https://www.gartenhaus.ch/magazin/nachbarrecht-schweiz/

I should think this would be OK as it's not going to block, damage or impede. Thinking of something like this

https://www.otto.de/p/konifera-gewae...onId=543720537
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Old 26.09.2017, 12:10
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

First, go to your local Bauamt to discuss regulations around putting up a greenhouse. Depending on the size and structure you may need a building permit - and depending on your neighbors, property size, etc you might not be allowed to put one up at all. But a little creativity and you can easily do something within the regs that will not require a permit.

Those temporary plastic sheet on a collapsable frame thingies are generally always allowed. (They are useless in our cold, rainy, ca 800m mini climate, though...)

So - once you understand the regs specific to your property and what you wish to build, the best places to look for materials are IMO Landi and Hornbach. (If a farm is your ultimate goal, get to know the local Landi folks!)

If you are at all handy (which I assume you are if a farm is a goal) a greenhouse is easy to build yourself. Build a frame, attach plexiglas sheeting, consider ventilation in your design. One word of caution, though: sometimes the materials to build from scratch will cost more than a kit; depending on what you want/need, run the costs first.

When all the tools and materials needed for OH's Tomatenhüsli* are figured in, those are some mighty epensive tomatoes.

* Re: Tomatoes: Look around at your neighbors gardens. Do they all grow tomatoes under a roof? In my area it's a must due to the amount of rain. Hence a Tomatenhüsli, a structure with a roof, no sides. Speak to neighbors, use the collective local garden wisdom.

In our cold rainy climate the growing season is too short many years, mid-June through end August. If you have similar think about a heat source for your greenhouse if you are going to plant from seed. A built-in heat souce generally changes a temporary construction into something that requires a permit, keep that in mind. There are lots of temporary heating solutions to get around that, but think about fire risk.

Winter is the perfect time to start your project. Work on permits, buttering-up neighbors, figuring out your design, do the construction now so that come late spring you are ready to plant. Spring will break your heart here, with early heat followed by disastrous snow. The more ready you are to get going once the changeable weather is passed, the better off you will be.

---

If you neighbors are not gardeners, put on the charm in order to head off their objection. Our little village, where hobby gardening used to be the favorite local sport, has changed from a farming community to a wanna-be Zürich Steuerflüchtlinge suburb. Many of our new-but-influential neighbors don't like to see 'real' gardening, I guess anything that leads to dirt under the fingernails is a bit too déclassé for their sensibilities. So they launch objections over anything other than a designer rock garden. We are having a difficult time trying to continue hobby gardening against changing neighborhood norms.

So again, look to what your neighbors have done. If what you want to do is in line with what others have done you are likely good to go, fewer worries about neighbors stopping your garden plans.

OH, and as you are planning, think compost. Tip: raised beds, which help immensely to combat the killer slugs, can double as compost finishing bins.

---

I'm drying kilos of tomatoes, drying herbs, freezing various pestos, canning jalapeños and escabeche, fermenting hot sauce, I put up about dozens of jars of jam, as well as enjoyed a bounty of fresh fruit and veg. All in my tiny postage stamp of a garden in a fairly difficult climate. Nothing so soul-satisfying as a hobby garden.

----

Good luck, and get thee to a Landi! Or Hornbach.
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Old 26.09.2017, 12:44
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

Thank you very much, as helpful and informative as ever.

Whilst I do have a reasonable amount of space to play with, am wary of having a huge structure, looking at a smallish size as per link above, something I can stand and move around in but not much bigger than 2m x 2m floor space

Maybe I'm too optimistic but I do get a lot of sun on my terrace (providing there is sun of course),l. But yes have considered requiring heat matts and using rocks and black water barrels to aid heat retention. The greenhouse will also sit flush with my apartment wall which should help for heat too I'm thinking.

Neighbours all grow just flowers and herbs I think , no structures like I'm thinking , and ground level have a garden they don't do much with. But the building is like a pyramid with our terraces facing outward to the lake, where the sun rises and hits us most of the day (hence my optimism). So we don't see each others space as such in our natural view, which is why I'm thinking there should be little issue, as the only way it is seen is if the above neighbour chooses to look down, even then it will be flush to the apartment wall, and a small size in comparison to the total space outside (65m2).

But I'll make sure to verify all of these regs and potential objections before purchasing anything.
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Last edited by JBZ86; 26.09.2017 at 12:49. Reason: Size edit
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Old 26.09.2017, 13:03
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

JBZ, if the green house will be built on a terrace, check also with the building management as well as the Bauamt.

There are often in-house regulations above and beyond the Bauamt, especially structures on terraces. (For instance, friends were told to take their children's playhouse down, although the Bauamt wouldn't care, anything taller than the terrace railing was not allowed by the in-house regs.)

As to heat retention:

We grow chilis successfully here, something we shouldn't be able to do in our climate, because we have set the planters on our black granite patio, in front of our black granite terraced beds so they are surrounded on two sides with heat-absorbing stone. If your terrace can take the weight (and there are no building reg issues), using stone pots placed on and against a stone backdrop is an easy and effective way to ensure enough heat.

We start seed inside in a grow frame heated with a reptile mat and grow light. (Cheap at Hornbach IIRC) then harden the seedlings outside in the cold frame.

A simple candle lantern, the kind you'd put on a grave, is also a good heat source in a cold frame if you can ensure there is no risk of fire. Do be very aware of fire risk.

Be aware that 3m x 3m is huge. Our neighbor objected to 2m x 2m, as was his right under regs here. YMMV. You might think about two structures, each under the permit-required dimensions... IME, height is the usual thing that sets neighbors off rather than width or length.

As I can't build a real greenhouse I have cold frames over the raised beds, creating mini-greenhouses. Does the trick.


ETA: Just saw your revised size. Still check on 2x2, allowed dimensions will vary.


Happy gardening!

Last edited by meloncollie; 26.09.2017 at 13:34.
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Old 26.09.2017, 14:23
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

More thoughts, as on this cold dreary day when it's too wet to work outside I've turned my mind to planning for next year...

One of my favorite places for inspiration is Meier Gartencenter in Dürnten, in the ZH Oberland:
https://www.meier-ag.ch/cms/gartence...rn-im-Hochbeet

They have a number of show gardens planted, including lots of info on container gardening. You might pop by, see what ideas they might inspire.

Not the least expensive plant source, but the quality and selection are outstanding. I buy my more pedestrian plants at Landi, Hornbach, Coop B/H, and with the savings treat myself to special things from Meier each year. A good source for the less common herbs, by the way.

They have a great newsletter, 'Pflanzenfreund', that comes out monthly. Lots of useful tips. It's my wish book.

If you are into growing fruit, also look into Haeberi Beeren, a Swiss producer. Their plants can be found at area retailers, do take a look at their planting guides:
https://www.haeberli-beeren.ch/de/kulturanleitungen-15

And ideas for terrace gardening:
https://www.haeberli-beeren.ch/de/pr...n-und-terrasse

My long ago next door neighbor, back when I lived on the sunny side of the lake (oh how I miss those days!), was a master of small space gardening. Her terrace would put most Swiss farms to shame.

She did a lot of verticle gardening, something you might consider. Think climbing or hanging strawberries, training fruit into an espalier against walls (good heat retention), using columnar fruit trees as outdoor living space dividers, training berry canes and grape vines along balcony rails, as well as the usual étager pots, container, and planter arrangements. She made everything do double duty, edibles as artful garden arrangements. Her terrace and gardens were a marvel.


And now back to cleaning up my mistakes in this year's garden...

Last edited by meloncollie; 26.09.2017 at 14:40.
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Old 26.09.2017, 16:05
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

If you are space-limited you could also consider using aeroponics towers or hydroponics. It's more efficient (uses less water, grows faster, less parasites/weeds) but it requires some work initially. It cuold be fun if you like building stuff.
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Old 26.09.2017, 16:23
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Re: All Greenthumbs - Greenhouse tips - where to buy, things to consider

If it is really in a very sunny spot, check the need for ventilation and/or blinds of some sort.
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