The wood greenhouse frame has enjoyed growing popularity in recent years. Although not as economical as many PVC or aluminum greenhouses, wood has eye-pleasing qualities that far outweigh the few disadvantages. Wood-framed greenhouses are strong, durable and can be made to look like extensions to a home. They do, however, require some basic maintenance.
Tip 1: Treat Wood
Wood is likely to rot due to its porous nature. If a timber frame greenhouse is your preferred choice of garden structure, make sure the wood is correctly treated. This will help minimize the damage that the sun, rain and wind can cause. Another option is to select cedar as your wood of choice. Cedar is very weather-resistant and although it will cost more, it will not need to be treated as frequently as other timber-framed greenhouses.
Tip 2: Check Glass and Frames
Keeping the glass clean is important for the aesthetic appeal and the effectiveness of the greenhouse but there are other reasons to make regular monthly checks. Rain and condensation are likely to run down the glass and into the frames. This needs to be cleared as dust and debris can settle in to the various edges and creases and these create points where rot can start to develop. Rot will slowly eat away at stain or varnish and seep into the wood. A simple monthly check to make sure glass panes are wiped clean of any dust piles should prove to be more than sufficient. These monthly checks will also allow you to spot any other potential hazards before they become serious problems.
Tip 3: A Good Bi-Annual Clean
Wood-framed greenhouses are usually treated with stain. This helps seal in the beauty of the wood as well as making it more resistant to the elements. Sadly, nothing lasts forever and eventually the stain will have to be recoated. A thorough cleaning, around twice a year, can help delay this. Simply clean the wood with warm water using old rags and sponges. Remove the dust and dirt to prevent debris piles from building up.
It is possible to use a mild detergent when cleaning but you will have to go over the panes of wood a second time to rinse. This process will keep the wood clean and prevent damage before it starts.
Tip 4: The Benefits of Sanding
It is possible that while cleaning the timber-framed greenhouse, some minor damage to either the frame or the treatment will be located. This is nothing to panic about and can be easily rectified with some fine grade sand paper. Wait until the wood is dry before sanding. Take the sandpaper and rub in the direction of the grain of the wood until stain or paint is removed and any small cracks have been feathered out.
If the wood is deeply damaged or rotted, you may have to cut out the offending piece and refill it with wood filler. This is a relatively simple process and fast remedial action will prevent the rot from spreading further.
Although not as durable as PVC or aluminum, wooden greenhouses have a fantastic charm and appeal. Some basic maintenance can help to prevent rot and preserve the visual appearance of your greenhouse for many years.