A Guide to choosing a greenhouse for your garden

Whatever the time of year, having a greenhouse in your garden is an absolute blessing. From getting a head start on Spring sowing to overwintering tender plants during the colder months, a greenhouse is a must-have for any keen gardener.

But What options are available and what is the best greenhouse for my garden? We’ve compiled this useful guide to help you decide!

Aluminium greenhouses

No longer are aluminium greenhouses just boring utilitarian boxes. The lightweight and durable metal structures are available in a range of colours, and there are limitless sizes and shapes available.

Robinsons Greenhouses even offer an entire range of Victorian-style greenhouses that will suit any top-of-the-range garden, whilst giving the benefits of a rugged, modern aluminium construction, toughened glass and powder coated finishes to really look special.

Timber Greenhouses

Red Cedar:

The experienced gardeners amongst you will know that a red cedar timber greenhouse is an ideal choice for your plants and garden. The general consensus being that red cedar is the best wood for a greenhouse frame with its self-oiling properties, lack of knots and its resistance to contortion.

Greenhouses made from red cedar tend to be warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, making for a better growing environment than aluminium ones. Wooden greenhouses have recognizable practical advantages over aluminium greenhouses – for example it is easy to fix hooks, screws and wires to the framework for training plants and so on.

Cedar is a deterrent to pests, and its oily properties in particular aid in reducing the occurrence of plant disease within the greenhouse, making it an ideal choice for use in a garden setting and much less needs in terms of maintenance compared to other softwoods. It also offers excellent insulation properties and helps to maintain a constant internal temperature, providing better conditions for healthy plant growth and reducing condensation.

Another advantage a red cedar greenhouse has over aluminium is that it looks more natural and is much more attractive. It can easily become a major ‘feature’ in your garden. Over time, the cedar acquired a silvery grey patina and the greenhouse complements the surrounding garden.


Whilst cedar is an incredible choice for that natural, bare-wood finish, it is a more expensive option and should not be painted. But what if you want a painted finish?

Pressure treated Redwood will give you longevity, and a wide range of painted finishes and designs will allow you to choose the ideal greenhouse for your garden. From lean to’s and potting sheds to grand Victorian models, Redwood greenhouses may not be as expensive as their cedar counterparts but the options are numerous.

We offer the full range of British made Swallow Greenhouses which are delivered and installed nationwide.

Positioning Your Greenhouse

Generally speaking, free standing greenhouses are best positioned with the ridge running from east to west. Where possible, try to keep well away from roads, trees and play areas (for obvious reasons!).

Accessibility is a major factor well worth consideration too, as you will want to be able to nip out to your greenhouse regularly. With this in mind, we would recommend keeping it as close to the house as possible. This will also be advantageous if you require power and water within, as well as hauling your bumper crops of vegetables into the kitchen later in the growing season.

Healthy Living

In these days of soaring food prices, the ‘grow your own’ campaign has taken off with a vengeance, so where better to start your own quest for healthy and tasty food than in your very own greenhouse? You don’t need artificial heat to achieve great results, and you’ll be growing and harvesting your own crops for a lot less than they will cost you are the supermarket, and organically too if you so wish!

Extend your growing season

Even with an unheated greenhouse you can extend your growing season at both ends, starting off crops early and ensuring that more tender plants get a head start against garden-sown equivalents. It’s the perfect way to start early vegetables such as beans and peas, protecting them from the elements inside the greenhouse and making sure they are ready to plant out sooner into the garden.

Once you’ve got a crop of salads, tomatoes and an array of herbs, fruit and vegetables, they will keep on growing for much longer in the protection of the greenhouse warmth. You’ll be wowing your friends at Christmas with the last of your summer tomatoes, new potatoes harvested straight from the greenhouse and all manner of other out of season, tasty leaves and delicacies!