10 DIY Greenhouse Ideas for Your Backyard Garden - Backyard Boss
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10 DIY Greenhouse Ideas for Your Backyard Garden

Greenhouses are a must-have for every backyard gardener. This is especially true for places with short growing seasons. Germinating seeds early in the greenhouse before planting them in the ground gives your plants a head start. This can help to increase yields and will allow you to plant a wider variety of crops. Greenhouses also provide shelter from the weather and pests.

For tackling a DIY greenhouse, you are going to want to get out your whole toolbox. Saws, drills, level, measuring tape, and any other tools and materials you have. If you’re not into DIY, you can purchase the kits, but they can get pricey for the good-quality ones. With a bit of labor, you can save some money, and make a unique greenhouse.

Here are 10 DIY greenhouse ideas for your backyard garden.

1. Lean-to

Have you always envisioned your greenhouse along the side of your house? A lean-to-style greenhouse has many benefits including structural support, protection from the elements, and better insulation. In the winter, you may not even need to install a heater. A lean-to also allows you to take advantage of your exterior features. Build the greenhouse around your outdoor hose, sink, and electrical outlet. Have running water and electricity inside your greenhouse all year!

Since the house will be blocking the sun, it’s best to construct a lean-to greenhouse along a south-facing exterior wall.

2. Gable

gable greenhouse with plants in pots
Image credit: Annie Spratt via Unsplash

The gable-style greenhouse is your traditional greenhouse, taking up a decent chunk of your backyard. For an easy DIY, re-furbish an old shed into a greenhouse. You can use glass, polycarbonate panels, or plastic sheeting for the windows.

If you plan to garden over winter, run the ridge-line east to west. This will ensure the most light during the winter. If you will only be using it in the summer, running the ridge-line north to south will allow for an even spread of light during the growing season.

3. Hill or Uneven Span

Gardening on a hill can be tricky. If you’ve always wanted a greenhouse and thought you can’t because your property is on a slope, this is your solution. With wood, plastic sheeting, and a few extra measurements to get the angles right, you can construct your greenhouse on a hill. An uneven span greenhouse should be south or east-facing to maximize the sun.

4. Arched

Gothic arch greenhouses are architecturally beautiful if you are up for a little more work. Creating the curve from wood can be difficult, but for an easier solution, you can also use PVC piping. They are usually smaller in size, making them perfect for a small backyard garden. The nice thing about DIY is that you can extend any of these greenhouses to make them the size that works for you.

5. Hoop House

man surrounded by plants in a greenhouse
Image credit: Joao Jesus via Pexels

Hoop houses and tunnels are typically used to cover crops in the ground, but you can also modify this concept for a greenhouse. The hoop house is one of the easiest DIY greenhouses on this list. Once you have the wood frame in place, the PVC piping and plastic sheeting will bring it together in no time.

6. Umbrella

If your budget is tight, here’s a cheap option that requires zero tools. This creative solution goes to show that you can use many different objects and materials to build a greenhouse. Get your thinking hat on!

7. Box Cover

A garden box cover is often used as a cold frame. However, if you build it up higher, it can be used all year round. If you have existing raised beds, you can just build the cover. To build it from scratch, you’ll need wood, plastic sheeting, PVC piping, chain, and screws.

8. Geo Dome

geo dome
Image credit: Mitsubis via FreeImages

The geodome is by far the coolest-looking greenhouse on this list. It’s a stunning piece for your backyard that doesn’t take up a lot of space. Surprisingly, it’s not as hard to build as it looks. You can use wood or PVC for the frame, and plastic sheeting for the cover.

9. Plastic Bottle

Greenhouses can be constructed out of almost any glass or plastic. The plastic bottles that make up this greenhouse’s walls and the roof are truly unique. If you have a garage full of recyclables waiting to go to the depot, this might be the perfect project for you. Once you build a basic frame, the plastic bottles are attached with garden canes. You’ll want to use primarily clear bottles to maximize the light, but be creative with the placement of a few colored bottles. 

Everyone will want to come and take a tour of your one-of-a-kind greenhouse. They may even donate a bottle to the project.

10. Mini

mini greenhouse with lettuce
Image credit: Titosoft via Pixabay

If you don’t have a lot of space, you may be wanting to build a mini greenhouse. These are perfect for a deck or balcony. They are easy to construct with PVC piping and plastic sheeting.

If you have old windows, this could be a great way to repurpose them. You only need six windows, and it’s a great small project to try with glass.

Start Building!

There are many benefits of having a greenhouse. DIY greenhouses can be a lot of work, but it will be well worth the time and effort. It’s also significantly cheaper to build them yourself. Repurposing materials is a great way to save money and create a unique design.

Which DIY greenhouse do you want to build? Let us know in the comments!