Can you live in your house without a heater on winter days in places like Antarctica?
Ask the same question to your greenhouse plants, whose answer would also probably be the same as yours! The greenhouse is a home for your plants to live in any situation, just as we humanists need a house to dwell and survive.
One of the crucial ingredients for the greenhouse to make it ever sustainable for plants in winter is the heater.
And, our today’s article is all about the heater regarding the growth of your greenhouse plants.
Can Your Plants Live in a Greenhouse Without a Heater?
For beginner-level gardeners, it might seem impossible to grow greenhouse plants during winter without any added heat protections like a heater. But, as one of the unique features of the greenhouse, it also has the solution to this problem.
But that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to do anything and grow the plants as you do during summer. That is to say; you can increase some of the best selective plants by taking specific initiatives. Some of those are listed down for your convenience:
Making compost inside the greenhouse
If you are engaged with any gardening works, then you indeed have at least a little idea about compost. These are a combination of various waste products of the plants that ultimately turn into natural fertilizers. Different dried leaves, barks of trees, stems, and wood chips or mulches work best as compost.
Compost works best for storing and releasing heat. These fertilizers are suitable for all sorts of weather conditions and even inside the greenhouse. Even compost can be the ultimate initiative to use in the greenhouse during winter.
The heat and temperature during the daytime are captured by compost. As a result, the temperature of a well-established compost can be up to 100° Fahrenheit when supplied regularly with oxygen. This works for the plants during cold nights by providing that captured energy.
Utilizing the thermal massy objects
Solar energy is one of the economic and reasonable alternatives to non-renewable energy. With this, you can also grow your plants in your greenhouse during cold winter days without worrying about extra expenses and fuel.
And, the best thing for it can be utilizing thermal masses. Thermal mass helps by absorbing heat during hot weather and releasing them while the surrounding is cold. This is the main feature of thermal massy objects. Examples of such materials are heavy rocks, pebbles, stones, bricks, clays, etc.
Even you can’t underestimate water which also acts as great thermal mass. So, next time while preparing the beds for your plants inside the greenhouse, don’t forget to put such objects like using stones around them.
As a result, your greenhouse will be able to control the temperature even in the worst weather condition.
Insulating the north side
All of us know that there remains no point in hoping for the sunshine from the northern hemisphere. That is also applicable for the north corner of your greenhouse, where the sun will never hit. So, there also remains no point in keeping that side opened or glassed.
Instead, the best thing that could be done for your northern side of the greenhouse is to insulate it. As a result, no captured heat can run away from that corner, preventing the case from exacerbating.
Also, you can improve by putting the thermal masses in that corner so that they absorb some extra light.
Double upping the windows
Double upping the windows is another great trick for keeping your greenhouse heated. It’s just as simple as the real-life task you do while preventing your home from the intolerable cold.
During cold days, you use a double-layered window shield to make your house protected from external cold environments. Although a greenhouse is not a place for you to live, it is the house of thousands of Species of plants to fit and survive.
So, you also have the full responsibility to allow the best sort of environment for their dwelling, which can be done by setting a double window. The windows will capture heat when the temperature is warm and won’t release the heat when the weather is cool.
Reflecting the sun’s heat and light
Like the northern side of your greenhouse, there also remains the southern part of it where you can add an evolution to supply your plants with more light and heat.
One such thing can be done by reflecting the sunlight directly into your plants. And, for this purpose, white reflecting color or reflecting material like tins can be used. Adjust white paint to the southern side or place containers to reflect the light towards your plants.
In this way, even during winters, your plants will be enabled with more lights.
Sinking your greenhouse
The deeper you go inside the heart, the more is the temperature. There remains no need to tell that the environment inside the soil is much warmer compared to the earth’s atmosphere. And, it is more applicable when the atmosphere remains cool during the winters.
At that time, a sure difference between the earth and the outer environment is seen. So, it is not a bad idea to sink your greenhouse deeper inside. Sink the floor of your greenhouse below the frost line. In this way, you can moderate and valance the temperature of your plant beds inside your greenhouse.
Installing beds that are power-free
Although you cannot wholly establish a power-free winter-tolerant bed, you can control the scenario to too many extents.
One such all-time best alternative is to use solar pipes for heating the water. You can coil these pumps on the middle of the heap of your compost. As a result, the line will capture heat from the compost, also heat the water.
The heated water can generate temperature from inside the soil to the plant’s beds in cold seasons. Through the process, it can help to keep the plants sustained for a definite time.
Which Plants to Grow in Your Unheated Greenhouse During Winter?
When you have a seamless greenhouse system with all the necessary precautions, initiatives, and expenses, your plants are ready to be explored in any weather conditions. But, of course, that also leaves no problem to grow any plants, even in shivering cold winters.
But, when you plan for low-cut cultivation through a less-resourced greenhouse, you need to keep certain things in mind. For example, such a greenhouse cannot have the perfect artificial temperature-controlling agent that includes an electric heater during winters.
Those type of greenhouse is the ones that are used to grow plants for the least money because there come additional expenses when you need to incorporate a temperature controller and therefore to yield extra energy charges and bills.
After all these, you are indeed left with the good news that you can grow your plants with many advantages even in your unheated greenhouse. Moreover, those advantages are far more compared to the traditional method of cultivation.
One of those few big things for a low-end unheated greenhouse is to cultivate winter-selective plants. Always make sure to choose cold-tolerant plants that are more suitable for winter seasons rather than summer. It may seem like one of the contradictory points to cultivate only some selective plants in your greenhouse.
But, that’s not the case as you’ll be finding no trouble the whole year round except the winter in cultivating your desired plants. You like to play with your greenhouse system by not providing the required greenhouse inputs, so you need to compromise a little, especially during winter.
Cold-temperate plants like spinach and different types of vegetables can be your prime sector of selection. Take broccoli, lettuce, cabbage, peas, celery, and Brussels sprout into consideration.
Also, don’t hesitate to ensure the root plants for your greenhouse during the winter. Because inside the soil, the temperature automatically remains comparatively higher. So, no more additional efforts are required.
In the end, greenhouse plants can’t survive during the winter season without a proper heating system. Therefore, as green growers, we must ensure proper growth conditions of plants, especially for tougher conditions.