Indoor garden greenhouses are awesome, and they are one of the hottest items around right now because of so many things like; people wanting a food source they can trust in these trying times. Others want to grow flowers so they can mentally recharge from what’s going on.
It’s hard to argue with which one is more important these days, physical or mental health, they are both under such a trying onslaught as may have never been seen before in modern history.
If you’re growing for the mental relief, make sure to grow the things that put you in awe. For me that would be orchids. They have varieties that look like white doves, ballerinas and some that look like the stars in the night sky. They put me in a state of awe and wonder every time I look at them.
Find something that really does it for you and stick with that. I know a lady who’s so into succulents that you couldn’t believe it. She has several very rare, amazing varieties that are so cool to look at, it’s incredible.
If you’re wanting an indoor greenhouse to grow food, then you came to the right spot as well.
With all that’s going on in the world at the moment you’d be hard pressed to find a better use of your time and energy than ensuring you have whole raw foods at your disposal whenever you really need them.
Because there may come a time very soon, when you do ‘really need them’.
The focus of this unique article is very different than traditional articles that just start at square one and boringly walk you through a tutorial that you can just get on YouTube for free.
There are hundreds of those, and this isn’t just another one.
Instead, we took the time to look all over the internet to find all the questions that people have about indoor greenhouse growing and put all the answers to your questions in one spot.
So, be sure to read each of the sub-headlines because most people find they had several questions that they always wanted to know but just couldn’t put them to words.
We hope you love your guide to Indoor Garden Greenhouses as much as we did writing it for you!
What If You Just Want A Small Indoor Garden Greenhouse?
That’s fine, you can get them as kits or build them in virtually any size you want. We have seen really cool looking tabletop indoor greenhouses that really made the room look amazing as well.
Heck, you can go all the way down to terrarium and have an indoor greenhouse that looks cool and grows pretty much whatever you want – just micro sized.
That is the one thing you really do have to take into consideration, what do you want to grow? If you’re looking at a few herbs, you could likely get away with a terrarium sized indoor greenhouse or maybe a tabletop size could work as well for you.
However, if you’re going to go for it and grow a full-sized tomato plant and we aren’t talking cherry tomatoes here either, then you’re going to need a proper stand up model that can handle your growing needs.
For your type of growing, you’re going to want to get a full height stand up model that can be a cabinet model, a glass walled model, a tent model or any one of several other indoor greenhouse configurations.
Virtually each of these indoor greenhouse models will have a kit available with some like the tent model being relatively cheap to build.
Not to worry, all but the most elaborate can be assembled in an afternoon with two people or a day if it’s just one person building it out.
Should I Build A Cabinet Model Indoor Greenhouse?
These cabinet models can be quite beautiful with their fantastic looking wooden frames and glass panels that catch all the light from nearly every angle. You can get as intricate or go as plain as you like, there really are no limits in either direction.
Some of the really well-done wood famed cabinet model indoor greenhouses look so good that they become heirloom furniture pieces that can be passed down from generation to generation.
The actual decision of why you’ll need a cabinet VS other greenhouse style comes down to how you want it to look in your home and how many and what variety of plants do you want to grow?
Let’s say that you’d like a few indoor tomatoes, a few super juicy strawberries and you just love unbruised and unbitten green beans so you can French cut them fresh into all sorts of dishes.
Then, yes, a cabinet model will do just fine for you. If you’d like to grow several more plants, then we might suggest either a bigger model or 2 cabinet models.
Two cabinet model indoor greenhouses can look really amazing with them facing both ends of a sliding glass door or another workable window space.
They offset each other so that you don’t just see one but a pair instead. It can look quite nice.
If you’re not into the wooden esthetic, then you can build a metal cabinet greenhouse that has that stainless and glass type of look. We saw one that had the frame in a high gloss black with the glass panels that looked really attractive.
It’s mostly going to have to do with the decor of your home.
What About An Indoor Garden Greenhouse Cabinet With Lights?
Some of that is going to depend on whether you mean decorative lights or grow lights? If you mean decorative then white or colored lights work really well. LED lighting strips can be multi-colored and controlled with a remote.
You can have decorative lights that go in rhythm with the music so you can play pieces that have shown to help plants grow and have the lights play along as well.
If you’re talking about grow lights, then you’re going to want to check into the amount of light and heat they give off.
You can’t just flood the space with too much light, you’ll damage the plants.
You’ll also need to think about what type of ventilation system you’ll need to install to keep the enclosure within the right temperature ranges.
When you visit our links to the best growing products, they will have charts there for you. The reason we don’t put them here is that they change all the time with the size of indoor greenhouse and the types of bulbs, ballasts and other pieces used.
The thing you also need to do if using grow lights is look at how much light do the plants you’re growing actually need? Corn has different needs than tomatoes or cucumbers.
Is the sunlight sufficient and do you really need to subsidize the light?
There are quite a few variables, however, you’ll be able to find most of those charts on Google, or just ask the clerks when you call to order.
Should I Get My Indoor Garden Greenhouse With Lights?
Let’s presume you mean with growing lights and not decorative lights. Then what you need to do is run through this little check list of things to think about before you make your light purchase.
1. How much light do you need to subsidize? I.E. How much light do the plants you want to grow need, not all plants are the same. And, how much light at different times of the year does the growing environment provide.
Then minus the provided light from the needed light and you’ll have the net light needed to grow those particular plants.
2. Next look at the square areas of your growing space and how many lights do you need to cover that space to fill it with the needed light from #1 above.
These are pretty simple calculations but are necessary to get it right and not kill the plants with too much light or heat while giving them enough to flourish.
Then, in our opinion, get a bigger light system than you need and just use it less. There are several reasons for this. A). if you ever want to grow other types of plants you now have a lighting system that most likely can do that. B). A lighting system that doesn’t have to work at or near capacity all the time will last longer and not have as many issues with overheating.
Should I DIY My Indoor Garden Greenhouse?
Yes and no. If you’re a super handy type of person who loves to build things then heck yeah, have at it. If you know better and know that even though you might like to, building it on your own is not likely the best idea, then you should go with a kit.
Truthfully, even if you are quite the builder, the kits have everything you need instead of piecemealing it together with parts from here and there they deliver it right to your door.
One of the things you’ll find is that when you build one of these on your own, the types of materials, the hose sizes, the fan sizes etc. Are not what they typically carry at your local hardware store.
So, you end up just ordering it piece by piece and then ordering all the pieces you didn’t order or get right the first time.
Then, depending on the materials you decided to build it out of, cutting and scoring some of them such as certain glass and plastic types can be a real eye-opening experience to say the least.
If all this sounds like more fun than a barrel full of monkeys, then you just might want to build it on your own. You might just be that type of a guy. Which is cool, hats off to you.
But for most people, trust us, get the kit.
Can I Convert An Entire Room Into An Indoor Greenhouse?
Sure, you can, there are a few things you need to take into consideration that we will list below, however, this can be one of the best methods as it can really utilize the space effectively and produce quite a bit of food as well.
The things you really need to be aware of are.
1. Drainage: You need water to grow plants, the buckets, tubs or trays you grow them in need to drain out any excess water.
There are pre-made drainage kits you can buy that are modular and can be expanded to cover just about any size area you have.
They may be your best bet, because when you’re dealing with water the last thing you want is to wake up 6 months or a year in and find it’s been leaking for a month without you’re knowing of it.
Plus, it’s not just watering, it’s what to do with all the drain water the plants don’t soak up.
2. Ventilation: You’re going to need circulating air to give the plants the carbon they need in the air.
The greenhouses tend to build up heat and if you’re using additional lighting the heat build up will need to be dissipated as well.
Always over think your watering and ventilation systems for indoor greenhouses because they are your two biggest inputs and eliminations from the equation.
3. Watering: You’ll need a system of delivering water to the plants on a regular basis. You could just water them every day with any number of manual devices.
However, what happens when you want to leave for a week or two.
It’s for this reason and for consistency, not forgetting and more, that an automatic watering system seems like it would be the best.
As we’ve said above, always over think your watering and ventilation systems. If you’re going to have problems, it’s typically going to be with one of these.
So, over plan for it in the beginning and be happier in the end.
4. Lighting: If you’re going to use an entire room as an indoor greenhouse you may not be able to light the entire space with natural light.
You can install as many skylights as possible and maybe even some parabolic sun tubes which can help a tremendous amount. However, depending upon the plants you want to grow these methods may not provide enough light.
If that’s the case, then you’re going to need a relatively small indoor lighting system that you use for supplemental light.
In Conclusion: Yes, you absolutely can convert an entire room into an indoor greenhouse, just take the above checklist seriously and you should do fine.
Are Indoor Greenhouse Tents The Way To Go?
Indoor greenhouse tents can work pretty well providing you think about the following few items when making your decision to go with a greenhouse tent VS a greenhouse cabinet or similar system.
1. Moisture Exchange: Tent’s don’t typically seal very well and tend to allow a lot of moisture to pass through them in what’s called an exchange.
2. Condensation: This can facilitate condensation around the rest of the house which will collect and drip. This can be a serious problem depending on where it’s collecting and dripping.
3. Mold: With uncontained moisture comes mold. You will constantly be fighting the mold unless you first control the moisture exchange from your greenhouse tent.
Buying mold killers won’t work until the moisture problems are resolved.
Not only that, but you really don’t want to be overusing mold killers in the first place as they too can kill your plants, harm animals and even you.
One of the ways you can help control moisture and condensation build up is to have a great ventilation system that moves the air through with enough volume that it moves the moist air before it settles.
If you are thinking that you’ll likely have some mold problems, then you may want to look at either a closed cabinet greenhouse system or possibly one that sits on the patio or a balcony greenhouse.
Because they are outside, they won’t cause the challenges with molds. However, BECAUSE they are outside, they also have several other problems that you have to deal with and weigh to see which is most tolerable.
What Indoor Garden Greenhouse Plants Work Best?
The whole point of having an indoor garden greenhouse is so that you can grow just about whatever you want. So, most plants that you can grow in any greenhouse will work just fine.
That being said, there are a few that do considerably better in an indoor greenhouse than in an outdoor greenhouse, here are a few you might want to think about.
Ground Creepers: This will encompass most of your vine type plants such as zucchini, cucumbers, squashes as well as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and the like.
The reason is that in this amazing, enclosed environment they don’t have to deal with their normal pests that like to feed on them.
You can control the amount of sun they get each day and whether that’s direct or indirect and you control their water.
This means that you’ll be able to dial it in to get the best results ever with these types of plants.
Supported Plants: These will be the ones where you may see them best growing on trellises that help support the weight of their fruiting bodies.
Quite likely the most famous of these will be tomatoes whose fruits are very water rich and so quite heavy for the plant to support once they begin to ripen.
The others in this category can be but not limited to, eggplant, bell peppers, grapes and vine growing tangerines.
Other Plants? Of course, you can grow other types of plants, the limit is only really based upon what your favorites are or what your imagination can come up with. The number and variety of plants that you can grow in such a controlled and safe environment for them is unbelievable.
You’ll really never, ever have to worry about running out of ideas of things to grow, you’ll run out of space long before you encroach upon that mark.
Should I Buy An Indoor Garden Greenhouse Kit?
For most people this is absolutely going to be the way to go. There are so many reasons we could write a book. So, instead of a book, here are just a few.
1. Unless you’re really handy and actually enjoy building things than a kit might be your best option.
2. If you do it yourself then you need to realize that most of the parts that are designed for this industry (the greenhouse industry) are specialized. They are not going to be your general hardware parts in many cases.
They typically use fans that are not ones that you can just go down and buy. The same is going to be true for many of the parts.
In other words, you may have a hard time sourcing everything you need at your local hardware store.
3. Their controllers (digitized control systems) are not going to be anything you’ve likely delt with before. They can be in many cases unique to their industry and may throw you for a loop attempting to integrate them with other non-specific systems that you may have picked up locally.
4. if you don’t have quite a few tools already in your collection and will end up having to go buy them to do the job, then you might want to evaluate whether that’s worth it or not.
If you have to go spend more money in tools than the greenhouse kit costs that you know you may never need again, then that might just be a time to stop and ponder.
In Conclusion: If these things cause you to have to stop and think about it, then a kit is likely going to be the best choice for you.
Or, at least a kit for the first one and if you decide to build another, then you can make that call at that time.
What Is The Best Indoor Greenhouse Garden To Build?
Well, that’s very similar to asking what kind of house do I need? There are way too many variables to answer that without asking; do you want to have a family live there or just you? How many kids? In-laws? Country or city? What’s your favorite style and of course many more.
So, to answer what the best indoor garden greenhouse is, will necessitate a few of the same types of questions to be asked.
1. How much space do you have available? Are you building this as a small greenhouse to stay next to a window, a very small tabletop version, a full room indoor greenhouse or what?
One of the biggest dictates will of course be, how much room do you have?
2. The next question is, what exactly do you want to grow? It’s a very different thing growing corn vs strawberries or grapes vs oranges.
You’ll need to know what you’d like to grow and plan your indoor greenhouse around that.
3. The third major point is, how much sun access do you have and are you going to be subsidizing with artificial lighting or not?
If you’re able to get a lot of sun throughout the year, then you’re going to have a lot more leeway as to the type of structure you can build.
If you’re limited to light, are you going to build the structure to maximize it or rely on extra lighting sources?
The two will naturally dictate completely different greenhouse styles.
4. Do you have access to drainage? How are you going to drain the excess water?
5. How will you water the plants? By yourself daily? With an automatic watering system?
6. What about ventilation? You will soon find that you need to move air through the space to feed the plants what they need and to keep humidity and mold in check.
You’ll need to plan out your ventilation before selecting the types of greenhouses your even selecting from?
In Conclusion: You really need to take into consideration the above challenges before deciding on an indoor greenhouse style. Do your best to come up with one that has the best of both worlds for your situation.
No, one size does not fit all, but you can get one that at least checks most of the boxes and then just has to be modified a bit to check the rest.
What Is The Importance Of Indoor Greenhouse Air Circulation?
In a word, everything. Think about it. If you were in a closed space and started breathing normally, how long would it be before you started to use up all the oxygen in that space? Well, that would be according to the size of the space.
Your plants are the same way, except they need carbon in the form of gasses.
Just the same way that you’d suffocate without oxygen, they will ‘suffocate’ without carbon bearing gasses.
You need proper air flow to keep down excess humidity and stop molds from taking over as well.
So, yes, air flow is a big deal in designing your indoor greenhouse.
Can I Have my Indoor Greenhouse in The Basement?
Sure, you can, if you’re willing to take care of a few of the minor issues that naturally go with it.
Here are the things you’ll need to consider.
1. What will be your light sources? If you’re in the basement where is your light coming from? Is it a day lit basement or are you going to have sunroofs or possibly parabolic reflectors?
Even if you do all of the above, you’re most likely going to need to subsidize some of the light.
It’s nearly certain that you’ll need a lighting system. So, will you be using solar panels to offset the energy usage and a battery system to store the power to use when needed.
Even if you have a pretty well-lit space, you’re going to need to extend the hours to keep the growing cycle going longer. You’ll have rainy overcast days that you’ll want to balance out and more.
2. You will definitely need to ensure that you have proper drainage otherwise you’ll have water pooling up in low areas.
Some basements may have the advantage of having a floor drain that can handle it. If that’s the case, do yourself a favor and clean it and test it before you build anything.
Otherwise, you could find yourself quit upset having to tear up your indoor greenhouse so that you can install a larger size drain that can handle the water flow.
P.S. When we say test it, we mean test it with 3 times the water flow that you’ll have coming out. Be sure it can handle it.
Also, be sure you have easy access to the drain to clean it. No sense in making it so that you have to move your growing operation just to clean a clogged drain.
You may even want to consider going ahead and tearing up as much as you need to now, and adding in a really good drain cleaning system so that you can circumvent any of the issues you could have in the future.
3. What are you going to do about air flow. Circulation is a really big deal in growing plants. Just ask anyone who has been doing it for a while.
Sure, if you just have a little tabletop greenhouse in the kitchen you don’t have to worry about it at all as you have plenty of ambient air that’s cycling through all the time.
But a basement can be a completely different animal.
Here you have to keep air moving to feed your plants the carbon gasses they need to perform photosynthesis. Plus, one of your biggest enemies can become mold over time.
Trust us, you don’t want to have to rip everything out because you have a mold issue. You won’t be a happy camper over that one.
So, look at how you’re going to deal with air flow before you begin, and you’ll avoid the challenges later.
We certainly hope that you enjoyed this article. We would like to think that, we had as much fun writing it as you did reading it.