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Made In Britain Homegrown Company
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What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse?

What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse?

16 minute read

Greenhouse staging is essential if you want to make the best use of the protected growing environment of a greenhouse, so the question now is ‘What staging do you need for a greenhouse?’.

In this guide we aim to help you identify what type of staging you need based on the size of your greenhouse and what you intend to grow. We will also show you what staging is available to you to buy and the features to look out for to ensure that you get the best greenhouse staging for your needs.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Your Greenhouse Space  

    Greenhouses come in lots of different sizes, shapes and materials and what your greenhouse is like will definitely have an effect on what staging you will need for it.

    The most popular size of greenhouse in the UK is one which is 6ft x 8ft. This size will fit into most gardens and not only provides you with sufficient space to stand and work comfortably inside, it is also roomy enough that you can add staging or shelving around three sides of it if you need to. 

    6ft x 8ft Greenhouse6ft x 8ft Greenhouse6ft x 8ft Greenhouse

    A 6ft x 8ft greenhouse is also the perfect size for a new gardener getting their first full size greenhouse. So let’s take a look at what you should be considering before you decide which staging or shelving to purchase to furnish your greenhouse and create an efficient growing space. 

    "One reason nature is efficient is because there is no waste."

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Stand Inside Your Greenhouse

    We always recommend waiting until you have your greenhouse built in your garden before deciding which staging to choose. This is so that you can have the opportunity to stand within the greenhouse when it’s empty, tape measure in hand, and appreciate the space you and your plants will have before you start measuring.

    When you purchase your greenhouse you will have been given a ‘nominal’ size. When it arrives and it has been constructed you need to measure inside to find out the exact space you have available for staging or shelving. The measurements you need to take are:

    • From the side of the greenhouse to the door opening – ideally you wouldn’t want your staging to stick out into the door space, so this measurement should give you the maximum width for your greenhouse staging if it is to be placed at one side of the greenhouse.
    • From the front of the greenhouse to the back wall – this will show you the maximum length of staging you could fit down one side of your greenhouse.
    • The height from the floor to the eaves – this is usually the straight wall of the greenhouse before the sloping roof begins. This will indicate what height is available to accommodate staging or shelving.
    • The width across the back of the greenhouse – you might want to place greenhouse staging along this back wall and this will show you the total space available.

    That’s all the measuring done – you can now draw out a plan view of your greenhouse floor, indicating the door, and work out what you can fit in where.  

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? What Activities Will Be Taking Place    

    To decide on what staging you need for your greenhouse think about what you will be doing in the greenhouse – what activities you will be carrying out. For example:

    Will you be growing plants from seed?
    If yes, you are likely to need an area where you can fill seed trays with compost and sow seeds. If you intend to grow lots of plants this way you probably need a permanent area to carry this out – so a Potting Bench or Potting Station. If it’s something you will only be doing occasionally, then a Potting Tray which you can use on top of staging should be sufficient – moving the tray out of the way when it’s not needed.

    The Potting Tidy shown opposite is a perfect example of creating a temporary space for potting up.

    This sturdy tray has deep sides and back to keep compost neatly contained. It’s wide enough to be comfortable to work at when placed on your greenhouse staging.

    Made from durable plastic makes it easy to clean after use – so you can store it neatly away until it’s needed again.

    Potting Tidy Tray

    Will you be using a propagator?
    Using a propagator in your greenhouse will mean that you need electric in your greenhouse as well as a place for the propagator to stand. If you expect to only be using the propagator for a few months in the year, then as long as you have staging where it can sit safely and is at a height where it will be comfortable for you to tend your plants then that will be ideal. If you want a permanent area for propagation you might want to consider a hot bench – where the top surface of the bench can be heated, and you can place your seed trays on top. There is also a specially designed cover to make this into an even more efficient propagation area.

    vitopod propagator on greenhouse staging

    When using a propagator in your greenhouse – such as the Vitopod Propagator opposite – you need to make sure that your greenhouse staging is large enough to accommodate both the width and length of the propagator.

    You also need to check that you will have space above the propagator to lift off the lid to be able to reach your plants.

    Will you be buying plug plants?
    Plug plants are very popular with some gardeners and can be bought online or from garden centres. When they arrive, you will need somewhere in your greenhouse where you can pot them up and bring them on prior to planting out.

    By using a free-standing shelf unit – such as our Seed Tray Rack opposite – you will have loads of growing space to do just that.

    By using a free-standing shelf unit in your greenhouse you can use just a small footprint but double, triple or quadruple your growing space depending on how many levels the shelf unit has.

    Seed Tray Rack

    This makes these units ideal for smaller to medium sized greenhouses where space can be at a premium. They are also great for busy greenhouses as they enable you to generate lots more growing space.

    Will you be growing plants to go into your garden?
    If you are growing plants to go out into your garden – these could be annuals or perennials, they could be vegetables, herbs or fruits to go into your kitchen garden or to your allotment – then you will need space within your greenhouse where these plants can grow until they are large enough to plant out.

    It also means that there will be times in the year when your greenhouse will be packed to overflowing with plants, so you will need to make use of every space you have.

    Up Staging Extra Tier

    One of the ways which you can do this is to add extra levels to your staging – for example by making one of our Two Tier Up Stagings three levels high by adding an Extra Tier.

    Adding an extra tier to your staging in this way is not temporary – it is bolted into place, so is best kept in place all year round.

    The advantage with adding a third level in this way is that it doesn’t have to run the full length of the staging, so you could have some sections with a third level and some without.

    If you want to create some instant extra growing space in your greenhouse – especially for seed trays full of seedlings – then you could add some free standing Compact Staging onto your existing greenhouse staging.  

    We have designed this greenhouse staging so that it is wide enough to hold full sized seed trays but narrow enough that it won’t block too much light from the plants already on your staging.

    As this compact staging is free standing it can also be stood on the greenhouse floor to take tall plants – it’s ideal for over-wintering plants such as fuchsias which prefer to be off the ground.

    Compact Greenhouse Staging

    Will you be growing greenhouse crops?
    When you are planning to grow some greenhouse crops – such as tomatoes, cucumbers, aubergines etc. – you will need to plan this into your greenhouse layout when organising your staging due to the amount of space they will require. There are quite a few options available to you, including the following:

    You could leave one side of your greenhouse free of staging or shelving so that it is available to accommodate your tall cropping plants, however if you are going to have a very busy greenhouse in Spring, early Summer, then you might want to fit some temporary staging which can be removed when it’s not needed to free up the space.

    Temporary Greenhouse Staging

    The clever design of our Integral Staging and Shelving means that it can be securely attached to your greenhouse wall and is sturdy enough to hold trays and pots full of seedlings and plants.

    When it's not needed to be used, it takes just minutes to unhook it and let it fold flat to the greenhouse wall. With the surfaces being made from mesh this means that when it is flat against the wall it doesn’t obstruct too much light into the greenhouse.

    Another option if you do need working space early in the year in your greenhouse would be to use our Grow Bag Support.

    We designed this unit in 1994 and it has the unique feature of being used either side up!

    When you need an area to work it can be used as a useful greenhouse staging, with the work surface formed from the large plastic grow bag tray.

    When you need the space in your greenhouse for grow bag crops, simply turn the staging over and use the plastic tray to hold your growbag and the sturdy aluminium framework will support your plants.

    Growbag Support

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Using The Walls Of Your Greenhouse

    Greenhouse staging is vital when it comes to making the most of your greenhouse space, but if you want to maximise the surface space within your greenhouse you need to combine your free-standing greenhouse staging with greenhouse shelves.

    With most aluminium greenhouses you will find there are glazing bars which you can fit cropped bolts into, that then enables you to easily and securely attach things to the walls of your greenhouse – allowing you to make use of the space above your free-standing staging.

    wall mounted greenhouse shelving

    Our Wall Mounted Shelves are designed to be large enough to hold trays of seedlings, or small pots or gardening tools, yet narrow enough that they won’t block too much light from the plants on your staging below.

    Available either 6 inch / 15cm or 10 inch / 25cm wide, and in two lengths, you will be surprised at how much extra growing or storage space these shelves will provide.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Using The Roof Space In Your Greenhouse

    Another area which should not be forgotten when it comes to making the most of your greenhouse is the roof space – the area from the eaves to the ridge of your greenhouse.

    When thinking about this valuable space, remember hot air rises, so by fixing shelving in this warmer area your trays or pots of seedlings can gain the benefit of this warmer, protected growing space.

    We have created specially shaped brackets that can be attached to the glazing bars in the roof of your greenhouse.

    Onto these brackets you can fit our aluminium trays to create a sturdy area where you can place your plants.  

    Hanging Greenhouse Shelves

    Top Tip
    To make watering these higher shelves easier simply line the trays with capillary matting and fix a water reservoir to the end of the trays. Then you only need to top up the reservoir with water to keep your plants automatically watered.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Creating Specific Areas Within Your Greenhouse  
    To help you work efficiently within your greenhouse and to help your plants to flourish, even a small, busy greenhouse will benefit from having ‘zones’.

    These ‘zones’ can be specific area for specific activitieslike we have described earlier, by creating an area in your greenhouse for potting up. But ‘zones’ can also be used in relation to what you are growingfor example, if you are growing flowers group these all together and group any edible plants altogether. You can also create ‘zones’ within ‘zones’ – so all the flowers you are growing with the same watering requirements could be grouped together. You could create different ‘zones’ based on the size of your plants. Or ‘zones’ based on what your plants are growing ingrowbags, terracotta pots, seed trays etc. 

    Basically, by splitting your greenhouse into zones you will be able to work more efficiently – for example, you will be able to water plants with the same requirements in the same way and at the same time if they are all growing next to each other.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Watering Zones  

    Putting plants together with the same watering requirements on the same staging allows you to set up an automatic watering system. 

    capillary watering system

    In the photograph opposite you can see we have covered the surface of the greenhouse staging with capillary matting.

    To keep the matting topped up with water we have attached an automatic water reservoir at the end of the staging.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Growing Zones  

    In the image below one of our gardening customers has created an alpine bench by grouping together all of his alpine plants - which thrive in the same type of growing conditions - together.  

    He has chosen to use our strongest staging – our Commercial Benchingas it can support the weight of the plants, the gravel, the terracotta pots, the sand and any water – which combined will be very heavy.

    Our Commercial Benching is also available with a Plunge Surround this is what you are seeing in the photo opposite - which creates the depth needed for the terracotta pots to be surrounded by sand.

    Plunge Surround On Commercial Benching

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Keep Your Greenhouse Organised 

    “For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.” 

    Having an organised greenhouse space means that you shouldn’t waste precious time searching for things because you can't remember where you put them!

    Greenhouse staging will help you get organised from a plant point of view – grouping similar plants and similar activities together.

    It will also help you get organised in regard to space – the better laid out your greenhouse is with staging and shelving the more useable space you will have.

    But what you also need to consider is that you will need somewhere to store things which you use in the greenhouse – these could be empty pots, plant labels, dibbers, bags of compost etc. so let’s take a look at some of the staging or shelving options which have been designed to help you keep your greenhouse organised.

    Our Caddy Rack has been designed to be a multi-purpose rack – it can be used for storage or for growing.

    It features little bins which are easy to lift on and off a mounting rail which will fit most makes of aluminium greenhouse.

    These ‘bins’ could be used for storing small tools, plant ties, packets of seeds etc. Or make drainage holes in the base and you could use them as planters for herbs, strawberries, flowers etc.  

    Greenhouse Caddy Rack

    Do you have a ‘bits and bobs’ drawer in your kitchen? It seems most homeowners do! So, if you have a garden shed do you have a ‘bits and bob’s’ drawer there too?  

    Adjustable Storage Drawers

    This made us think that as a greenhouse gardener you might also want a drawer where you could store all those important little things which you can’t do without as you garden.

    Our Adjustable Storage Drawers provide you with that – plus more than one drawer so you can be more organised – and a top and bottom tray which you can use for storage too!

    With a small footprint yet holding up to nine drawers this unit really does maximise space which is really important in a busy greenhouse.

    What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? Keep It Tidy

    You’re likely to spend lots of time in your greenhouse working – sowing seeds, potting up, taking cuttings, watering etc and as you work you are likely to generate some rubbish. This could be dead plants, fallen leaves, spilt compost, emptied pots waiting to be washed and if you leave these things around your greenhouse, it will become untidy and leave places where pests may take up residence. So, plan to spend 5 or 10 minutes at the end of your time in the greenhouse cleaning and tidying up!

    Ideally make room for two bins – one to hold compostable materials and the other to hold things that will need throwing into your general waste bin.  

    storage seat

    In our greenhouse we use two storage seats as bins – so we’ve got somewhere to sit when we are potting up and at the same time somewhere to place our rubbish.

    They aren’t too big so are easy to move and empty when needed – carrying one to our compost bin and emptying in the compostable rubbish is a simple weekly task!

    Our blog post What Staging Do You Need For A Greenhouse? has been created from our personal knowledge, information gathered by speaking to other gardeners or manufacturers in the gardening industry, by reading gardening magazines and devouring information from books and the internet. We aim to be as accurate as we can, so if you find a mistake, please remember, we’re only human. if you have any queries you can contact us today!

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