March 20th was the official first day of spring in 2022. Is your greenhouse ready for a new growing season? If it isn’t, don’t worry. As warmer weather visits more and more of the USA, there’s no time like the present to start cleaning.
If you’re looking for a new greenhouse, visit Arcadia Glasshouse at Arcadiaglasshouse.com for information on their glass and polycarbonate greenhouses.
A thorough spring cleaning is important when maintaining an efficient and healthy greenhouse. Over the winter, especially in cold, northern climates, year-round, climate-controlled greenhouses offer a refuge for various types of pests. If these pests are not exterminated, a new batch of plants can easily be wiped out before they get the chance to mature.
You’ll want to start by scheduling time to clean on a warm day. While this has the added benefit of making the cleaning much more enjoyable — nobody likes to clean when temperatures are below freezing — the real reason that you want to clean on a warm day is so your plants can be safely stored outside. Moving your plants outside from an insulated greenhouse can cause shock to the plants if the temperature difference is too extreme. It’s important for plants to be kept away from the interior of a greenhouse while cleaning is occurring, as some of the cleaning and disinfecting agents that rid your greenhouse of pests, mildew, and fungal infections can be detrimental to plants. Physan 20 is a safe and effective option for cleaning the inside of your greenhouse (available at Orchidsupply.com).
Once all the plants have been moved outside of the greenhouse, detach any accessories that are easily moveable. Next, do a quick sweep of the floor. Don’t worry about a thorough cleaning at this point. Just get all the large items (dirt clumps, dead leaves, etc.) out of the greenhouse. Next, it’s time to clean the roof and exterior. The most cost-effective way to accomplish this is by using a long-handled sponge and a step ladder.
Glass greenhouses and polycarbonate greenhouses are cleaned differently. To begin cleaning a glass greenhouse, start by hosing it down with water. If you really want your glass greenhouse to shine, you can then scrub it with soapy water using the long-handled sponge. However, just spraying down the greenhouse is often enough. Finally, use glass cleaner to polish the glass. Vinegar can remove most water stains.
If you have a polycarbonate greenhouse, we recommend investing in a microfiber car wash mop. This will prevent the polycarbonate from being scratched during cleaning. Use dish soap (mixed with water) while cleaning. Once the greenhouse is clean, it can be rinsed off to remove soap bubbles. Do not use window cleaner chemicals on the polycarbonate, as it will degrade the UV protective coating.
While you have your appliances and growing accessories removed from the greenhouse, it’s a good idea to disinfect them. Hot water and soap can be used, but there are also several specialized disinfectants that are safe to use around plants (Physan 20). This is also a good time to check the soil quality of any plants that you’ve wintered. How are the nutrient levels? What’s the soil pH? Making sure that your wintered plants are healthy and on schedule can save you from a lot of unneeded stress when you’ve managing new seeds and cuttings.
Arcadia Glasshouse specializes in constructing glass and polycarbonate greenhouses that combine simple maintenance with superior quality. They can be found online at Arcadiaglasshouse.com, called at 440-357-0022, or emailed at email@example.com.