Beginner Greenhouse 101: 6 Best Materials For Building Your First Greenhouse

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November 8th, 2022   |   Updated on November 11th, 2022

A greenhouse is an artificial garden for cultivating plants all year round – something that’d be difficult to achieve in a natural garden outdoors because of ever-changing conditions unfavorable for vegetation. You can make a greenhouse of any size as long as you have the space and can afford the cost.

Greenhouse Materials You Can Use

Various materials can be used to build a beginner greenhouse. But the durability of the materials may influence your choice. This post will highlight the materials used to build a greenhouse and the best options, especially for a beginner. Read on to learn.

Indicated below are some of the materials used to build a greenhouse:


Metals like aluminium are the most favorable material, especially for a beginner greenhouse, because it doesn’t rust. You can shape it however you like to make several structural components. It’s economical and long-lasting, and the maintenance cost is low compared to wood. For example:

Small Aluminium Greenhouse

Among the popular reasons for building a greenhouse is all-season gardening. For instance, you don’t have to wait for winter to plant vegetables.

Growing seeds can seem daunting to beginners, but they can be made a lot easier by choosing a small greenhouse to get started with. have a good range of small greenhouses and cold frames, giving you an easy space to start growing vegetables and plants at home, without taking up too much space in your garden or on the patio.

In fact, you can look up similar sites on the web for helpful resources.

Building Your First Greenhouse

Greenhouse from



Steel is another common material used in the construction of greenhouses, but for it to be durable and withstand raised moisture levels, it has to be galvanized. Steel is heavier than Aluminium; thus, it needs more support.


Wood is a good material for a small beginner greenhouse because it’s cheap and readily available. Plus, it doesn’t require any specialized tools to fix and is easy to work with.

Nonetheless, wood requires high maintenance, including applying appropriate paint to prevent rot, making the wood long-lasting. Take note while obtaining paint to apply to the wood; some paint, like creosote, releases fumes that may harm plants in the greenhouse.


This is a material used for covering the greenhouse and allows enough light. Unless the glass is two or three times strong, it may not be a good choice as one of the materials.

Glass is costly and easily breaks, so it has to be replaced within a short time compared to other materials. It raises the cost of structural components whose weight must be supported.

The glass option that can work best is ‘frosted’ for it allows better light distribution by dispersing rays. Greenhouses with glass material covering can be fitted with LED grow lighting to help cultivate and care for the plants.


This reinforced plastic rigid panel is affordable, readily available, and provides sound light transmission.

Sadly, ultraviolet radiation causes fibers to fray and swell, reducing light transmission with time. Some products can be applied to the fiberglass to prevent fraying. The products work best when used as soon as the fraying begins, extending their lifespan to over five years.

Being an inexpensive material, fiberglass is an excellent material for a beginner greenhouse.


This two-layered and air-inflated material is preferred for temporary greenhouses thus, can work well for beginners.

It’s less expensive, and to make it long-lasting, it’s advisable to coat them with ultraviolet stabilizers to reduce the cracking and yellowing effect. Applying anti-drip material helps minimize condensation that can be harmful to the plants in the greenhouse as well.


This material is strong and has a high light transmission and impact resistance. Acrylic material isn’t a standard option for many because it’s costly. It may be among the minor considerations for a beginner greenhouse.

Factors To Keep In Mind In Building Your First Greenhouse

For a beginner greenhouse, there are several factors to consider before making one, including, what you want to grow, the materials to use for the structure, cost, the site to build the greenhouse, and the structure’s purpose.

The style/type of greenhouse matters too. Lean-to-type greenhouse, for instance, is most favorable when you don’t have much space and would like to use the wall of your house.

On the other hand, an A-Framed greenhouse is preferred because of the significant amount of natural light it allows, and is highly recommended for a beginner greenhouse.

Similarly, a dome-shaped greenhouse also allows a lot of natural light, with a roof made of PVC pipes, a modern design.


Various materials are available for building greenhouses; it depends on what you think is affordable and convenient. Ensure proper know-how if you want to make the greenhouse yourself. The critical factor to consider is sturdiness which includes the ability to manage snow and hot sun, plus to withstand high winds and storms.