Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

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Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Sat May 01, 2010 3:07 pm

I thought it would be a good idea to let people know how my 'greenhouse' is bearing up. It is made out of 2 litre plastic bottles strung onto wire and had it's third birthday at Easter.
Despite gloomy predictions of clouding and disintegration, all bottles have stayed in good condition - though I've just had the awesome task of unstringing them and cleaning off the algae.

:wave: This post is really just an excuse to get back into the forums after a long break - but it's true about the greenhouse!
In case you're wondering - it's nowhere near as hot as a 'standard' greenhouse but temperatures are more stable. Probably best to think of it as a giant coldframe!
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Green Aura » Sat May 01, 2010 3:14 pm

Welcome back :wave:

Your greenhouse looks great - got any bigger pictures?

It's a bit scary though that it's lasting so well, don't you think? The millions of these things in landfill that don't have UV to help break them down. Maybe there are other things though that do the trick, eh (we really do need a fingers crossed smiley :lol: )?
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby southeast-isher » Sat May 01, 2010 9:45 pm

I love stuff like this! Great. I would like to see some bigger photos too :-)
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Sun May 02, 2010 12:11 pm

It's certainly a very visible lesson in how long our waste stays around.
I regularly have a mini audience of people stopping to comment on it (good job they can't see the chaos inside :icon_smile: ) which does make me feel a bit smug. However, there are around 650 bottles in the construction and it took me a whole 9 months to collect them - largely by using a long reachy thing (litter picker?) to get them out of plastic recycling bins!
My avatar photo (I now realise) is a 'work in progress' one and I see we can now upload photos to the site - so I'll see what I can do with a camera tomorrow.

I note you have a polytunnel, Maggie - do they extend the season by a lot?
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Green Aura » Sun May 02, 2010 12:18 pm

Up here by a load - we've managed to grow a few salad crops in it this winter - and the broad beans are 3x the size of the outdoor ones. We're still not fully utilising it but we're getting better :lol:
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Sun May 02, 2010 12:21 pm

How big is it - do you plant into the ground or into containers - did you construct it and how difficult was it?
so many questions... I just want to know all about it, really!
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Green Aura » Sun May 02, 2010 12:45 pm

It's small - in polytunnel terms 10'x15'. We built it from a kit from First Tunnels - got every upgrade possible (very windy site) and apart from a little patching it has lasted 2 years. We knew we wouldn't get the average life out of the plastic up here.

We grow in the ground, raised beds. We made a bit of a mistake with them - having seen odsox's pictures we would have been better with 3 narrow beds instead of 2 broad ones but that's what we've got!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/26726673@N04/4570912022/

Now your turn!
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Wed Jul 07, 2010 9:46 pm

OMG - 2 months since I meant to get some photos for you. ..
I've acquired a Flickr account and uploaded some photos. I use baths to grow it - the plants seem to like it, the slugs find it harder to clamber up and over the edge and they hold more compost (and need watering less often). However, I am always optimistic about how much I can fit into them and I may just have gone over the top this year with 12 tomatoes in one and around 8 plus lettuces in the other...http://www.flickr.com/photos/51735307@N02/
When I first built it, I was so enchanted by the jewels suspended in the bottles (the coloured rings on the bottle necks) that I took some photos of those - but they're on a different computer.
I'm hoping someone will tell me how to show the image in these posts, instead of the URL or a link - it worked when I uploaded a pic of garlic in a different thread...
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Green Aura » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:56 pm

Image

There you go Christine. If you click on your picture to open it then right click > view image info and copy address in grey box. I wasn't sure if yours would work as it looked like it was protected but it's OK - I chose medium 500 image, I think the others would be too big.
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Thu Jul 08, 2010 9:00 pm

Many thanks, Maggie - I'll go and have a try with those instructions (and come back to you if I get stuck!) :dontknow:
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby balfour2011 » Tue May 10, 2011 9:51 am

Well, lots of usage of plastic bottles actually...not only green house, even houses are made of plastic bottles that too with the usage of 8000 pet bottles...wow man :salute:
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Thomzo » Tue May 10, 2011 8:03 pm

Wow, those bottle houses are amazing. I love the effect of their bottoms sticking out and being made into patterns. Thanks, Balfour2011.

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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Thu May 12, 2011 10:04 am

Thank you for posting up that link about building with plastic bottles: my greenhouse is a real amateur effort compared with these amazing constructions. I do have a painful back from bending over the bath washing out bottles last week to get rid of the algae and renovate the greenhouse - and there are only a few hundred bottles, so the people who build with thousands have my respect!
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby slysimon » Fri May 20, 2011 6:56 am

Great greenhouse Christine. You really have me wanting a greenhouse along similar lines.
I'm just wondering if filling the bottles with water would help stabilise, or even out the temperatures, during the summer. But then, the whole thing might freeze up during the winter..... hmmmm....
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Re: Plastic Bottle Greenhouse

Postby Christine » Sun Sep 04, 2011 3:14 pm

Thinking about filling the bottles - the bottoms on these are cut off to run the wire through, so you'd need re-design to do that. I did try filling bottles to act as the bottom weight (piercing a hole in the lids to hold the wire) but the water soon went green and nasty.
Plastic bottles are quite capable of withstanding freezing, though (I freeze my favourite cocktail in one) so leaving some filled with water in a small glass-enclosed place - like a coldframe, perhaps - might help to even out the temperatures.
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