Growing Herbs in a Greenhouse during winter

Growing fresh herbs all through the winter is one of the easiest and most satisfying ways to use a greenhouse. Clumps of chives, mint and marjoram and parsley plants can be potted up and brought inside to continue growing.  Basil, which needs lots of heat and is very tender, will stay growing longer in a tunnel or glasshouse than outdoors before the cold kills it.  Although bushy herbs such as rosemary and thyme are hardy outdoors all winter, potted plants under protection will produce mild, fresh-tasting young shoots long after outdoor plants have stopped growing.

Pot up herb plants or clumps in good soil or compost or a mixture of the two, water them well and leave them out of direct sun to recover for a few days. Then place them in good light in cool, airy and well-ventilated conditions.  Basil is best sown in small to medium sized pots and kept warmer than the others.  Water them regularly and don’t let them sit in saucers of water or dry out completely. Use water warmed by keeping it in the greenhouse for a few days to avoid chilling the plants.  Feed them occasionally and remove any dead bits.  If flower buds appear, pinch them out to keep them growing fresh leaves.  Watch out for aphids and guard against slugs: both stay active in the warmth of greenhouses much later than outdoors.  Be ready to cover plants with fleece, bubble-wrap, cloches or other protection on frosty nights.

Mizuna (horticulturalist Peter Whyte gives some tips for Greenhouse users)

Mizuna is one of the oriental greens that Europeans should grow and eat more. It’s best grown rather than bought because it needs to be eaten right after harvesting for maximum flavour and nutrient value, though it will keep for a couple of days in the fridge. Like lettuce, you can sow seed little and often all year round in a glasshouse or polytunnel. September sowings will produce deeply cut leaves up to April or May: single leaves can be cut off after about three weeks and whole heads after six to eight weeks.
Mizuna likes moist rich soil, so dig in plenty of compost or other organic matter before sowing. Sow the seed about a centimetre (half an inch) deep in drills about 30cm (12 inches) apart. Protect the seedlings from slugs. Keep it well watered and ventilate on sunny days – it is prone to bolting in hot dry conditions. If it does bolt remove the flowering stems right away to keep it leafy and sow another batch to replace it. Don’t worry if it wilts after a frosty night: it is hardy and usually recovers. It is a member of the cabbage / brassica / crucifer family so don’t sow it in the same ground as any of its relatives for at least three years to prevent disease build-up
Mizuna has a milder flavour than either mibuna or rocket, and is good in mixed salads. Like spinach it can be steamed, boiled or stir-fried but it shrinks a lot, so harvest plenty. ‘Kyoto’
is a good variety to try.

Display Greenhouses in Birr

Our latest addition to our display area is the lovely Modern Greenhouse from Janssens which we had at Bloom.  This brings to 16 the number of Greenhouses in our show area.  They include Greenhouses from Janssens, Griffins and Elite Greenhouses, Dwarf Wall Models and Glass to Ground, Free standing, Lean-to and 3/4 Span, Greenhouses and Garden Pavillions, Orangery (T) models and rectangular, narrow panes and wide pane glass models….. a lot of variety to see.  More will be added over the coming year. So come and visit our display Greenhouse area, right in the ‘belly button’ of Ireland – Birr, County Offaly.


Greenhouses on display
Display Greenhouses at Greenhouse Ireland in Birr


Display Modern Greenhouse
The Modern Greenhouse

The new ‘Modern’ Greenhouse from Janssens

The new ‘Modern’ Greenhouse from Janssens

A brand new model for 2017, the Modern Greenhouse does exactly what it says on the tin, it is a contemporary style Greenhouse. Available in 2.36m and 3.1m width models, this Greenhouse will be an exciting focal point in your Garden, a room to chill out in or warm up depending on the weather and a space in which to enjoy the company of your plants or drink a glass of wine depending on your inclination.

Launch of the new Janssens Brochure

We are delighted with the new Janssens brochures which have just been made available. The main brochure which is some 64 pages long includes some of the photos of Greenhouses that we have built, it is a vertiable feast for the eyes, the problem will be deciding which Greenhouse as they are all lovely.


Janssens also have a small brochure that presents the range of special offer models – rather unusually named ‘Action Models’, these Greenhouses which have limited options and so benefit from efficiencies in production represent particularly good value for money.