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If your are wondering how does a greenhouse work then the simple answer is that it takes in sunlight which heats up the internal environment.

This converts solar energy (sunlight) into thermal energy (heat). Greenhouses are designed to allow sunlight to filter through the walls and ceiling. The sunlight warms the trapped air inside, creating a more stable and temperate climate.

How Does A GreenHouse Work?

This helps the plants to grow and protects them from extremes just outside of its walls. Most people know that  plants grow better when they have a consistent temperate heat and a good water source. A greenhouse can provide all of that if the grower ensures that everything is maintained and the system is kept in proper balance.

The composition of a greenhouse is key.

  • Typically, greenhouses are made of plastic or glass.
  • The purpose is to trap as much light and heat as possible
  • The plants and soil inside absorb all the sunlight and then reflect it back out.
  •  As the solar energy is redirected, however, it is changed. Sunlight is composed of shortwave infrared radiation that is able to pass through the greenhouse’s exterior. These waves turn into longer-wave infrared radiation after absorption by the plants and they are no longer able to pass through the greenhouse’s exterior.
  •     With more sunlight coming in and more energy being trapped, everything inside the greenhouse heats up further.
  • Through convection,the plants, soil and circulating air grow warm and moist. which means that as the plants heat up, they release moisture.
  • This moisture produces humidity within the greenhouse. Humidity is water vapor, which is a greenhouse gas. (no, it is not destroying our atmosphere)

I live in a cold area of the country now, Colorado (I pronounce it Cold or Hotto)so now it is imperative to have a better understanding of how does a greenhouse work.  We lived in Washington state prior to moving here, and it did snow there, but the weather was a lot more predictable.  A longer growing season, as well as we have lived there and grown lots of produce in our area.

So to combat the loss of plants due to the extreme growing environment at 7,000 feet above sea level, plus the added extreme of being located on top of Monument Hill, we are re-learning the science and technology of a greenhouse environment.  The problems that it will help us with are these:

  • Extreme temperature swings
  • High winds that pop up unexpectedly
  • Extreme hail or rain showers
  • 80 degree temperatures one day, snow the next
  • Keeping the birds from swooping down and “testing” the flavor of the new plants

So how do you build a greenhouse?

When planning a greenhouse, pick a construction site where it will receive optimal sunlight throughout the year. Pay close attention to temperature fluctuations of the different seasons in your area so that you can  choose your plants accordingly.

The temperature inside the greenhouse will always be warmer than the air outside.
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  • In freezing climates, however, a secondary heat source will have to be provided to keep  the temperature stable and allow the plants to continue growing big and hearty.
  • On the other end of the scale, a greenhouse can become too hot and will need to be allowed to cool off some.  A good ventilation system is necessary, including a shade screen in some areas on the roof top.
    • This is to ensure that the hot air can be let out.  Similar to opening the windows or skylight in a home. If you do not have a roof vent, you may open the doors of the green house in install a fan.


Another  way I have seen is that the caretaker of the greenhouse will spray the floors with water.

So to recap, how does a greenhouse work

The short answer is by creating a positive environment for which a balance of heat, water and sunshine will promote optimum growth and health of the plants that you are growing.  They keep out extreme weather, and in our case the curious birds who want to taste test.   But just like any sustainable lifestyle, the greenhouse system must be maintained properly by the owner or caretaker.

Just like anything in our lives, we need to balance all things to create a positive environment to produce the fruit of our lives.  I take step everyday to keep myself motivated and positive.

Each day I need sun, healthy nutrients, but I believe most importantly gratitude to God for Creating not only me, but everything that surrounds me and my family.  Especially the challenges, for without challenges life would be a bit boring and there would be no personal growth.

L earn how to keep your life in balance.  Robert and Terri TallTree are Native American trainers that will share the knowledge passed down from generation to generation.
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The steps to balance may appear simple, but the knowledge will change your life and help you grow to find your purpose and passion that you were created for.  Go here now, to grow into the life you have dreamed of.
Turning your dreams into the Life Of Your Dreams

Chris Downs ———————-  The Caretaker