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anchoring the greenhouse


I wanted to redo the ties that hold the cover to the frame; I’d not done them very tightly the first time – after the assembly of the frame, I was more concerned to get it done than to get it done better!

As I couldn’t use the supplied pegs through the eyelets in the bottom of the cover (not on a concrete base!) I cut lengths of string and tied the cover to the bottom frame.

Which meant that I had to work hunched down – I took the shelves out, but the shelf supports were still there, so I had to duck under them, work on knees and elbows (I had a foam pad kneeler, but didn’t think of making a second for an elbow pad!)

At first I tried a lark’s-head through the eyelet, then tie the ends to the frame, but with the cover “underlapping” the poles it didn’t work.

Eventually I just poked string through they eyelet, took it under the frame and just tied it. I had to lift the frame slightly each time to get the string under –the shelf support came in handy for that, I just had to arch my back a bit to lift the shelf support and so the entire frame. Pulled the tie as tightly as I could, to pull the cover as tight as possible. I should have used thinner string, it would have tied easier, but I thought that this wouldn’t cut into or put extra pressure on the eyelet.

I’d loosely tied the sewn-in ties when I’d first assembled the greenhouse, but I wanted to tighten them.

Some of the ties sewn into the cover were so placed that they could go under a shelf bracket, so holding the cover firmly in place. I did half a surgeon’s knot and a bow to hold it – knot-and-bow isn’t the most secure, but I didn’t want to make a knot that I wouldn’t be able to undo later – I might find a better way to tie them later. And some of the ties were a bit short and a bit thick, which didn’t help.

Others had to be pulled a bit to make them go under a bracket, which didn’t leave enough slack for the bow part of the knot.

Others again were so placed that they could only be tied around an upright, which only held the cover to the frame; it wouldn’t hold the cover down, as the ties could ride up the pole and not hold the cover tautly.

Decided to tie them round the upright, then tie the rest into a loop, put string through and tie that under the bottom frame – of course, it could still slide along, but one can’t have everything.

I tried to get the knots where they wouldn’t get in the way of the door zip, but there wasn’t exactly a lot of room for manœvre

Not elegant, but done as best I can, for now at least

I was going to use bricks to anchor the whole thing, tying them to the frame, but I found these concrete blocks – had to move the first from the other end of the garden in stages, bit at a time!

The second is two concrete slabs which were a tad easier to move.

You can see the shelf supports that made me do a Quasimodo all around the bottom of the frame! I found that I could get my long plastic troughs under the bottom shelf as well, so that’s handy.

When the door’s zipped closed, I put a couple of bricks on the bottom of the door, to stop that lifting in the wind and maybe putting strain on the top (bottom!) of the zips.

All done

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I have a smaller plastic greenhouse. Placed it next to
a concrete fence post, and tied it to that. The fence at
the back provides additional achorage, viz one kitchen
cup hook screwed into the wood. Tied the greenhouse tie at the back to the hook.
Placed all my heavy terra cotta and concrete pots into the
base. Keeps them tidy, and provides achorage.

9 Apr, 2014


I'm not sure that this is where it's going to live permanently, Diane, so I didn't want to make it immovable. There are tabs on the outside to attach guy ropes, which the supplied, but nowhere really convenient to attach the other end - the left-hand side could tie to the shed, there's a handy hook, but only one.

There is'nt a hook on the shed for the right-hand guy - I want to keep the space to the right accessible as that's where the "water butt dusthin" is - the cord would have to go across the space at throat-levl, handy garrotte.

I don't have any terracotta pots - other than some very small ones which are occupied on the 4-tier, propping up a plant trough tray edge-on, as a windbreak of sorts.

I've not got some plants in there, biggish ones, and they should help to hold it down - but even without them, I don't think this greenhouse is going anywhere - well, not in one piece!

9 Apr, 2014


Phew Fran! I've just got up ( reading this I think I need a lie down!
brilliant job my dear x

10 Apr, 2014


Really hard grovelly sort of effort....Phew again. I have just found a use this winter for my tatty little wood and plastic greenhouse to store 3 bags of seed compost for now. I just left everything under the canopy and the perlargoniums and Fuchsias bloomed all winter. So the greenhouse was empty apart from some saved trays for cuttings.

10 Apr, 2014


Thanks, Pam – lol I was glad of a sit-down and cuppa after that (not that I hadn’t taken short breaks during the work; my back was shouting too loudly to be ignored)

But at least I shouldn’t have to do it again – at least while it stays here; if I can work out a better location, then it’s undo-it-and-start-all-over-again.

I can’t get the lower shelf supports out to get at the bottom frame – well, it’d mean dismantling the frame, at least partially, then reassembling, which would probably be a lot more work.

I did think of anchoring the base with sacks of compost and bark chips, Dorjac, but they’d be a pain to get in (especially to stack the later ones!), and a pain to reach to use, and of course unless I never used the bottom sack, the frame would lose ballast.

I do need to find a home for them – at the moment they’re stacked inside the gate, a plastic sheet over them, held with bricks – that’s okay while the bags are sealed, but open ones will need to be better covered to prevent waterlogging.

I did think of using the 4-tier, one bag per shelf, I could open them and then have them on a level where I could just scoop out what I needed, but not sure if it’d take the weight – I’d only be able to use the bottom two shelves, can’t see me lifting 60 or 100 litres too high! And the shelf would need covering; as it’s wire mesh, it might tear the bag as I placed it.

Of course I’ve got two sheds, but one’s fairly full and the other needs organising: if I fill it with sacks to use I’ll have no room to use them! And I really don’t fancy moving 6 heavy sacks more than once – if I can move them at all!

10 Apr, 2014


I think you must have been a Girl Guide Fran with all those knots. It will be worth while tho' if everything stays in place.

10 Apr, 2014


I was a Brownie and a Guide, but spent far more time as a Cub and Scout Leader. ther are so many knot-tying websites, some animated, and a site on YouTueb, TIAT, that does videos of knots. but can't beat practice, which I'm lacking in - these are just knot and bow

10 Apr, 2014


I see you have your greenhouse tied down now, Fran! Hope it doesn't get blown away! At least it should be pretty secure now.

The strong winds we had here have broken several sheets of glass in our greenhouse on the allotment. Somehow they even managed to lift up the window in the roof & break it. I didn't see it for myself but Gerry told me about it. I did see the cracked glass & wondered how it got like that.

As there is nowhere that sells glass in this town I don't know where we are going to get some more glass from.

10 Apr, 2014


lol if the greenhouse does take off, it'll have to do so pin pieces now, I think! (Of course, if a tornado happens along I'll dash inside it and hope to be taken to Oz.)

ouch, Balcony! did the wind break the glass directly, by sheer force, or did it drop stuff on them which broke them?

Can you get plastic panes? they should screw in, and be more securely held - and even if they break, they'll break into easier pieces - I'm a bit wary of glass for that reason - at least, plastic breaks into non-dangerous shards.

Sure you could buy any size of plastic, any thickness, on the internet - I bought a large-ish sheet on eBay - rather than buy a too-small light-box for £££ (and they're always set at an angle that would do my bak in), I got a thick-ish sheet of transparent plastic; I clip the paper to it, put a desk light behind it, and hey presto, instant light-box. when I don't need it for that, it sits out of the way beside a shelf.

And plastic is lighter than glass, so it can be sent through the post. and it might be cheaper, too, than getting the proper glass panes, espeically as you say there's nowhere local

11 Apr, 2014


Thats a good tip - putting bags of compost in the base
over the winter - will write it on the calendar for next Nov.

13 Apr, 2014


Wow Fran, good job. Hopefully it will take one heck of a windy day to move the greenhouse now.

Hehe I can just imagine you hunched over, all Quasimodo like. Glad you didn't get stuck under the shelf lol.

13 Apr, 2014


Hope your back is OK now Fran. Always a problem for women without a person who can do the heavy lifting, as OH is unable to help me. I have to buy small bags of compost. There is often help at the GC end of the purchase but I use the footwell of the car for placing bags and lift out onto a nifty little trolley I bought from QD.

13 Apr, 2014


thanks Diane - the prob would be manoevring the bgas in, and out again - and making sure that they overlp the freme, or they're no use as anchors.

uncortuanly the doorway faces the most usual wind direction, Samjp; I've put a couple of bricks on the flap of the door, so it doesn't lift and let the wind in. (lol two more things for me to trip over!)

It didn't take long to recover, Dorjac - or get back to "normal", anyway! The prob with buying smaller packs is that one pays proportionally more for them - "one-person" size alsays costs more, weight for weight, than "family size". But mostly it's Hobson's choice.

Luckily the local Percy Thrower GC delivers, or I'd be have tobuy bulk online (and then build a wall with the sacks till I needed them!).

Having no tranport is another prob: I bought a 4-wheel trolley from Lidl with the idea of using it to get sacks from my (then)local hardware shop - smaller bags and dearer than Lidl, but cheaper when you added in the cab fare needed to get those home! I managed to get six sacks home the only time I tried it; that wasn't easy, having to bump the trolley up and down kerbs, and I only had one hand to pull it with, needing the stick in my other (why is pulling a trolley much better than pushing it? they never seem to steer stright when pushed).

I'm planning to look at mobility scooters, now the raods are qquieter, but I'd need a trailer, or at least a luggage rack on the back - that little basket on the front wouldn't be much good for getting sacks of compst home!

I'd not heard of QD, so am Googling it. A "showmarket"??

13 Apr, 2014


I looked it up to & it seems they are a store something like Argos or B&Q or the likes. The nearest is far too far away for me to get there. As I don't drive I have to use public transport & I don't think the bus drivers would be too happy for me to get on their bus with 60lt bags of manure or compost! Besides which they weigh too much for me to lug around these days - I'm not exactly a 30 year old any longer!

Besides which there are B&Q & Argos stores here that could deliver heavy items if I really wanted them. The difference in saving would not make it worth going "out of town" to save on delivery charges.

13 Apr, 2014


you and me both, Balcony! I could only find one in Ipswich, which is a tad far to get the hus.

There's a Lidl fairly locally, I just need to find it - and a "nini" B&Q need to found out how "mini" - the nearest main one is in the next town

At least Argos can be accessed oline, and most thjings can be delivered. I think that Homebase is allied to Argos, at least they seem to share the same website design! so though I do'nt know where my local is, I hope they'll delier too - they sell cut wood of various types, which would come in very handy if it could be got home

13 Apr, 2014


I think you can order online for home delivery from homebase, b&q and wickes. Not sure what the delivery charges are like though.

14 Apr, 2014


thanks, Sam. lol that's why, when I do buy, I buy a lot! usually sam del charge, no matter what.

lol again, never htought IU'd miss the old place! but there used to be a communal "recycle area" by the hins: people would leae stuff out that they didn't want, for others to take if they wanted. I built my worktable almost entirely out of free wood!

I did find a council recycle scheme, where old wood etc can be obtained: just got to find it again and check details

14 Apr, 2014


I suppose it is possible to miss, was it Newham Fran? Certain conveniences within easy reach help a lot and blow the surroundings. There are 2 recycling bins on the way to the short walk to the shops. One for paper another for glass, cans of all sorts, and polythene bottles. They really useful, as I can pop bits in as I walk by. It's the lifting at the home end of heavy sacks of stuff that could do me in Fran. Yesterday at Harlow GC they had small bags of gravel.....yippee. The old sink is now gravelled up and looking well smart!

14 Apr, 2014


Yeah Fran, moving house and getting used to a whole different scenario is a really big deal. It is exciting as well as taxing, physically and mentally for you. Gives you plenty to be going on with. Some of those inner London councils get more money for the poverty and diversity of their population perhaps. They can target services at something for nothing to help people. I found small bags of gravel at a GC yesterday. Normally can't lift em. Now my refurbished sink is all glammed up with gravel. One happy gardener.

14 Apr, 2014


It was Tower Hamlets, Dorjac, which is next door to Newham - (Tower Hamlets is as far west as you can go in London and still be in the East End) But wouldn't go back there again!! I suppose I can live without junk wood, or at least without it so close to hand.

I have 3 recycle boxes, glass, paper and - er ... I got in touch wiht the council cos the path slopes up to the pavement, and as I wasn't sure if I'd be able to lug them and the wheelie bins up - well, I would, but would need time to recover! they said if I got a letter from GP saying I was disabled they'd come down and take bin from beside house. Which they've done for the wheelie bin, I've not had occasion to use any of the boxes yet. If I do need to use them, I'll leave them beside bin and hope they take the hint!

I don't have that many glass jars, and the 2 free newspapers I get each week are handy for household - crumpled for window cleaning, putting on floors when they've been washed, "mud mat" at back door to stop dirt tracking all over the kithcen, tearing into strips to go in composter

And once I start papier-mche-ing, will come in very handy for that, too!

hope to see pics of your nrewly-gravelled sinks soon.

I've been mildly looking at gravel and stone chips (mildly - interested but don't think I'll need them for a while, even when I can find storage for hulk purcahse!). Still got a couple of small packs of fish-tank gravel, but that's small stuff, almost exactly the right size to get caught in the mesh of my old sieve!

14 Apr, 2014

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