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About Polycarbonate Greenhouses

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Snap and Grow 8x12 GreenOn the market today, you will find a variety of materials used to construct greenhouse paneling, one of the most popular being polycarbonate. Ideal for hobby gardeners, polycarbonate greenhouse panels exhibit incredible strength, tolerance of a wide variety of temperatures, and superior ability to transmit light when compared to glass. As a type of thermoplastic polymer, polycarbonate is a very durable material with many functional qualities including resistance to heat and impact, and flame retardant properties. Because polycarbonate alone is not very scratch-tolerant, most polycarbonate greenhouse panels are coated with a scratch-resistant glaze. These specialized panels protect plants from UV rays up to 100% and are virtually indestructible.

Various manufacturers of polycarbonate greenhouse panels alter the high transparency of visible light by adding colorants to make the panels opaque or even dark, depending on the intended greenhouse type and weather conditions where it will be installed. Polycarbonate greenhouse panels also come in a variety of thicknesses, dual layers called “twin-wall”, and corrugated textures.

When determining the right type of polycarbonate greenhouse for your project, consider sun exposure and the extremes of your seasonal temperatures. For example, people living in areas with cooler winters could benefit from having a thicker -4 mil and up- translucent twin-wall polycarbonate greenhouse, affording them more cold protection and higher heat retention in winter, with maximal light transmission to grow year-round. For those in hot summer climates, an opaque, white or darker (smoke) color panels may be more appropriate for reducing heat and light transmission. Opaque greenhouse paneling is also ideal for crop privacy. The hobby gardener living in a climate with average seasons could benefit from a medium-thickness, clear polycarbonate greenhouse paneling, modifying with greenhouse shade cloth for summer heat as needed.

Living Outfitters carries some great polycarbonate greenhouses for home use from a variety of manufacturers. For a greenhouse environment of high heat retention and even, diffused light, see STC greenhouses and Poly-Tex greenhouses. Both create 4mm twin-wall translucent polycarbonate greenhouse kits, perfect for the hobby gardener. Each company offers easy assembly of their kits, with strong polycarbonate panels specially designed to snap right into place. Some STC polycarbonate greenhouses have darkened 4 mil twin-wall bronze roof panels, and clear 4 mil twin-wall on the sides. This type of dual-paneling allows for extra sun protection from above, while letting in more light from the sides to reach lower plant limbs. Sunshine Gardenhouse offers twin-wall polycarbonate greenhouses that are treated with special coatings, making them resistant to discoloration and condensation.