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Project by Lumber2Sawdust posted 11-30-2010 05:01 AM 3520 views 3 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This isn’t completely a woodworking project, but I did get a lot of woodworking practice in the process. Our 2 car garage has enough space at the back for a pretty comfortable workshop. Just out the side door is this greenhouse. My wife is an avid gardener. Living in the foothills outside CO, there are lots of hungry critters wandering through (deer, elk, etc) and it gets COLD – 3 degrees as I write this!

I used a router more in building this greenhouse than I ever have before in my life. All of the glass for the front (first 2 photos) is reused from a commercial greenhouse that I got for almost nothing from CraigsList. In order to make them double pane, I routed a groove in the edge of some redwood, then built them into frames for each window using lap joints, and Titebond III.

Since this was entirely custom built and framed, I had to do a lot of “design” around the glass we had, and some carpentry and woodworking. The roof (third picture) is the glass from 22 patio doors. This was a very challenging project. Imagine a 200+ pound guy walking around on glass, 9 feet above the ground. That is what I had to do to attach the glass on the roof! That was exhausting.

There is still a lot to do, at the request of the user: electric, lighting, irrigation, etc. At least it is enclosed and ready for the winter. And we’ll have fresh tomatoes much earlier in the season! The fourth picture is sort of a bird’s eye view from nearby.

Now that the important stuff is done here, I can get back to my other projects. I finished the workbench (my first project posted here) and some gifts for christmas gifts.

thanks for looking.

11 comments so far

View stevecabinum's profile


23 posts in 4088 days

#1 posted 11-30-2010 05:12 AM

Nice work and clever bit of engineering with the windows! Can’t let the wife see this one or I’ll never get my “other” Honey-do list done!

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3665 posts in 5001 days

#2 posted 11-30-2010 05:24 AM

It looks like you’re in a beautiful country setting! We would love to have such a nice greenhouse so that we, too, could have a longer growing season.

The idea of being on a glass roof is pretty scary to us! Thanks for sharing.


-- Voltaire: “Those Who Can Make You Believe Absurdities, Can Make You Commit Atrocities” There are 112 genders (not including male and female)

View Alan's profile


443 posts in 4693 days

#3 posted 11-30-2010 05:43 AM

Looks great. You walked on the roof, yikes.

-- Alan, Prince George

View RonPeters's profile


713 posts in 4169 days

#4 posted 11-30-2010 06:23 AM

Sweet! I’m in COS and would love to live there…

-- “Once more unto the breach, dear friends...” Henry V - Act III, Scene I

View mmh's profile


3697 posts in 5011 days

#5 posted 11-30-2010 06:39 AM

Wow! That’s a nice greenhouse! I like the roominess you have to work. I have a homemade pvc arched frame that I need to replace soon with an aluminum frame. It held up through two 24” record snow storms last winter so I can’t complain. Do you ever use cold frames inside of the greenhouse? This would add another climate zone. Add a lightbulb and you may have a sauna with the extra heat!

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View NormG's profile


6574 posts in 4292 days

#6 posted 11-30-2010 07:16 AM

Great job on the recycle of this magnitude

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Bluepine38's profile


3393 posts in 4374 days

#7 posted 11-30-2010 04:19 PM

Wonderful job on the greenhouse and the recycling, I keep thinking about it, and after this years disaster
of a garden, late cold spring, I just may have to bite the bullet and make a least a small one. The other nice
thing about this is that it will help warm up one wall of your garage/shop. One gentleman got so much heat
from his attached greenhouse that he put a small fan hooked up to a thermostat in the upper corner and
helped heat his garage. Thank you for sharing.

-- As ever, Gus-the 82 yr young apprentice carpenter

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5449 days

#8 posted 11-30-2010 07:18 PM

this is WONDERFUL.
well worth all that effort, I’m sure.
And I love seeing how material is saved to be given a new life.

Now.. please let us know, over at GardenTenders, about the plants that grow inside.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4155 days

#9 posted 11-30-2010 07:26 PM

I love your greenhouse and you’ve done a wonderful job on it.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Lumber2Sawdust's profile


139 posts in 4154 days

#10 posted 12-01-2010 05:17 AM

For the folks thinking about a greenhouse, I would suggest talking to a window and door company. We got all of our patio doors for the roof for free from High Country Window and Door. When the replaced a patio door, they emailed us. They would leave the doors outside the building, rather than throwing them in the dumpster. They saved money, and we got free glass. Of course, while we were collecting enough glass to build the greenhouse, we had windows everywhere. It was starting to look like the set from Sanford & Son!

MMH: We haven’t thought about using a cold frame inside. My wife uses several of them outside. We have a little mushroom propane heater that we use on the really cold nights when there wasn’t any sun.

BluePine: I really want to use the greenhouse to heat the garage, but I’m concerned about moisture. It is very dry in CO, and the moisture from the greenhouse just condenses on everything in the garage (think steel tools :( ) I’ve already had some rust form on my table saw and band saw. Warm and rusty, or cold and dry? Tough decision.

MsDebbie: I’ll refer my wife to the GardenTenders site for details over there. I’m sure she could make some people jealous :) For the winter, it’s mostly greens like spinach, lettuce, and other tasty things.

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5449 days

#11 posted 12-01-2010 11:39 AM

oh we love being jealous—can’t wait to learn some tips and tricks from her

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

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