Greenhouse Growing – Tomatoes


Greenhouse growing tomatoes
Greenhouse Tomatoes

Greenhouse Growing Tomatoes:

Greenhouse growing can be intimidating. Considering all of the factors like light, heat, ventilation, controls, etc. and how to incorporate them perfectly together to create the optimum gardening environment may seem like a daunting task. But if you choose the right greenhouse brand and do a little research you’ll come to realize that it’s easier then it sounds. Here’s a history lesson of my gardening experience; I have been working for Sunglo for almost 3 years now and before I started working for this wonderful company I had very little growing experience and no greenhouse knowledge what so ever. I grew up working at my aunts nursery watering, and moving plants from greenhouse to greenhouse. I never grew any plants myself or even really thought about it. And I was never aware of  how complex the environment was. Like how the cactus greenhouse stayed a perfect 70+ degrees while the smaller cold crop greenhouse was always cooler. I never thought how the fans and shutters were timed to come on at different temperatures and times and what affect the big misting machine had in the tropical greenhouse. Now that I have gained some knowledge I realize there were a lot of components at work to create the atmospheres inside each one of those greenhouses.

Here is my experience with greenhouse growing – Tomatoes:

2015 is my second year growing greenhouse tomatoes from seed! Last year I did not do so well with only 2 plants surviving out of a packet of 70 seeds! My failure was due to a lack of air circulation, nutrients, water and general attention. Lesson learned! This year I have been watching my tomatoes like a hawk.

Here is a comparison of 2014 and 2015.

Greenhouse growing tomatoes
2014 Tomato
Greenhouse growing tomatoes
2014 Tomato

 My 2014 experience was probably common for a lot of beginner gardeners. And I knew it would be a trial and error sort of thing but I was pretty disappointed in these limp little plants. Another factor that inhibited me from successfully growing anything was my access to our outdoor greenhouse. These seeds were started in a indoor greenhouse and then when they were big enough moved outside.


Greenhouse growing tomatoes
2015 Tomato
Greenhouse growing tomatoes
2015 Tomato

This year I was able to start seeds in the indoor greenhouse and then put them directly in the outdoor greenhouse when they were big enough to be transplanted. I also was lucky enough to receive 4 packs of seeds from a dear customer of mine in Alaska. She sent me a variety of her own seeds to try growing. I also planted some organic seeds from an online store. And I was definitely surprised by the results! I’m still learning, so every year is a new adventure. This year I learned that I should give the seeds more space when planting because some of the roots were bound together and made it difficult to transplant. Now I know!

Below are pictures of the tomatoes growth. I have to say I am pretty proud :)

How has your gardening been going this year? Comment below.

Learn some new tomato tips from a Sunglo owner here.

Learn about heirloom tomatoes here.

Greenhouse growing tomatoes

Greenhouse growing tomatoesGreenhouse growing tomatoesAnything is possible in a Sunglo greenhouse. From tomatoes to dahlias with our high insulation value and thermostatically controlled ventilation and heating system you can control the environment to your exact needs. Give us a call if you want the freedom of growing in a Sunglo. 425-251-8005.

burlap greenhouse shades

DIY Greenhouse Shades

Pretty Burlap Greenhouse Shades

Post author: Heidi at


I still love the Sunglo greenhouse that my husband, Chris, assembled last fall.

Burlap greenhouse shades

Greenhouse in December, 2014, shortly after assembly of the exterior.

And, since I’m new to greenhouse gardening in general, I’m still learning new things about it.

Too Much of a Good Thing

Because of the excellent south-facing location we chose for the greenhouse and the early spring we’ve been having this year, the fan in the greenhouse has been working overtime.  The plants and seeds I started inside have been getting a little too much of some good things – namely heat and sun.

My darling greenhouse is just doing what it’s supposed to do, and it came with a shade cloth for the exterior that we realized we should install pronto for just these kinds of conditions.

A Lighter Shade of . . . Shade

Maybe I was just being naïve, but it seemed to me to be a little early in the year to install the shade cloth.  In the Pacific Northwest, the weather can turn on a dime, and we might still be faced with days of clouds, rain, and general gloominess.

So I started thinking about ways to get some light-duty shade.  Something I could install on the inside of the greenhouse that would allow filtered light and bring the temperature down just a few degrees.

At the fabric store, I ran across that good old standby, burlap.  And burlap is sometimes used in orchards and plantations to shade crops but still provide filtered light.  Perfect.

I chose this soft, pretty burlap.

burlap greenhouse shades

Shading on the Curve

So now we had a new challenge:  How to turn the burlap into shades that would curve with the wall of the greenhouse.

burlap greenhouse shades

Greenhouse before shades

I decided I would leave the ceiling of the greenhouse un-shaded since most of the sunlight comes in from the south-facing wall.  So I would shade the curved wall down to the upper shelf.  That way, plants that needed it could be placed on the lower shelf and still get direct sunlight.

But how to make a shade fit the curve.  At first I thought we (and by “we,” I mean Chris) could install an upper rod to suspend the shades, and then a second rod farther down on the curve.  The shades would then be tucked behind the second rod so they would follow the line of the curve.

But we both hated the thought of drilling a lot of big holes and….

To view this full post you can read it on Heidi’s blog here.


1700C – 8×10 Lean-To Greenhouse Review

Greenhouse Review – Redmond, WA.

1700 Lean-to greenhouse
1700C – 8×10 Lean-to Sunglo Greenhouse – Attached to customer’s house on deck foundation

Hi Sunglo,

greenhouse review
1700C Lean-to Sunglo greenhouse

Thank you for making such a great greenhouse.  We chose the 1700-C lean-to, and it turned out to be a perfect fit on our deck.

We installed it around a kitchen door and can walk straight into the greenhouse without going outside.

greenhouse view
1700C Lean-to Sunglo greenhouse

It’s tall enough for us to walk around comfortably (I’m 6’1”), and wide and deep enough for several large shelves of flowers and room to work.

We’ve even brought in a couple chairs and table so we can hang out with the bonsais and orchids.

greenhouse review
1700C Lean-to Sunglo greenhouse – Interior

It was pretty spectacular to sit out there in a thunder storm with heavy wind, rain and lightning.  The greenhouse was water-tight and didn’t budge.

Greenhouse review
110V power panel with heating/cooling thermostat and outlet

The heater, fan and automatic shutter are hooked up now, and as you described the greenhouse is like a living thing, heating and cooling when it chooses.

We had read in reviews that some greenhouse kits had issues with rattling and weak frames.  We chose Sunglo because we had read your greenhouses were much stronger and in a class by themselves.

greenhouse review
Sunglo greenhouses acrylic panels and aluminum framework

After watching our greenhouse come together, I now know why.  Those rivets and aluminum frame are clearly inspired by aircraft design, and the final result is as tight and solid as an air-frame.

There is no rattling, and nothing moves even when you push hard against the frame.

We are very happy with our greenhouse and would recommend it to anyone.

1700 Lean-to greenhouse
1700C Lean-to Sunglo greenhouse

Thanks so much for making it and for your help getting it up and running.


Ron & Bertie

Redmond, WA.

To view this complete project click here.

To learn more about Sunglo’s 1700 lean-to series click here.

Read another customer review here.

Questions? Call us @ 800-647-0606

Top 5 Easiest Indoor Plants

Easiest Indoor Plants – For Real!

Easiest Indoor plants

Don’t be frightened! If you have a brown thumb these are the plants even you can grow! And from personal experience you really can depend on these plants to thrive in your home. Whether you have never touched a plant in your life or just want some life in your.. well life.. these are the easiest and most low maintenance plants out there! As long as you have a window sill or area in your living room that gets some sun these are plants that will give you years of enjoyment. And take it from me because these are my plants – I’ve had them for years!

Succulents & Cacti

SucculentsSucculents: These beautiful wide ranging plants are very easy to care for and with a wide variety of colors and sizes you can find something to match your decor and state of mind! My little plant (left) has been sitting on my office desk for months now. It came already planted in the stylish round pot. I’ve Cactiwatered it once every week or so. It’s loving the warm indoor temp and sun it gets from my office window. Look for Aloe, Echeveria, and Rosularia for starters. If you need help identifying a succulent visit this site for aCacti Succulent Identifier. Cacti: I know Cacti is a broad term but most of them do very well indoors because they like the warmth and need very little water. I tend to go for the spiky, scary looking ones because they create contrast with the other leafy soft plants we have here in the Sunglo office. As you can see (left and right spiky plants) they are still in their original trays from the nursery but I will be planting them in a container with some succulents to give it more pop!


Easy indoor plants

Stalks of bamboo can be purchased at a wide range of stores. I have seen them in grocery stores in the garden section, little trinket stores at the mall or in the oriental mall we have down the street here in Kent, WA. The stalks come in sizes ranging from a few inches to taller than your tallest cousin. I opted for a medium size of just under 2′ and that’s not counting the foliage that grows out of the top. They can be placed in any kind of container just as long as you keep it 1/3 full of water. Rocks or gems in a clear vase or container give it that extra pizazz. My bamboo has been sitting in the same container for 2 years. I just check the water every month to make sure there is enough. You can find pre made bamboo containers at certain stores that include a tray and rocks and sometimes the bamboo is curled or shaped into a pretty design.

Areca Palm

Areca PalmThis little tropical plant makes a big statement. It can grow to about 7′ tall if you give it the room to. When I bought this little Areca palmguy he was about 2″ shorter and in a smaller pot. I upgraded to a larger pretty yellow pot and he has grown since. It grows individual stalks that long skinny leaves shoot out of. That’s where it gets the “palm” in its name. The individual stalks are unique and this plant makes a great statement when placed in the right spot. It definitely catches your eye. I will be re-potting him into a larger pot soon, I would love to have it grow to 7′ :)

Rubber Tree

Rubber treeThis plant can turn into a large tree over time. They have been known to grow to over 7′ tall and they really make a statement with their bright green foliage. I purchased two plants and re-potted them in larger pots immediately after I got them home. They are both due for an even larger pot now! They do well in a variety of climates but indoors 60-70 degrees is best. With little watering and nothing to prune or cut off the rubber tree makes for a great easy indoor plant!



PhilodendronThere are probably hundreds of varieties of Philodendron but most of them have one in thing in common.. they just keep growing! I think they resemble a large ivy. You can grow them so they hang down over doorways or loop around your ceiling for a rainforest affect. This plant (right) came from my boyfriend’s (hopefully fiance soon!) mother’s house. She has had her Philodendron for over 20 years! It wraps around their living room ceiling and hangs over their fire place. These plants need little watering and do enjoy filtered light just like the rest of our easy indoor plants!



With a little love – very little! – you can grow any of these plants! If you just remember every few weeks to check the soil for moisture and give them a few hours of light everyday/every other day they will grow and prosper and you will have a better quality of life! Everyone should have at least one plant in their home and office. Being close to nature calms us and brings us down to earth – and sometimes that’s just what we need!

Linking to: – Indoor plants that thrive

greenhouse ventilation

Greenhouse Ventilation

Greenhouse Ventilation 

Vents VS Exhaust/Shutter System

greenhouse ventilation

There are many factors to consider when greenhouse shopping; Insulation, glazing material, space, foundation, heat and of course greenhouse ventilation. And if you are planning on growing year round you want to make sure to choose the most energy efficient structure because heating in the cooler months can be expensive – This is where great insulation can reduce energy costs.

greenhouse ventilation
Example of roof vent
Greenhouse ventilation
Example of roll up sides

Manual or automatic roof vents have their advantages and disadvantages. If the greenhouse is designed very well then aerodynamics have been considered and the roof vents will be placed in the perfect position for wind to pull air out while still circulating air through the greenhouse. Placement of the greenhouse is also very important for wind to catch on the ridge of the greenhouse and create a vacuum type air movement. A large circulation fan or multiple fans will be required in the interior of the greenhouse and will aid in fresh air exchange. Some larger or commercial greenhouses offer a roll up design that allows for the sides of the greenhouse to be completely open to the outside. Now, if you are concerned about pests this might not be the best option for you because generally with open air vents many of them are needed and screening them can be difficult, if not impossible. Maintenance can give you trouble as well. If you do not have the time to go open the manual vents, do not have the ability to climb a ladder for high roof vents, or have limited budget for automatic vents then an alternative option should be considered. For a very small/beginner greenhouse or a small lean-to style with a low insulation value these type of vents are appropriate. The higher the insulation value of the greenhouse glazing material the stronger ventilation you will need.


greenhouse ventilation
220V power panel

Thermostatically controlled ventilation is very popular and with supplemental air circulation can be most efficient. Sunglo uses exhausts fans and motorized intake shutters controlled by a thermostat with the option to hook up to a heater as well; we call them power panels and include other electrical items too. So if you prefer your greenhouse to remain between 50° and 75° all you have to do is set the thermostats for the ventilation and heater to turn on and off automatically. The exhaust fan and shutter are synchronized to open at the same time. The motorized shutter opens to allow fresh cool air into the greenhouse while the exhaust fan starts to spin and expel the used hot air that has risen inside the greenhouse. Sunglo’s basic system is rated to exchange fresh air throughout the greenhouse once per minute; providing you with a system that cools rapidly. The basic system is included with every Sunglo greenhouse. The exhaust fan(s) are placed as high as possible on one end of the greenhouse and the

greenhouse ventilation
Schaefer exhaust fan and shutter
Greenhouse ventilation - Automatic opener
Automatic vent opener for Sunglo vent

shutter(s) are placed as low as possible on the opposite end. This allows for the best possible circulation throughout the entire greenhouse. There are many brands to choose from but either aluminum, steel, poly or fiberglass options are available each with different pros, cons, sizes and pricing. We include poly exhaust fans and shutters with our greenhouses but any type is available for upgrade. Automatic vent openers are available for the gable end manual vents on our greenhouses and will increase air circulation as well. They do not use any electricity. These automatic openers are controlled by a wax piston. By twisting the piston left or right sets the degree to which it opens. These automatic openers are specially important in areas where the climate stays consistently at or over 80 degrees. By setting up a circulation fan inside the greenhouse and setting the automatic openers to open before the ventilation system starts will save you electricity usage. Sunglo also offers a variety of atmospheric controls. If you would like to view some of the ventilation products Sunglo offers please visit the Schaefer website or give us a call with your inquiry.


greenhouse ventilation
Sunglo greenhouse – Front with intake shutter and back with exhaust fan

Learn more about summer climate control here.

If you are interested in adding ventilation to your greenhouse or would like to discuss options or have questions about anything please give us a call at 425-251-8005 or e-mail to

Starting begonias

Guest Article: Starting Begonias in a Greenhouse


 How to Start Tuberous Begonias in the Greenhouse

Tuberous begonias are one of my favorite summertime flowers. Striking in containers and hanging baskets, if treated right they give color all summer and into fall. These big beauties bloom in many colors and are not to be confused with the smaller wax begonias you will see later in the season sold in pony packs. The showy tuberous begonia makes a big impact.

Since tuberous begonias can be started indoors in early spring, I decided to give my begonias a jump start in my greenhouse – Starting begonias in a greenhouse.

  • Choosing Good Tubers

Right around now, begonia tubers are available at home and garden centers,usually in packages of three tubers that look like this.

Healthy tubers
Packages of begonia tubers

Starting out with healthy tubers is very important. While at the garden center, I try to examine the tubers in the package as best I can. I look past the wood chips to determine if the tubers are healthy. I look for plump, firm tubers. If a tuber feels mushy when squeezed, that means it’s starting to rot. I also look for any sign of emerging stems on the concave side of the tuber.

Starting begonias in a greenhouse
Healthy tubers

They usually appear at first as tiny red or pink bumps and then they start to bud out. So in this case, red or pink bumps are a good thing as this means the tuber is viable.



  •  Starting the Tubers in the Greenhouse

I planted the tubers in square 5-inch plastic pots that drain. I used a 50/50 blend of seedling starter mix and regular potting soil and moistened it slightly before filling the containers.

I filled each container with soil until it was about two to three inches short of the top and then placed the tuber in the middle with the root side down and the side with the emerging stems (pink bumps) up. I pushed the tuber down into the soil but didn’t completely submerge it.

Starting begonias in a greenhouse
Pink/red stems facing up
Starting begonias in a greenhouse

Then I covered the tubers with a dusting of soil. I watered around (but not on top of) the tuber to moisten the soil. During the tuber’s time in the greenhouse, it’s important to keep the soil moist but not soggy. And since tubers can rot fairly easily, it’s also important not to have standing water on top of the tuber. So in short, water around it, not on top of it. In addition to evenly moist soil, they need lots of bright light, so my grow light will also come in handy.
Once the stems sprout a bit, I will fill more soil in on top of the tuber so that the roots can better develop. Another option at this point is to replant the tuber deeper into the soil.


  • Going Outside

When the danger of frost has passed and evening temperatures stay above 50⁰F, I can replant the begonias into containers or hanging baskets and place them outside in partial shade. They should be kept evenly moist (but not soggy) throughout the summer and fertilized occasionally. I’m looking forward to the show.

Starting begonias in a greenhouse
About our guest writer:  Heidi lives in the Seattle area with her husband, Chris. In the fall of 2014, they became the proud owners of their own Sunglo greenhouse. Read about their experiences with their greenhouse and their other home and garden projects on Heidi’s blog, My Sweet Cottage.

If you have a Sunglo greenhouse and would like to share your experiences, submit an article to From greenhouse gardening to replacing a panel on your greenhouse etc. – 4 paragraph minimum. Please include pictures.

photo 12 (2)

Lean-to greenhouse review

Lean-To Greenhouse Review – Minnesota

A dear customer of ours in MN. sent us a wonderful story about his greenhouse experience. If you are interested in building a lean-to greenhouse this is a must read!

“The knee wall is 4X6 pressure treated lumber.  It is a higher level of treatment from a local high quality lumber yard, not your standard self service do it yourself store.
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review
1700D – 8×12.5 Lean-to greenhouse – Foundation completed
I started the foundation wall right after I placed the order with Sunglo and took my time getting a good base packed below the timbers.  I dug out the black dirt down 12 inches and put in 8 inches of gravel, packing it as I went and kept it level.  When I put the timbers on top of the gravel it took lots of adjusting to get it level and square.  I measured kitty corner both directions many times. Then let it sit a few days and did some more adjusting after it rained and settled the ground some more.  I used a 2 foot level first and after I thought I had it right I borrowed a transom to make sure, and it was nice and level.  If I had to do it over again, I would get a transom before I started.  It would have saved me some time.
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review
1700D – 8×12.5 Lean-to greenhouse – First steps in the assembly process
Mounting the vertices upright and ridge header on the steel pole building wall was a challenge.
I waited for the greenhouse to arrive to prep the building to make sure I cut the steel in the correct place.   I knew I had to cut the corrugated steel to mount the greenhouse to the building wood frame.
I used a hand held high speed grinder with a cutting disk to slot out the steel siding about 3 inches wide. I inverted J trim on each side of the uprights and under the ridge header to finish the look. I put flashing on the top side of the ridge header. I also installed additional 2X4 framing above and below the ridge header to reattach the steel siding on each side of the slot.
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review
1700D – 8×12.5 Lean-to greenhouse – Assembly process progressing
My largest mistake was to assume my building was plumb. It was only 6 years old and I was very pleased with the quality so I assumed it was plumb. I found out differently when I tried to install the first overhead truss.  It didn’t reach!  When I checked the building I found it was leaning away by 3/4 inch from the top to bottom of the greenhouse. This delayed me a day removing the vertices uprights and ridge header to shim it plumb and reinstalling things.
It took me awhile to assemble the greenhouse because I’m not good at puzzles, so I went slow. I had planned to do so up front.
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review
1700D – 8×12.5 Lean-to greenhouse – Assembly complete!
I only worked half days because it was August on the south side of a steel building and it was hot!  I made a few mistakes but it was easy to drill out the rivets and correct them.
I was mostly done after a week and I was able to do it all by myself, except for mounting the ridge header and the first gable end panel.  My wife held things in place until I secured it.
During the assembly process I appreciated Sunglo’s customer service in discussing and solving the challenges I encountered. I am now enjoying learning how to grow plants in a greenhouse. I have lettuce, spinach, radish, chives, tomatoes, onions and strawberries already growing.”
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review - Interior
Growing strawberries, flowers, tomatoes etc.
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review - Interior
Yellow buckets filled with water help heat the greenhouse
Sunglo 1700 Lean-to greenhouse review - Interior
With multiple layers of shelving and lots of hanging posts you can really use maximum space for growing








Lean-to greenhouses are wonderful for limited or confined space. Sunglo offers 2 sizes of lean-to style greenhouses. The 1700 series – 8ft width is shown above and we also carry a 1500 series – 5ft width for even smaller spaces. With lengths from 5′ to 100′ we can help you find the right size for your space. To read another lean-to greenhouse review – click here.

Sunglo Greenhouse Extension Kits

Greenhouse Extension Kits

“I wish I would have gone bigger”. That is what I hear from greenhouse owners all the time! It doesn’t matter what brand it is, it’s always the same regret. Most greenhouses aren’t designed for extension kits but Sunglo’s are! We offer length greenhouse extension kits, so in the future when you realize that regret you wont have to worry. We’ve got your back! Each Sunglo series length is extendable. Stocked in 2.5′ sections. You have the option to extend your Sunglo greenhouse as long as you like!


Greenhouse extension kits
EX: 2100 Series adding a 2.5′ extension




1000 Series: 2.5′ Extension – $475

1200 Series: 2.5′ Extension – $525

2100 Series: 2.5′ Extension – $650

1500 Series: 2.5′ Extension – $300

1700 Series: 2.5′ Extension – $450


If you are interested in extending your greenhouse give us a call for more information or to place an order! 425-251-8005. Join our newsletter to hear about new products like this FIRST! Click here to join.

Sunglo Greenhouse Sales and Promos


 Sunglo offers monthly promotions including free accessories, package discounts, free shipping, percentage discounts and more! If you are interested in a Sunglo and would like a free quote with our monthly discount give us a call at 425-251-8005 M-F 8-4 PST or e-mail us at with your request!

 Get the greenhouse of your dreams for a fraction of the cost!

See our models below and click on the “series links” for more information.

2100G greenhouse sale usa
2100 Series shown with double doors and concrete knee wall



1200G greenhouse sale USA
1200 Series shown with double doors and cedar benches
1000C greenhouse sale usa
1000 Series shown with a knee wall
1500B greenhouse sale USA
1500 Lean-to series















Visit Sunglo on Facebook to see customer projects, pictures, reviews and more!

1700D greenhouse sale usa
1700 Lean-to series shown with a knee wall


NWFGS 2015

2015 NWFGS – Come see us!

Sunglo Greenhouses will be attending the 2015 Northwest Flower & Garden Show! If you came to visit us last year you’re in for a pleasant surprise this year! We are re-designing our booth and bringing some hands on displays to really show how strong and wonderful our product is! Not only will you be able to touch and see a Sunglo assembled but we are offering some killer NWFGS promotions! The 1000C – 8×10 greenhouse will be displayed so you can actually see how the greenhouses are made and experience one first-hand!

Check out our NWFGS greenhouse special! Only for the month of February! Click here.

Here’s a look at our builders working hard on the 1000C demo model!


Watch our 2015 NWFGS adventure on our Facebook page.

Sunglo greenhouses booth #701 is located on the 4th floor of the Seattle Convention Center on the other side of the breathtaking display gardens. We are on the corner of an isle so you can’t miss us!

NWFGS 2015 floor plan1

NWFGS Location

Need directions? Click the map on the left for directions to the convention center from the light rail, on foot, shuttle, etc.!

To see the entire NWFGS floor plan click here. And also visit the NWFGS website for a list of all the attending exhibitors and speakers.

We hope to see you there!