How to build a green house

The depth of green-houses should never be greater than their height in the clear; which, in small or middling houses may be sixteen or eighteen feet, but in large ones from twenty to twenty four feet; and the length of the windows should reach from about one foot and a half above the pavement, and within the same distance of the ceiling.

The floor of the greenhouse, which should be laid either with Bremen squares, Purbeck stone, or flat tiles, must be raised two feet above the surface of the adjoining ground, or, if the situation be damp, at least three feet; and if the whole is arched with low brick arches under the floor they will be of great service in preventing damp; and under the floor, about two feet from the front, it will be very advisable to make a flue of ten inches wide, and two feet deep, this should be carried the whole length of the house, and then returned back along the hinder part, and there be carried up into funnels adjoining to the tool-house, by which the smoke may be carried off. The fireplace may be contrived at one end of the house, and the door at which the fuel is put in, as also the ash-grate, may be contrived to open into the tool-house.

Whilst the front of the green-house is exactly south, one of the wings may be made to face the southeast, and the other the southwest. By this disposition the heat of the sun is reflected from one part of the building to the other all day, and the front of the main green-house is guarded from the cold winds. These two wings may be so contrived as to maintain plants of different degrees of hardiness, which may be easily effected by the situation and extent of the fireplace, and the manner of conducting the flues.

The sloping glasses of these houses should be made to slide and take off, so that they may be drawn down more or less in warm weather to admit air to the plants; and the upright glasses in the front may be so contrived as that every other may open as a door upon hinges, and the alternate glasses may be divided into two; the upper part of each should be so contrived as to be drawn down like a sash, so that either of them may be used to admit Air in a greater or less quantity, as there may be occasion. As to the management of plants in a green-house, open the mould about them from time to time, and sprinkle a little fresh mould in them, and a little warm dung on that; also water them when the leaves begin to wither and curl, and not oftener, which would make them fade and be sickly; and take off such leaves as wither and grow dry.

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