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Clearly Awesome; Recycled Window Greenhouse; Guest

15 June 2010

Okay, it's true, I have a special place in my heart for re-use projects and this in one of my favorite ideas that I have ever seen.  Check what Dori at Sparta Savings did with a whole bunch of old windows.

We had these studded wall panels given to us.  The guy who owned them was going to put them on a burn pile to get rid of them.  The wood was all brand new and had a brand new window in one of the panels.  Well, being the dumpster divers that we are, Mr. Right jumped at being the new happy owner!  Right away, he knew that he had a project for these.

These are the windows that I have been saving for a few years, because I wanted a greenhouse built in the backyard out of them.  All of these windows, I had picked up for free along the way.  It's been driving Mr. Right crazy, but I was determined to get my greenhouse.  Besides that, they have such great bones - don't you think?

To make the base, Mr. Right started with some 4x4 posts that are green treated, so the wood wouldn't rot away.  (The posts were also salvaged for free!).  He then leveled everything and started to put the wall sections up.

The size and shape was dictated by the premade panels.  He left the door out for a bit to try to figure out what would work, without too much work (if you know what I mean!).

Then he and my son started to screw the windows in place as close as possible.  Really no science or measuring here, just like making a puzzle, trying to fill as much as possible, without having to fill in with wood.

Mr. Right then made his own door out of a window and some left over plywood and hinges.  He even fashioned a handle by bending some old copper.  (He's such a MacGyver!)

For the roof, we have come to an impass.  To this point, this project has cost us nothing.  We had planned to use the corregated clear roofing for the top, but when we made a trip to Menard's (otherwise known as "man-heaven")  we found that the roof would cost us about $100 on sale to get from that material.  I've tried to convince Mr. Right that it would be great to use the extra windows on the roof with a bigger slope, so the water runs off (it's free), but he is afraid of hail or heavy snow on the roof. 

So until we come up with the money, or a different material, we put some clear plastic on the roof temperarily.  It works, but it's not wonderful.  Mr. Right went back and put scrap boards whereever there were gaps - mostly around the bottom and top.  Then he caulked any large holes - our first expense of this project!  My goal is to get this painted by the end of the summer in all white, but for now, we can't afford the expense of paint.  (I know it's cheap, but every penny is going towards vacation right now.  A girl's gotta have her priorities!) 

As to the plants, it is working wonderfully for growing huge tomatoes and so much more!  Big smoochers for Mr. Right and my dear son for sure!  Let me know what you think!

I love this idea! 
 I think you could really make an awesome space for year round(or almost year-round) gardening!  


deborah June 15, 2010 at 9:22 PM  

A fantastic greenhouse! and the perfect use for windows and lumber that might have ended up in a landfill somewhere. Hopefully you will find the right roof soon, or do you have any double glazed windows you could use? The glass greenhouses I used to work in had windows for the roof and you could open them with a lever. (The greenhouses were huge and ancient!)

Steph June 16, 2010 at 12:57 AM  

Love the greenhouse! It's always good to see someone think outside of the garbage can.

Ashley June 16, 2010 at 8:02 AM  

Now that is resourceful! And pretty funky too! My husband built a greenhouse too, but we used the heavy duty plastic and rounded piping. And put a sun shade over it in the summer. It is going on it's third year, so it's had a good life so far.

Anonymous,  June 16, 2010 at 8:15 AM  

This is SO cool!!! I'm totally bookmarking this for when we build our future home! Thanks for sharing.

Anne - Mommy Has to Work June 16, 2010 at 9:00 AM  

that is is cool!! I want one!

Thanks for following - now following back - sorry it took so


Life in Rehab June 16, 2010 at 10:42 AM  

THAT is just too cool! I wonder if Sam would leave me if I started stockpiling old windows...

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