Protect Your Seedlings With a Portable Mini-Greenhouse!

Posted by @Gymgirl on
This handy little garden tool is invaluable when it's time to protect your seedlings from the cold, wind, or sun or to harden them off for transplanting into the garden.


I made this portable mini-greenhouse quite by accident, combining designs for a mini-greenhouse by ldsprepper over on YouTube, and a pvc light stand by mhpgardener, also on YouTube!

It is super easy to make, and it stands only 18" tall. It is perfect for sitting on a tabletop, inside or out, and each mini-greenhouse is light enough to be carried by a 5-year-old!

The portable mini-greenhouse does a wonderful job of keeping moths (and some late season stinkbugs) from landing on seedlings you are starting early or hardening off. Just cover the greenhouse with tulle (bridal veil fabric) and  moths can not land on the leaves to lay eggs!

Additionally, you can cover the mini-greenhouse with perforated plastic sheeting to protect against wind damage, beating rain, and too much cold. A lightweight sheet thrown over the perforated plastic to provide additional protection. Remove the sheet, and the seedlings get light, rain, and aeration through the perforated plastic sheeting, which doesn't have to be put on and taken off.  Just "set it and forget it!"  If too much sun is the problem, a sheet of 70-90% shade cloth will protect your seedlings from burning. You can purchase the perforated plastic sheeting at Territorial Seed Company


The portable mini-greenhouse can also be easily relocated during the hardening off process.  I have a small table I can set the seedlings on in the shade, then move them closer and closer into the sun as the plants acclimate.

As an added bonus, if you don't glue your couplers together, the portable mini-greenhouse can be broken down for storage during your off-season, or reconfigured into the PVC light stand, making it very easy to store.

Making the portable mini-greenhouse is super simple. Just follow ldsprepper's YouTube video here for making the mini-greenhouse.

(If you want a wider portable mini-greenhouse, you will need to adjust the total length of the pvc pipe according to the instructions in ldsprepper's video above.)  Also, keep in mind that a portable mini-greenhouse made of Schedule 40 (thick-walled) PVC will be heavier than one made of Class 200 (thin-walled) PVC.

Next, make a square base (similar to mhpgardener's light stand), using four (4) 90° elbows for the corners, and use as many "T" couplers as you need to get the length of greenhouse you want.


You can purchase PVC and couplers at your local home improvement stores, repurpose some you already have, or find some on Freecycle or Craig's list.  Total for my 18"x48" frame is approximately $13.  Not bad for such a versatile garden tool!


Comments and discussion:
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Home-made, portable, PVC mini-greenhouse with PERFORATED plastic film by RickCorey Mar 29, 2016 12:07 PM 18
Thank You, Rick! by Gymgirl Mar 13, 2014 2:18 PM 1

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