How We Built a Greenhouse for Under $200

Since we live in the North, we need a greenhouse to grow tomatoes, peppers and maybe some squash. Ours is not heated but we get great harvests every year.

Here's how we built our greenhouse for under $200.
We sited our greenhouse right on last years compost piles.  After getting the levels figured out, we built the outer frame.

A list of lumber material and sizes can be found here on our blog.
Checking for level, we added a wall of logs on the one side. Next up, the roof panels. These were made in two pieces, and you can see more about that on our website.
After the roof panels were in place, we stapled poly around the perimeter of the greenhouse. Lots of staples were used so the wind would not catch the plastic and rip it.

I did a little rockwork on the lower part of the front and added a rock flower bed around the one side.
Here's the result - we made a roll up door with weight at the bottom, so when the door is unrolled, it stays put. We have left the upper portions open so there is natural venting.

It was a two day project and ten years later, it is still standing.  Read more about how to do it here on the blog.

Scarlet Runner beans growing!

Suggested materials:

  • Wood  (Lumber store)
  • Poly (1 roll)  (Lumber store)
  • Nails and screws  (Lumber store)

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Jo Barnier
    Jo Barnier
    on Mar 27, 2017

    How many mils is the plastic to be lasting for years ??? Also, does the greenhouse have to be in full sun during the day ? I LOVE this idea !!

    • Annie
      on Mar 27, 2017

      We just used 6mm plastic (regular stuff one uses in building projects) because we had it here. Greenhouse plastic I think is 10mm. If you site the greenhouse in full sun, that is good. It could be in slightly filtered sunlight to work. But of course a greenhouse is used because it will be Hotter inside.

  • Heidi Geyer
    Heidi Geyer
    on May 18, 2017

    Wondering what zone your in and would it work in midwest minnesota? Do u use year round? And if so...any other heat source other then the sun?
  • Kar1877834
    on Aug 30, 2018

    How are you heating it in the winter?

Join the conversation

2 of 27 comments
  • Mir20953048
    on Jun 30, 2017

    I am concerned with the accumulation of snow in the winter. This would only last for one summer where I live. Laurentians in Quebec.

  • Annie
    on Jun 30, 2017

    we get a lot of snow here too

    but the peaked roof helps the snow slide off. We do have to keep a pathway clear around the base for the snow
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