Green House Plastic
How to Choose the Right Green House Plastic
Choosing the right green house plastic can begin as a simple procedure, but once you are faced with the many choices and options available, your simple decision making process can become confusing. To help you simplify the process of deciding on a type of green house plastic, we’ve provided a simple guide to the most common types of plastics used today.
Single -Wall – $$
Twin-Wall – $$$ (generally needs to be shipped by truck – motor freight)
Polycarbonate plastic is a durable hard plastic. You can find polycarbonate in a thin single-wall (think of the plastic you hate cutting open when you buy a toy for your kids) double-walled plastic (two flat pieces of plastic separated by plastic flutes and air space) and even triple-walled varieties. The thicker the polycarbonate, the better the insulating quality. This type of plastic is a great choice for the greenhouse gardener looking for a greenhouse covering that’s resistant to tearing. It is more expensive than other varieties, but holds up against severe weather for longevity. Be aware with all plastic greenhouse covering that quality varies. Be sure to consider the warranty, the length of time the dealer and manufacturer have been in business, and steer clear of ‘Made in China’.
Film – $
Twin-Wall – $$
Polyethylene plastic is the most common plastic used for green houses. You see it often at nurseries. One huge advantage of polyethylene over other greenhouse coverings is the light diffusion properties. Polyethylene diffuses the light extremely well, which means your greenhouse will have a nice even light that reaches not only the top of the plant, but under the leaves as well. Polyethylene film comes in a variety of grades that will last anywhere from a year to several years before it starts breaking down from the sun. Make sure the film material is designed for outdoor use and has UV protection.
Twin-wall polyethylene like Solexx, offers even better light diffusion and the added benefit of insulation. The R insulation factor of 2.1R is one of the best insulation ratings for greenhouse plastic (meaning lower heating costs for you). It is extremely strong and durable in high winds, heavy snow, driving rain and hail. It is affordable to ship and purchase in small quantities. Solexx is easy to attach to a greenhouse without building a complicated frame. There are other materials on the market that look like Solexx but have no warranty, so be careful when shopping for twin-walled polyethylene or polyprolylene. Be sure to check the warranty period. Only Solexx is backed by an 8 year warranty.
Choosing between the types of green house plastic available is most dependant on your greenhouse gardening budget and the level of quality you are willing to settle for.
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