The cultivation of plants in a greenhouse is one of the most fascinating branches of gardening and there can be few gardeners who have not. at some time or another, had the desire to grow plants under glass. In this new edition of my book, greatly enlarged and completely re-illustrated. I have endeavoured to show what greenhouse gardening can offer and the wide range of beautiful plants which can be grown.
To be successful, however, one must create conditions within the greenhouse which are as near the normal for any particular plant as possible, bearing in mind that even on the warmest day a plant growing out of doors has its roots in the cool earth, with moisture rising up round its leaves, stems and flowers, and the maximum amount of light available. We should aim to create a similar situation in the greenhouse by providing a moist atmosphere, moisture in the pots (according to the particular plant's needs) and the correct amount of light and fresh air.
This may sound a tall order, for if one grows a fairly wide range of plants they are bound to have differing needs. Obviously everything we do must, to some extent, be a compromise, but the point is that it works if one follows a reasonable code of practice, as generations of gardeners have found.
With modern aids, such as those described in this book, it is becoming easier all the time to provide the correct conditions. Nevertheless, gardening under glass requires more skill than growing plants in the open. One has to control the climate by means of the heating system, ventilation and damping down, and there is much to learn about potting and watering plants and pricking out seedlings. All this may seem a little frightening at first but with practice and good instruction it is surprising how soon one can master the art of greenhouse cultivation. That it is immensely satisfying and exciting goes without saying.
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