The Evergreen Workshop Builders and Restorers of Timber Garden Buildings Specialists in Greenhouse Repair and restoration.
The Evergreen Workshop    Builders and Restorers of Timber Garden Buildings Specialists in Greenhouse Repair and restoration.

Greenhouse repair and restoration..

wooden greenhouse repair and restoration for all types and styles

 

There are essentially two distinct groups of timber greenhouses that we come across. 

 

  • Custom built greenhouses designed specifically for a client. They can be all sorts of shapes and sizes or built for a very specic purpose such as a 'Vinery' or 'Orangery'.

 

  • Timber greenhouses produced commercially in standard designs, purchased from a manufacturer either direct or perhaps via a retailer such as a garden centre. Makes such as Alton Greenhouses, C H Whitehouse and F Pratten and Co. are most common but we can repair or restore many types. For More information click here for the 'Cedar Greenhouse Repair' page.

    timber greenhouse repair is inevtable they need to be maintained or for older building, they may need to be restored. In both cases The Evergreen Workshop has a lot of experience of bringing both types of buildings back to full working order. One of the benefits of timber buildings is that they are infinately repairable and we have worked on some buildings that are almost 100 years old and still working hard.

 

Some timber greenhouse have metal components and aluminum, iron or steel components incorporated into their design. We have worked with these structures as well and can repair and restore most of these items however we do not work on purely aluminium framed greenhouses

 

Although the principals are the same for clarity we have seperated off the two groups and this page is dedicated to the: 

 

   Bespoke or vintage greenhouse restoration work.

 

This category refers to buildings custom made for a property owner. It ofte includes dwarf all greenhouses where a structure has been individually made to suit a particular application,

 

As all greenhouse owner know there are maintenance issues that need to be addressed. Also new owners who have 'inherited' older buildings may find them is less than perfect condition,either needing repair or perhaps a full restoration.

The Evergreen Workshop can repair and restore most of these greenhouses and has many years experience in working with what can be quite fragile and often unique historic examples of the garden building craft. Based in Hampshire we cover the area around Hampshire normally within 50-60 miles as most of the work needs to be on site and travelling distance and time is therefore an important factor. 

 

We always look to produce an accurate report and proposal for work that we feel should be undertaken and we provide a quotation after discussion, based on what you the client and we feel is the best solution. We are a workshop based company and look to take down and restore the frames of the structure inhouse before reinstallation.

Bsaic types of timber greenhouse structure.

A full length greenhouse is one in that the glazed wall frames go to ground level (often on a concrete base) 

 

There are however greenhouse built on a low single skin brick wall called 'Dwarf wall greenhouses'  Often built a top of  walls to custom measurements and designs, dwarf wall greenhouses cannot easily be dismantled and almost always require specialist  repair on site unless it is being replaced as examples below. Regarding restoration as this service is labour intensive and almost always 'on site' we have to limit the travelling range to which we can work


A third variant is the part timbered greenhouse, Still a full length frame but the lower section which would normally be normally is isntead clad in timber boards for winter insulation. We do restore these greenhouses. and there are many examples shown  Common makes are Whitehouse, Halls and Alton.  The lower section is clad up to normally 600mm or so to provide a warm zone ideal for over wintering plants. 

 

 

We specialise in restoring full length  timber greenhouses and have a wealth of experience with this sort of building. Most of the work involves repairing rotted frames which often need completely dismantling. Please note we are not a glazing company, we are essentially a joinery workshop and although as part fo our work we replace glass we do not undertake purely glazing work on any buildings. We also are workshop based company we do not undertake repairs on site. Many Dwarf wall greenhouses cannot be taken down and so unforunately we cannot help with their restoration.

Below are a couple of examples of some that we have undertaken.

 A rare and unique 1920s 'Vinery' in London that needed to be saved

 

 

This unique building was located in the front courtyard of an old stage house that previously was part of a large estate. Built when the stage house was sold off and converted to a residential property it dated to the 1920s and still had its original grape vine growing within. However the rot was so extensive it was on the verge of collapse. Restoration wasn't really an option but we could faithfully reproduce it.

There was extensive damage from rot in the frame and insect damage. The glass which included inserts of coloured glass was heavily stained due to poluution. So much so that it had etched into the glass and could not be cleaned off.

Bodged repairs over the years mean't that rotted timber had been filled with concrete or cut out and never replaced. Many windows had been nailed shut and pieces of plastic stuck over broken glass.

There was a decided lean to the building as the right hand side started to fall in on itself. This mean't the door couldn't be opened properly and so the building and the grape vine had been left to its own devices. The rot was so severe it wasn't a difficult decision to completely replace so perhaps it shouldn't clasify as a restoration. However the original design and features were faithfully followed to reproduce the original greenhouse.

 

The client was keen to see it's 'spirit saved and restored.'

 

The building was carefully taken down so that the details could be replicated. As with all old dwarf brick wall strucures this was not easy as the fixings were corroded and the timber in contact with the brickwork crumbled when touched.

 

Parts were then transported back to the workshop and the restoration undertaken.

 

At this time a few changes such as the large single door to a set of double doors were incorporated

The restored/remade buiding is returned....

Once again the 'Vinery' nurtures its grapevine.

The client was away at time of install on a business trip. Her first sight of the greenhouse on her return saw her emailing us late at night with a simple message 'WOW'.......

An alternative Project : Greenhouse rebuild.

When creating this website we tried to show the full scope of the work we undertake. 

     In this case we didn take on a 100% replacement but we were commissioned to deal with some very specifc problems with an existing greenhouse primarily the roof structure sperating from the supporting wall.

The client in this case had inherited with the purchase of their new home a very old greenhouse.

The original rea supporting wall date back to the early 1900s but the timber framework was a later addition perhaps late 1970s, replacing an older frame that had probably rotted away.

The crux of the issue was that the newer timber work roof rafters was seperating from the wall and the glass on the roof was sliding off especially after a storm or high winds.

The client had tried several times to deal with the problem and had also engaged numerous trades people to stop the issue. 

 

When we arrived we found the glass had layers of mastic bonded on to them, Nails everywhere and new capping strips all of which had failed.

 

The front wall section was by now also leaning forward at an alarming angle as the roof pulled away from the wall and pushed it forward but wassrill 'sound'.

Unlike the previous work little photagraphy was undertaken as a record of work progress, simply because the client was on site everyday to witness the work.

 

However we sripped the whole buildings roof off. and cleaned back all the glass.

The leaky roof had caused the rafters to rot and so new rafters and a completely new wall plate was installed throughout.

 

The wall plate is the link between the roof rafters and the brick wall.

 

All the timber was pressure teated and painted to match the exterior.

Before replacing the glass the remaining nterior including the walls were repainted and repaired. to complete a full refurbishment.

 

The front frame which was still 'sound' was pulled back upright and secured in place.

Doors and windows now opened again, new shingle was laid in the pathway and the terracotta tiles in the lower room were set back in place.

 

The brickwork was repaired and the glazing reinstalled using custom made secretly fixed stainless steel straps that attach the glass panes to the rafters. 

 

The intersection with the wall included new lead flashing and the rafter caps were cleaned and reused.

We also built a new potting bench which enclosed an animal water trough converted to store water (fed from the guttering) 

 

the bench was made from the old benches and timber salavged from the greenhouse and painted to match.

There has been a greenhouse in this position for well over one hundred years and today it is back working as intended and appreciated by the client.

It is worth noting that the client was avery keen amateur gardener and a lot of the produce she grew she sells for charitable purposes. The greenhouse plays a key part in this.

The clients reaction, well just days after we finished we had a violent overnight storm with 70mph winds and she said that for the first time in 10 years she looked out from the windows of the house and NOTHING had moved..As she put it, it is like having a brand new building.

 

 

We rarely work on dwarf wall greenhouses. Their removal is almost impossible without creating extensive damage to wall or frame. They require a carpenter / joiner on site painstakingly to work though cutting out damaged and rotted sections which often is simply not cost effective when viewwd against a replacement structure.  We therefore do not offer this onsite repair service.

 

When an old dwarf wall greenhouse is in need of replacing.

This old greenhouse had sat for years at the bottom of a vegetable garden. It had seen numerous repairs, bodged glazing attempts and had started to become unstable. Dwarf wall greenhouses are difficult to rstore as the connections to the wall have often corroded and the sills are rotted and cannot be replaced. As such we do not offer a restoration service for these but we can replace them with a new structure. There are comercial companies however that will build new dwarf wall greenhouses to fit existing walls based on supplied dimensions but this is not a service we offer.

 

We were comisiioned to build a new replacement greenhouse that incorporated a higher ridge height, guttering and water collection as well as incorporating fold down staging to allow for larger plants to develop.

 

 

The completed greenhouse stood 1.9M tall at the eaves and included 4 side vents and 4 roof vents with automatic openers. The benches were set two on each side and can be folded down independently of each other. 

Guttering either side was directed either two waterbutts tha were supplied or onto raised beds as the client instructed.

 

 

We even dug out an old galvanised water tank and converted it into a potting bench.

The client was delighted with the new greenhouse and invited nieghbours round to celebrate it's incorporation into the garden. Planting plans abound as ideas to utilise the space develop.

 

 

These are just a couple of examples of the work we have undertaken, we hope to show that what we do is sympathetic to the original structure but is also based on best practise and quality material and common sense where costing is concerned. 

There are many companies that specialise in onsite restoration  and glass replacement or very large structure including commercial greenhouses but this is not an area we cover. 

These buildings deserve better than the bodged attention of a local handyman and when dealt with properly can give decades more service and add value to a property.

Address

The Evergreen Workshop

 
Liphook


 

We often work out on site during the day and cannot always get to the phone, Equally when in the workshop we cannot often hear the phone For best results you should  always  contact us by email or use the contact form.

Email: evergreenworkshop@yahoo.com

 

Or use our contact form.

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