DIY Greenhouse

Submitted by Ana White on Mon, 03/04/2019 - 16:31
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DIY Greenhouse plans - build your own DIY greenhouse, free step by step plans by


Building your own greenhouse is something you can tackle and save a ton.  We built this greenhouse about six years ago, and it still looks brand new and is as sturdy as ever.  We are happy to share our plans with you - see below.

Here's some photos of the build -

Near completion of the framing stage. We used 12' long pieces of corrugated metal roofing for the side walls.

We ran the corrugated roofing horizontal.  This was very easy to install and we have had zero issues with this design.

We also trimmed the corners out with metal flashing to make everything look nice and finished.

The greenhouse plastic wrapped right over the corrugated metal - like it was meant to be!

The only part that was slightly tricky was the ends - but really no big deal to add the greenhouse plastic panels.

Our DIY greenhouse turned out great and we are so excited to share the plans with you.

Please post a pic or share if you build!

Pin For Later! 

DIY Greenhouse

Greenhouse plans
Dimensions are shown above for the DIY Greenhouse. It's a good size for a standard family of 4 or 5


Shopping List
  • 3 - 2x4 @ 10 feet long - use on back wall
  • 5 - 2x4 @ 12 feet long - use on sides/ridgepole DO NOT CUT
  • 32 - 2x4 @ 8 feet long
  • 11 - 12 foot x 26" standard corrugated plastic greenhouse panels
  • 1 - 8 foot long x 26" wide standard corrugated plastic greenhouse panel (use on door side)
  • 3 - 12 foot long tin panels (use on sides and back)
  • 1 - 8 foot long tin panel (use on front)
  • Tin screws
  • 28 - 4' long ribbing strips
  • L flashing (optional for the corners)
  • You'll need either metal gussets for the trusses or to cut plywood ones from 1/2" plywood
Common Materials
3 inch screws
Cut List

Cut list is in plan at each step

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Circular Saw
Miter Saw
Drill Bit Set


Step 1

Back wall framing.  Cut 2x4s as listed below.  Screw together with 3" screws or nail together.

  • 2 – 2x4 @ 118 3/8”
  • 6 – 2X4 @ 32”


Step 2

Side Wall Framing - Build TWO

  • 4 – 2X4 @ 144”
  • 14 – 2X4 @ 32”


Step 3

Front Wall Framing

  • 4 – 2X4 @ 32”
  • 4 – 2X4 @ 42 ½”
  • 2 – 2X4 @ 81 ½”
  • 1 – 2X4 @ 33 3/8”

Build the front walls as shown.

Step 4

Attach the four walls together with 3" screws at corners.

Step 5

Step 6

  • 1 – 2X4 @ 117 7/8” (BOTH ENDS CUT AT 22 1/2" DEGREES, ENDS NOT PARALLEL)
  • 1 – 2X4 @ 55 3/8 (TOP CUT TO DOGEARED POINT, 22 ½ DEGREES)

The back truss is built same as front. See next step for close up of the center cuts

Step 7

This board was a little tricky to cut - practice first!

Step 8

1 – 2X4 @ 141”

NOTE: If you use gussets - we used 1/2" plywood - this will affect your ridgepole length. 

Step 9



  • 10 2X4 @ 47 1/4” (BOTH ENDS CUT AT 22 ½ DEGREES ENDS NOT PARALLEL) - shorter rafters go up to meet the ridgepole.  I marked all shorter rafters to avoid confusion.


For the common rafters of this barn style greenhouse, we ended up using plywood gussets to save money. After cutting quite a few, I figured out how to cut gussets the super quick and easy way - got gusset cutting down to less than a minute each.

We put gussets on both sides of each rafter joint with glue and screws. We made all of the small trusses first on the ground, then it was just a matter of stacking them on the ridgepole and attaching to the studs. We used 8 screws per gusset. Common rafters are installed flush to top of ridgepole and flush to outside of side walls. We had to "toenail" the screws in - meaning they are screwed in at an angle. We used glue and 3" screws from both sides.

Step 10

The plan will get you through the framing.

At this point, you could use plastic paper, lexan glass panels, you name it to seal the frame in.

We used the corrugated plastic panels detailed earlier for installation. IMPORTANT: If you do not use panels you will need some sort of lateral support to keep the greenhouse from swaying side to side. Try 12 foot long 2x4s. 

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.



Mon, 07/07/2014 - 13:40

I know it was talked about at the beginning of this post regarding converting the plans for a shed. I know you've been busy creating life by way of baby and television show. Just wondering if this was something that was still in the works. If not I will fly by the seat of my pants since I've had a few builds and feel like I could. Thank you in advance.


Sun, 09/21/2014 - 17:38

Absolutely LOVE the greenhouse, thanks for offering the plans! I've wanted one for a long time. Oh, the apron is adorable and looks great on you!

Scott Walker

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 11:24

I found your plans last summer and loved the design so I decided to build one for my wife for her birthday last August. I didn't get started until the weekend of her birthday in late August so there was little expectation to have it finished before winter. It is now 14 months later and I only have a few trim pieces left to install. We live in a harsh climate and I wanted to be able to use it through the winter so I made a few changes. I built a 2 x 12 base and insulated it with R40 and the bottom walls are 2 x 6 instead of 2 x 4 and are insulated with R20. I used twin wall polycarbonate instead of the corrugated lexan because of the superior R factor. The insulated walls are of course vapor barriered and I covered them with tongue & grove cedar. I also made raised benches out of cedar for growing potted plants on. The floor has ceramic tile on it and the exterior is colored metal. I also ran underground power to the building and installed a fluorescent grow light. Surprisingly a small 110 volt heater keeps the temperature above freezing even during our awesome -40 winter temperatures. If the daytime temperature is anywhere near or above freezing we have to keep the screen open in the door or it overheats inside. I have attached links to a few pictures of the almost finished product, ready for another winter full of flowers and veggies. You will notice that I initially used clear vapor barrier until the twin wall polycarbonate showed up. This worked rather well.


Fri, 10/24/2014 - 06:01

Great artical, and awesome greenhouse.  I want to build one in the spring!!

quick question......where did you buy the "ribbing strips" for the corregated clear panels.  I tried searching the internet, but can't find anything.





Wed, 10/29/2014 - 00:07

Thank you for the plans and inspiration to build this "slightly larger than originally intended" greenhouse.  While it's not yet 100% complete, I wanted to share this pic.  A friend in central Texas has wanted a greenhouse for quite some time, so I told her I would come out and build her one.  But only after reading your plans, as I have no carpentry experience at all

She's a slim 16ft wide x 40ft long x 11ft tall and will soon have a roof over her head. 

Fern McDawg

Sun, 02/22/2015 - 08:55

I hate to be the messenger here but it's time for a reality check. The design of this Ana-White greenhouse is flawed. First, the corrugated polycarbonate panels are attached horizontally, that's wrong. The panels should be attached vertically so the rain runs off and snow will eventually slide off when enough accumulates.
Proof I found this
Corrugated covered greenhouse kit photos on Pinterest

Second and even more critical, where are the roof vents or knee wall louvers? None. This little greenhouse will heat up like a solar oven. No ventilation = high humidity and heat = plant diseases, stunted growth, mould and mildew. Why corrugated metal, wood has a higher insulation value for colder nites.
A redesign is needed here Ana people are being misled.

Ana White

Sun, 02/22/2015 - 09:48

Hi Fern, thanks for reading and commenting.

We've been using and loving our greenhouse for a few years now, and it has worked perfectly for us, and we've had no maintenance issues or issues with rain. This design is actually inspired by a very popular greenhouse kit we have up here in Alaska, that works for many people. But we do live in a dry climate. We also did plan on adding venting on the opposite wall as the door, but haven't needed it yet.

Like all the plans available on this website for free, the plans can be modified to suit the users needs or climate. That is the greatest thing about building for yourself - you have the opportunity to customize your project to your needs.

Thanks for bringing up potential ways that this plan can be modified or improved.


Fern McDawg

Sun, 02/22/2015 - 10:51

Perhaps you should tell folks about the lack of ventilation and the need for roof vents. I don't see any modifications re: vents on any of the photos people have sent to you. It could only help folks if you tell them up front to align the sheets vertically and add vents. Even in Alaska you need to ventilate a greenhouse imagine how hot it would be in the lower 48.
It's not like you get only 50 hits a week, I imagine there are hundreds if not thousands of gardeners who have seen your plans and some probably spent $1000.00 or more just to build a greenhouse without ventilation and the corrugated panels attached incorrectly.



Mon, 05/04/2015 - 09:12

Hello, this is wonderful and I plan to build something similar, however I would suggest orienting the roof panels so the corrugation allows drainage. With the corrugation horizontal, water (snow/ice) will sit in the channel on the top which will block sunlight. Putting the channels at a vertical will allow it to slide off.

And if you wish to add a rain catch system, having the channels vertical will allow this. As is, the channels will only drain to the front or rear.

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