For more than 5 years, Staff and students at Solihull College have been delighted with the versatility of their Keder Greenhouse and the extra working space it provides.
Solihull is a College of Further Education with more than 3,600 full time (FT) students. The Land based department has more than 450 FT students, studying up to level 5 qualifications, mainly in Animal Management. The Horticulture department teaches a range of courses, including horticultural apprentices at level 3. All groups make full use of the greenhouse to study throughout the year.
Prior to installing the Keder Greenhouse, the College had used a polytunnel to grow shrubs. However, they had suffered huge problems with condensation and reduced airflow. In contrast, the 6 x 16 metre Keder Greenhouse was introduced in February 2008. Its ventilated sides and vertical structure means that it is now used as a teaching and working space for up to 12 students at a time without getting too hot. The College added the option of a door at either end to improve airflow .
The Keder Greenhouse is used to grow herbaceous and bedding plants, hanging baskets and crops for the Animal Care course, which is run on the same campus. Thanks to the increased height of the working space, they even have 4 bamboo plants waiting to be planted!
The College has appreciated the easy maintenance of their greenhouse. The team are now considering adding water butts to collect rainwater from the gutters to help with irrigation.
Nigel Bishop, Horticultural Technician at the College, had seen a Keder Greenhouse at several shows and was impressed by the service received: “We had fantastic service from Keder! They did an on-site survey and it only took 3-4 days to install the greenhouse. The tables we now have in there are used as potting benches and having the Keder greenhouse has increased the amount we can grow tremendously.”