Introduction: Convert Porch Into Greehouse
Ok this is how i converted my porch into a green house.
The original porch was a pretty thick concert slab with a overhang of the roof and stud banisters and braces.
Then years ago they windowed it in but in a floor and some carpet.
It wasn't used for much then i started to grow plants there, You can see my Auto plant watering system, to see the before pictures.
This is most likely the cause of the mold and the floor rotting.
And this is where this instructable begins..........
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Step 1: What You Will Need
300 lbs of mortar
200 Sanded Grout
12 jugs of grout additive
Lots of Plants
Drill Mixing Rod
**lights (i plan on making my own LED lights in another instructable)
Step 2: Step One: Removing Floor
Ok so tearing out the old carpet was the easy part, the 1/2 plywood was not...
So i had no idea what or how this floor was attached i soon learned.
i grabbed my skill saw and just cut around the walls of the floor.
There was a baseboard heater i removed because of the cost of the thing, it will be replaced by one of those eden pure electric heaters.
I will install a outlet where the wire came out.
Ok Now get your pry bar pull up a chunk out of the floor, this should reveal the 2 x 4 holding up the floor.
TIME FOR THE SLEDGE HAMMER!
I tried pulling these up the boards were glued down and nailed into the concert slab. So a whack with the hammer broke the nails right off and the boards cam loose.
I couldn't get close so i use the saws all to get a little closer to the wall. So i left a inch or two around 3 of the 4 walls.
I saved the 2 x 4 and painted them to make a footer that covered up this gap perfectly.
Step 3: Step Two: Putting in New Floor
Ok first off ive never worked with any of these things before so here's what you should learn by my mistakes.
DON'T USE STONES YOU FIND IN YOUR BACK YARD!
this cost you so much more then tile and is sooo much harder to lay level and straight, there are plenty of natural stone tile use it.
BUY A MIXER FOR YOUR DRILL
There less then ten bucks and after hand mixing 100 pounds of mortar it 100 times faster and saves you A LOT of time.
BUY A COUPLE OF SPONGES
Sponges are so important in laying tile use it don't use a rag like i thought i could.
KEEP IT CLEAN
90% of this is keeping the stones clean its not easy when using natural rocks, but tile is alot easier to keep clean.
OK now what you will need
stone (use tile)
knee pads or something like it (serious its hard on you knees)
ii spend 3 weeks search the creek behind my house for large flat stones, perfectly flat natural stones are not easy to find, so compromises were made. stones started getting smaller. After hauling them a football field to the porch i would suggest not doing this.
Ok Now that you have your stones (tile) you lay them out so you know where to put them. This is like a big mosaic. (use tile)
Now you mix your mortar follow the instructions on the bag use your drill mixer. Grab your spade.
Now you lift some of your rocks and set them aside make you remember how they go back.
cover the empty space with mortar (make sure the surface is cleaned with a sponge. The amount you will use depends on the surface of the stone to level it with the other sized stones start with the thickest stones first. They will need the least amount of mortar.
Now take the bottom of the stone and lay our some mortar on it. Making the bottom of the rock level. Now lay your rock into place and continue on to the hundred others. Try not to leave more the a quarter inch around the rocks.
so i ended up getting mortar on EVERYTHING!!! all over the surface of the rocks that i though i cleaned well enough this looks terrible so MAKE SURE TO KEEP IT CLEAN.
GROUTING\ Grouting would be very easy if the floor is perfectly level the stones are all the same size and the spacing in between the tiles or stones is even.
NONE OF THIS HAPPENED
So i took me forever to grout around the stones. The basic way to do this is to mix up your grout.
( a women in the lowes said they used the grout additive for a similar project so i bought it)
And i just used my hands to slobber on some grout into the cracks. and work it into off the stones into the cracks with a wet sponge in circular motions. Then blot down the grout into the cracks.
MAKE SURE TO GET ALL THE GROUT OFF THE ROCKS.
OK after that ( took me a month) your floor is finished
Step 4: Step Three: Prep and Paint
Ok so the base board was removed the outlet was changed,
get outlet box and the little screw clamp thing that goes in it
QUICK INSTALL OF OUTLET
Take the box attache the wire securing nut thing in one of the punch out holes, run the wire through the box screw the thing down holding the wire into place, strip the wire down the middle the middle is the copper ground wire don't cut into the other wires.
Ok the wire stick out from the baseboard, has three wires in it
white black and copper
copper is ground
white is neutral
black is hot
when you look a outlet there are 5 screws on it, two on one side three on the other, the screws are brass or silver silver is WHITE Brass is BLACK. and the 5th screw is the ground. The two sets of screw on either side has a little brass bridge, dont snap this apart its for splitting the outlet into two and most of the time you dont need to do that.
you go your your white wire around the silver screw on one side and the black wire attached around the brass screw. and the ground brass wire around the freak screw. For safety wrap electrical tape around the sides .
Now push the thing back into the box screw it into place, patch the walls. (check out another instructable for this)
Now one of the walls on the porch was the original house exterior wall shag wood stained.
I didn't have any primer and all the paint im using was in the garage for years. So i use the dry wall patch stuff to smooth out the one wall. First i hit it with some sand paper then took the dry wall patch stuff i needed to fix the outlet hole.
i put a thin coat on the wall this smoothed it out, and dried white so the dark walnut stain the was on the wall would not bleed through.
So i had two colors of paint a dark brown a white, so i repainted the whole place in a German cottage esk look.
Step 5: Step Four: Shelfing / Planters
Ok most of the shelves i got a target i constructed them into a way that would go the length of the wall. Bought some hanging baskets and stand on sale for 3 bucks each ! (whoo seasonal clearance!) And spray painted a metal outdoor table to match the rest of the shelving and planters. Also got some tiny plants and some nice big plants .
Also a stand for my herb ball, (check out my other instructable herb ball)
And under the shelving i put some plastic trays to catch the water, form the irrigation system. These are from restaurants there used for holding dough.
Add a couch and a chair and you got a nice place to sit and enjoy your plants.
Step 6: Step Five Irrigation / Lights / Heat
The irrigation system
is basically the same form another instructable, only i bought small small sprayer tips that stick right into a hose. here and spray painted the plastic barrel hammered iron to match the rest of the stuff is a link to that.
is one of those eden pure heaters its electric and very efficient heats the space well and costs very little.
These are not yet finished i will have a whole other instructable abotu making your own LED grow lights.
There you go this is how i converted a porch into a green house. a nice place to sit, and i will dig up most of my vegetable plants and continue to grow them through winter. Then use this to sprout new veggies in the spring.