THE TRUTH ABOUT... Putting up a shed

MANY people find assembling a flat-pack set of bookshelves a considerable trial and end up with something distinctly wonky at the end of some hours of concentrated labour. Others find Lego or Meccano is something at which their four-year-old can knock spots off them. These types should steer well clear of self-assembly sheds and greenhouses; if bookshelves and/or Lego give a person high blood pressure, an actual building will probably cause them to explode.

Essential shed features are as follows: (1) floor (bare earth is a no- no, so this means laying paving stones or concrete); (2) door (make sure this is wide enough for mower/wheelbarrow etc or prepare to feel very foolish and endure endless maddening repetitions of "Why don't you keep the mower/wheelbarrow etc in the shed, then?"); (3) windows (or you won't be able to see whilst pottering in the shed without a torch, which is silly. And if it is actually a potting shed, the plants won't grow unless it's light enough); (4) roof (tongue-and-groove boards are more weatherproof than plywood but leaks are likely at some point).

Even The Garden DIY Expert (Transworld pounds 5.99), normally sanguine about all kinds of scary tasks, baulks slightly at erecting one's own shed and recommends forking out to let the supplier do it for you. "Instructions can be a little puzzling and the men they send have done it before," it observes. "If you do it yourself then you will certainly need an able- bodied helper," it further adds, ominously. To able-bodied add even-tempered, steel-muscled and with GSOH, probably.

For greenhouses, take all the above and multiply. The nicest and most attractive greenhouses are in any case those that have been in situ for many years and have blended into the garden happily; these are likely to be made of brick and wood or cast iron rather than plastic and acrylic and are, says The Garden DIY Expert sternly, "Quite impractical these days," which is a shame.

And remember to check up about planning permission. Sometimes surprisingly minor buildings can require it. If putting up a shed or greenhouse (or indeed gazebo or playhouse or treehouse) is a touchy, tricky business, taking it down again, particularly involuntarily, is even worse.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Customer Services Assistant

    £12000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A leading online retailer in the Home Im...

    Recruitment Genius: Telesales Manager - OTE £50,000

    £16000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If so, this online retailer are...

    Recruitment Genius: Packaging Operatives

    £7 - £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen for two indivi...

    Ashdown Group: Trainee / Graduate Helpdesk Analyst

    £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...

    Day In a Page

    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

    Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

    As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
    The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

    The Interview movie review

    You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
    Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

    How podcasts became mainstream

    People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

    Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
    Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

    A memorable year for science – if not for mice

    The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
    Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

    Christmas cocktails to make you merry

    Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
    5 best activity trackers

    Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

    Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
    Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

    Paul Scholes column

    It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
    Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

    Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

    2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

    The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

    Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas