• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies living kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • raven ranson
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Julia Winter
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Burra Maluca
  • Devaka Cooray
garden masters:
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Shawn Klassen-Koop
gardeners:
  • Joseph Lofthouse
  • Bill Crim
  • Mike Jay

How to build a more efficient hoop house.  RSS feed

 
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: Denver, CO
44
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I built the classic Elliot Coleman hoop house; 20' rebar/ PVC rods buried in the ground, greenhouse plastic over that buried in the ground, total length of 12'. 2 Vents and a door in one end.

This shape is a cheap and efficient use of materials. My older greenhouse has survived the harsh UV, hail, high winds, heavy snows, and generally wild climate of Colorado for almost 3 years with no significant damage.

However, it is an INEFFICIENT use of space. The roof is too low, and the sides curve down in such a way that it is hard to utilize the space. Persistent weeds grow out along the buried edge, and due to the buried plastic and the curve, they are hard to dig out.

Also, alas, Colorado is not Maine. In mid-February, we generally get a spell of warm sunny days (65+ F), followed by cool nights. Then during March it can dip down to 10 F or so. On warm, sunny days, the temperature soars, even with the vents and door open. Cool season plants are stressed, bolting or freezing out. Warm weather things can't be planted in there till the end of May ( the greenhouse will freeze if it hits 28F outside.) In the fall, the house stays hot and keeps cool weather things from being established. Without any thermal mass, the temperature was going up to 120F by mid May, while night time temperatures still dipped below 40F. Even with added Thermal Mass, (120 gallons of water) the temperatures ranged from 50-105, still too much of a range. As I add more thermal mass, I loose more and more growing space. Due to the curve, large barrels have to be placed far forward, increasing space loss.

How can I retrofit this hoop house to make it more efficient, space wise and temperature wise?
 
Posts: 3366
Location: Kansas Zone 6a
36
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Go down.  Dig trench walkways and bury the mass.
 
pollinator
Posts: 1654
136
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What about swapping barrels for IBC totes. They hold about 300 gallons and have a flat top that can be used for potting, setting pots or starter trays. Or for a storage shelf
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1654
136
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Or add rebar "ceiling joists" to straighten the walls?
 
Shiny ad:
It's like binging on 7 seasons of your favorite netflix permaculture show
http://permaculture-design-course.com/
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!