Posts Tagged ‘greenhouse’

This is a continuation from here.

1st thing I did order the plastic as I mentioned yesterday.

2nd thing is I built and installed the arches! Here is what I did, and how it looks. Feel free to critique it.

The first picture shows the pvc and how I connected the two 10′ sections. I felt that using a regular 1″ coupler was not going to be strong enough. So, I cut a 12″ piece of 1 1/4 pvc to made a new coupler. The 1 1/4 slides over the 1″ perfectly. The top two pieces will slide together and form a single 20′ arch. You can see that I already drilled and put in a bolt. Next the piece under it will be slid in and then drilled for another nut and bolt. The bottom piece is complete. I used 1/4″ x 2 1/2″ bolts. I could have used a 2″ bolt instead. I also put washers on each end. When they get installed I have to make sure that the exposed end of the bolt is facing down so it doesn’t contact the plastic.

I made up 9 of these arches. With a span of 3′ that gives me a total length of 24′.

These arches slide over the 1/2″ conduit that is already pounded in the ground.

I am facing to the east as I took this picture. My regular garden is directly south , or on the right side of the hoop house.

Here I am looking to the south. You can see that with just the conduit they are pretty stable. I don’t know if I mentioned it earlier, but when I pounded in the conduit I put it at about a 30 degree angle to the piece directly across from it. That makes it a little easier to slide on. I think it will also put less stress on the lower section of pvc.

Ok. This is looking back to the west.

Here is a close up of how the bolts need to face down so the exposed bolt doesn’t contact the plastic.

If you see anything that you think or know will be a problem…PLEASE TELL ME! I will certainly appreciate it.

Also, I added the wooden boards. 2 x 6 x 12 treated pine laid vertically on the inside of the arches. The end boards are the same size but they are laid horizontal (flat on the ground). I also cut out a slot so the two pieces would fit together nicely.

Here the boys are screwing the pvc brackets to the board.

I also framed one end for the door. Just plain 2 x 4 studs. I don’t have pictures of that yet. And it snowed so I will not be working on the hoop house for a couple of days. And to top if off, my plastic was delivered today! UGH!

The next update can be found here.


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OK. I am going to chronicle my adventures in designing and building a Hoop House. What is a hoop house? Simply put it is a very economical greenhouse.

A hoop house is made by taking pvc and bending it into an arch. Once that pvc is anchored down you lay plastic sheeting over the top of it. That becomes your hoop house.

Why build a hoop house? I have several reasons why I have wanted to do this.

  1. Get an earlier start on tomatoes and peppers. We lose quite a few tomatoes in the fall if we get an early frost.
  2. I think it will make growing lettuce and other greens much easier (if I can control the heat). Our family eats a lot of salad. The more I can grow the better.
  3. I want to use the protected space inside the hoop house for small crops like lettuce, onions, garlic, etc. That way I can use the outside bigger space for larger crops like corn, potatoes, and the squashes.
  4. I am also looking forward to having a more controllable environment. No rain should get in the hoop house, so I can control exactly when and where the plants receive water.
  5. I’m always looking for another project. This fits the bill perfectly!

I’ll start off by listing some of the web sites, and or blogs that I have been visiting lately. I can’t say that any one source has been more useful to me than another. I try to look at what a lot of people are doing and come up with what seems reasonable for me and my area.

YouTube/Google videos:

This is from the Utah Extension. It’s a great overview of hoop houses.


Web Sites:

The Noble Foundation has done a lot of research on Hoop Houses. It is more geared to a large scale facility but you can downscale what they are doing.


High Tunnels is another word for Hoop House. This site even has plans and a parts list to get you going quickly.


Here is a blog that someone else did on there hoop house. It’s a little smaller than what I am planning. But the concept is the same.


There are plenty of other web sites and videos out there. I will add some more later.

The plastic is the single biggest investment in a hoop house. Here is a link to one place the sells it. I’m not saying this is the best stuff, or the cheapest. It’s just one place.


I wasn’t going to publish this until I had a better start on it. But, I would appreciate any comments from people who have actually built one of these. I didn’t mention the size. I am thinking of something like a 12-16 feet wide x 24 – 30 feet long.

02-21-2012 Update

Since the original post I have made some decisions on my hoop house. The final size is going to be 12 x 24. And that will give me about 7′ of height.

I am going to use 1′ pvc for the arches. Two 10′  sections will be connected in the middle by a 12″ piece of 1 1/4″ pvc. This 1 1/4 piece will slide right over the 1″ sections. I will secure it by drilling holes and running a nut and bolt through both pieces. I’ll take pictures of that this afternoon.

These arches will be inserted into a piece of 1/2″ emt conduit driven into the ground. The conduit is 30″ long and driven into the ground about 2′. That leaves about 6″ for the pvc arch. Yesterday I laid out the foundation and drove the conduit in. I also built up one of the arches and placed it in position.  I’ll post pictures of that when the rain/snow mix is over.

I am still contemplating either painting or using the foam pipe insulation to form a layer of separation between the plastic covering and the pvc. From what I have read there is a chemical reaction between the two plastics that will shorten the life of the plastic covering.

I think I have found the best source for the 4 yr. 6 mil uv protected film as well. I can get a 20′ x 55′ piece for $134.00 plus shipping. The supplier is greenhouse megastores. I’ll be ordering that today or tomorrow.

02-22-2012 Update

The updates have been moved to a new post…here


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