Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘hoop houses’

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.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4555704608768330618

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.

http://www.noble.org/ag/Horticulture/HoopHouse/Index.htm

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

http://www.hightunnels.org/ForGrowers/SitePlanning&Construction/Articles/CareyHow-toBuild.htm

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.

http://henbogle.com/homemade-pvc-hoophouse-construction/

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.

http://www.farmtek.com/farm/supplies/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10052&storeId=10001&langId=-1&division=FarmTek&productId=358875

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

 

Advertisements

Read Full Post »