Red Bucket Farm is an urban farm on a quarter acre property in an average residential neighborhood. We are located in Wisconsin, USDA Zone 5. We focus on chickens, bees, orchard fruit, and raised garden beds for fruits and veggies. We hope to reduce our footprint on the planet by growing some of our food, reducing our use of fossil fuels, and gardening with sustainable practices. Thanks for visiting!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Greenhouse Construction

I have always loved a greenhouse. I love the way the soil smells clean and earthy, the humidity steams my skin and hair, the plants may be blooming and fragrant. I've been known to visit a greenhouse just for a mental health break.

As my interest in urban farming has grown, I've become aware that a greenhouse is more than just a luxury location for potted flowers. A greenhouse is an urban farming tool that can significantly expand the seasons in spring and fall. 

Last summer we purchased a greenhouse kit on sale for $350 at our local home supply store. It was a humble kit for a 6x8 foot greenhouse with aluminum frame and 6mm polycarbonate twin walls. There is a sliding door in one end and a small roof vent in the top to allow for air exchange.

The boxes waited in the garage until Labor Day weekend when my work crew leveled a site, built a concrete block foundation and assembled the kit on a heavy wood base. The floor is crushed gravel to allow for drainage beneath containers.

We decided to build a raised bed along one of the 8 foot wall lengths. The other half of the greenhouse is open floor, which allows flexibility in terms of container plants, shelves for seed starting, or general winter storage.

For the fall months, we planted spinach, swiss chard and lettuce in the raised bed. We moved in herbs and peppers in containers. Our greenhouse crops did nicely until Thanksgiving. After that, we tucked it away for the winter months. But spring is flirting with us, and I'll be posting more about activities in the greenhouse.

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