After meeting a good friend for lunch today and telling her all about my latest and greatest events in my life she has insisted that I start a blog and log my journey with everyone else on the planet as a witness. What she seems so interested in was our new greenhouse and growing system that we put in.
What I have come up with was a combination of a Walipini (underground greenhouse) and an Aquaponic system. The walipini was a no brainier for us as we live out on the prairie. Wind and hail are a norm for us. All the normal greenhouses that you can buy from box stores and such are just no match for what mother nature has in store for us out here. Sure I could buy one, but a day later someone in Kansas would be happy with my new purchase! Therefore after lots of searching and research we decided that a walipini was right for us.
Our Walipini has an inner dimention of 20'x36' and is 6' deep. We also added a ramp big enough for a bobcat in case we ever needed to get something big down there. Yes, we live on acreage in case you were wondering. :)
|Post holes down the middle|
|Set the 12' 4x4 posts. 3' in the ground 9' above|
|Added a middle beam 2x6's|
|12' 2x4's going from middle to the sides|
| The outer dimensions are 24'x40' The rafters span 2' over the ground on all sides of the walipini.|
I found some used doors on craigslist for $60 and 3 used small windows for $60. Also, we added some used mulch from the city to add a nice cushy layer on the bottom before we put the top on.
For now the top on the walipini is a clear greenhouse tarp I found online at Farmtek
. Great store and very helpful if you call in to chat with them about your project.
|Added another 2x4 to the top of the tarp to hold in place|
For the sides above the ground we used the clear poly roof material for now. It works and does what we needed it to do...let in sunlight!
We put back our wood fencing around it to add a little more protection from the wind. The top middle line only is about 3' off the ground. You can't see this unless you are close to it or in a plane.
|The inside is cozy and we love it!|
From start to finish this only took us about 2 weeks to put together. All posts down the middle and sides were concreted in. We made the frames for the doors on either end. On the warmer days all windows and doors are open to allow for a draft. This last photo was taken in the AM just as the sun was coming up.
Hope you enjoy our journey as much as my friends and family have so far. It seems we are always trying and coming up with new things to try. I will post more about our Aquponics system in the next blog.