The Red Barn Community Farm is in the Lowell Neighborhood, Everett, WA. It lies in the 100-year flood plain of the Snohomish River. The soil is rich bottom soil, Puget Sound Silty Loam. It has been well drained with ditches and a drainage canal. The farm is part of a 400 acre area owned by the City of Everett. 2011 is our first year as a Community Farm.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
I've been looking for a hoophouse design that I thought would be appropriate for the Red Barn Community Farm. It shoud be relatively inexpensive but yet be substantial enough to last through our Northwest winters and be strong enough to withstand the high winds that sweep the valley. There is nothing there to stop the wind. The design here meets those needs.
This drawing shows a diagram of how to build it. The 2x4 base pieces and corner posts are needed to make the structure strong enough to resist the winds. It is 6 1/2 ft high so most people could stand in the center. It contains 168 sq ft of growing space so there is plenty of room for those semi-tropical plants like tomatoes and bell peppers that sometimes don't ripen in our cool summers. With this structure, you should have tomatoes by mid July.
You'll need to shop for materials at Lowes or Home Depot. The 3/4 in PVC cross pieces can be found at Graingers for a $2.31 each if you can't get them at the more common stores. Total cost should be about $250. The hoophouse won't pay for itself for a couple of years but it'll extend your growing season on both ends by a month each.
You can find a more complete set of plans at http://www.bae.ncsu.edu/programs/extension/publicat/postharv/green/small_greenhouse.pdf.