Solar Heated Greenhouse – Progress

It’s coming along – slowly…  It might even be ready for next year at this rate!!

The base is supported on rammed earth piles, sadly I had to use a concrete block on top of each one to get a good enough level, but it is up!!  The pipes are down as you can see, a large planter served as a hub, it will have another upturned on top of it, with the fans mounted in the bottom to suck down the warm air.  A pipe will then run to the roof to collect the warm air, well that is the theory anyway…  The plants seem to grow well in there despite the incomplete state, their priorities are not ours!!


The 80mph winds last night were blowing our bin about, or so I thought…  Found out it wasn’t the bin at all, but the greenhouse panels which were fighting through the trees to get to the ground, they had been stacked against the shed wall – this morning they were quite neatly stacked horizontally!  But not one pane was broken!!  Today I have excavated the heat sump for the greenhouse.  Instead of concrete block-work foundation walls which would be quick and easy to build up, I have decided to try a rammed earth approach.  I just can’t abide using concrete blocks.  However, another idea popped in whilst thinking about the foundations…  Rammed earth walls create a good thermal mass, so as I was going to use a solar heating system which blows warm air from the top of the greenhouse underground, through pipework, to warm the soil, what if, around the pipes I use rammed earth walls.  They would hold the heat much better than loose subsoil and gravel.  There is only one way to find out…  Ok so that is a lot more digging, and a lot of earth ramming.  So long as it is done for spring!