Sonja your greenhouse is awesome! Is there anyplace that your design and pictures are posted online showing the story?
Sonja Martin Young said:
We just finished our 22x 36 greenhouse here in Homer, Alaska. Not quite as cold as you get but for longer. Probably similar frost line. We put 2 inch R tech on our cleared pad and then put Amvic blocks (that you normally fill with concrete) around the perimeter. We filled those with packed sand. We put hot water piping on the R Tech and air pipes ( for a climate battery). Then we put 18 inches of packed sand on top. We laid timbers on the Amvic and built the greenhouse on top of that. Then we put R tech 2 feet laterally around the outside to keep the frost from heaving the foundation. Oh yes it is expensive but I hope to only do it once and do it right.
Thanks for pointing me to the video. It looks great in there!
Also love your accent. Are you from Wisconsin originally?
I was thinking of ways that you could put some more passive solar design features in there, but then I realized you probably don't get much winter sun do you? That makes for a really interesting design challenge.
Your insulated fish tank looks awesome - great idea!
You probably could save some more energy through preventing evaporation from your grow beds by planting your plants in net pots through a 1" sheet of insulation laid over the top. The roots would grow down into the media from there. I did that this winter and it made a huge difference (see pic.)
Sonja, I was thinking that it might be interesting to use your greenhouse as an example on my blog, to ask readers what features they see in your greenhouse that they think are great ideas, and what improvements they can imagine.
Would you be open to that?
If you had some photos of specific components that would be helpful. I'm looking in particular for things that you think make a difference in saving energy.
Good examples would be things that:
Also anything that you think makes your system unique.
If you wanted to explain it for us in text, that would be welcome too.
Whatever effort you want to put in is fine. I really appreciate whatever time you're willing to offer us.
There's also a new group here on the forum about cold weather aquaponics if you want to participate in that discussion
Aquamaple, I too live in Michigan and would love to hear more about your greenhouse plans. I would love nothing more than to be able to do aquaponics year around here but thinking it wouldn't be real cost effective. Have you started building yet??
Hi Tammy, I live in a western Detroit suburb. Not to many aquaponics enthusiasts around here. I've been at it for about a year. Getting ready to expand my GH. Looking for flooring recommendations.
Is there a reason you want to put in a floor, rather than just leaving the dirt exposed?
Dirt gets muddy. I found that out this year. I laid some 18" tiles that I had on the ground to stay dry. Also I read somewhere that gravel will absorb heat during the day. Any kind of flooring should insulate from the ground to some extent.
That makes sense. The best surface for absorbing heat is something with high mass, such as concrete. A bit of insulation with black-tinted concrete poured on top of it would absorb a lot of heat. In summer you'd need some way of reflecting that heat though, such as a layer of sand.