Good Brown Dirt, anytime! : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I've noticed in many of the posts here, that quite a few of the folks on here are transplanted from warmer to colder areas, hence snowier climes. One, transplanted from NJ to ME mentioned there was 2 1/2 feet of snow on the ground and asked where was the brown dirt? Well though I'm not that far north (yet) the solution I found is to put up a small greenhouse. I have some nice brown dirt to look at, mess with and so forth at any time of year. On a nice sunny, cold winters day I can wander out there and in relative comfort just sit and read, sort seeds, plan the spring garden and when the temperatures permit (unheated solar greenhouse here) start planting, potting etc. etc. As the glazing is translucent I can go in there and almost forget for the time being that it's still winter. A simple greenhouse is pretty simple to make and cheap too, especially if you have lots of "stuff" around the homestead. My simple greenhouse is a simple A-frame affair that initially cost me $12 in materials. Some may have everything they need and can do it cheaper. Got old storm windows around? Perhaps some odds and ends of lumber? Nails, screws etc? Well you're well on your way, just sketch up a simple plan and round things up and have at it! You won't be sorry! Go to the Contryside Friends Pictures Site and look at the photos for some ideas. Mine is titled Home, posted by Backwoods Bob. There you will see my greenhouse with and without it's covering. Also Kelly has a few shots of hers, but her's are posted in the message board section of the site.

-- Bob Johnson (, February 08, 2001


Looked at you pics, I thought the Mountianlaurel only grew up in high elevations? Ive heard storys of "Killer Honey " coming from the necter of that plant. The last KHP meeting i was at they told of early warfare using Mountianlaurel honey to kill and/or paralyze their foes. I wish i had the notes i took so i could tell ya who they were and what they really did. It was neat to hear of the differnt ways bees were used

-- MikeinKS (, February 08, 2001.

Hi, I'm the one who moved to maine from new jersey, and your idea is a good one. I have 8 large greenhouse glass panels left here by the previous owner. Guess I will do something with them!! Thanks!! cara lewis

-- cara lewis (, February 08, 2001.

Thanks Bob, your photos were really nice. You've given me some good ideas for my homemade greenhouse. I tried one last year with pvc for framing but it became brittle and cracked. I don't have too much extra money right now so your ideas will help quite a bit.

-- Barb (, February 09, 2001.

I have to replace the side coverings yearly as I don't use a UV resistant plastic. The ends last 2 years as a rule. A 10'x25' roll of 4 mil goes for $3.99 here on sale, $5.99 when not on sale. However the frame which is made of wood, 2x3s and 1x3s, has been there for 5 years now and has held up well to rot, insects and so forth. It is not treated wood either and does touch the ground. It has endured many storms, wind and otherwise. This design wouldn't be good for a heavy snowfall area, though it could be built more sturdily for such an area I'm sure. I thought of pvc myself but wondered how it would hold up to the suns uv rays, now I know. Thanks for the input.

-- Bob Johnson (, February 09, 2001.

Thanks for the additional info Bob.

-- Barb (, February 09, 2001.

Bob - one more question about your greenhouse. What do you tack down the plastic to the wood frames with? Nails, staple gun, something else? I want to make sure the plastic is secure but doesn't rip easily either. Thanks.

-- Barb (, February 14, 2001.

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