Monday, November 21, 2011

Hoop House II!

About a week or so ago, I wrote about the multi-purpose hoop house we're building to house our animals this winter and serve as a greenhouse/brooder in the spring.  Click here for Part I, and click here for the design we're following (remember, there is a link to an improved design at the bottom of that post).  Byron made progress this week, and this weekend I left the house to clean itself and went out to help him.  Here's how it looks so far:

We placed a beam the entire length of the greenhouse for added support, and because you never know when the southern skies will dump 24" of snow on you again.

Byron zip-tied fencing to the PVC on the cows' side in case they decide to get destructive.

Hopefully it will work!

This weekend we put up the structure for the front wall on the chickens' side.  The cows' side will remain open for access to a yard.

We grommetted (is that a word??) one end of the poly.

The super-strong 11 mil poly, which we ordered from here, is draped over the PVC.

We secured it with wooden lathe, screws, and muscle.  The instructions warn to pull this stuff tight and to install it on a warmer day since it will sag a bit in the cold.  Screws are nice because you can adjust wrinkles easily.  What isn't nice is a totally numb thumb after half an hour of pulling.

Cows' side.

Here's what the grommets were all about.  We zip-tied the poly a few inches back in hopes that the little varmints won't chew on it.

Chickens' side, facing the garden.  We are going to add a door and clear roofing panels to this wall to maximize sunlight.  Because more sunlight = more eggs.  At least in theory.
We hope to finish this by next week, or at least before the next cold front hits.  And if you don't hear back from me until then, Happy Thanksgiving!

I'm linking up with a couple blog hops.  Click below to visit:


  1. Your hoop house looks wonderful! Great job! It was the perfect post for me to see this am as I am researching hoop houses for growing flowers and a few veggies in our backyard! Are you using yours for growing too or for keeping chickens? thanks for linking up with the Farmgirl Friday Hop too!

  2. Hi, Deborah Jean! We're going to be using this hoop house for both: keeping chickens (and cows) in the winter, and then for starting veggies in the spring. We may also roll the poly back and plant directly into the bedding in the summer. You can really make these any size you want, and the links in my post should help with the construction aspect. Let me know if you have any other questions!

  3. How wonderful! This is such a great resource to have in the wintertime. I bet you will love it!

  4. Thanks for visiting, Megan! We hope it will work...and I promise to post any mishaps!

  5. I hope your hoop house holds up for you! It looks good. We tried the PVC type here and between the really bad spring storms with unreal wind and then we had two winters with a lot of snow, for us anyway it was a lot and something we don't usually deal with at all! They just didn't work for us. We used them to shade our vegetable garden because at over 100 plus degrees daily for the better part of summer it just burns the garden up so bad. The shade covers extend my ability to garden by months here, that we did figure out.. But the frames just couldn't take the heat, which also made the PVC get brittle and the other mentioned things. I think your board down the middle for support was very smart, we did not have that! We are in the process of redoing our frames but with metal piping this time. Its gonna be expensive ugggg but after seeing what a difference the shade covers make to the vegetable garden we feel its worth the investment for sure. This is a link to a post on my blog of what we had done. are other post on there as well. We are pricing out the metal pipes now trying to get the best buy we can on them. The shade covers themselves held up wonderful it was the frames that didn't hold up for us.

  6. Texan - thanks for the input and I checked out your post. Your hoop houses look great and I'm curious to see how your new ones hold up. We're taking a risk with the PVC but are hoping for the best!

  7. What a great idea. I love that it's tall enough to stand up in, mine are just for the garden and I have to stoop or crawl inside them... I sure hope the 11 mil poly holds up well on that open end. My ends must be closed most of the time due to strong winds, but we live in an area with large windmill farms, so I know we get alot more than most people. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

  8. Heidi - I'm a bit worried about uplift, too, but that end is facing east so we're hoping for the best. It seems like everything we do here involves some trial and error!

  9. Hi This is a great idea, Im working on somthing similar and I noticed that for the chickens you didn't used wires. Did the chickens leave the poly? im afraid that they will destroy it.