What are your thoughts on Pit/Walipini Greenhouses?


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Hello people,
My name is Bradley and I`m new here.

I wanted to know your thoughts on the so-called underground greenhouses?
I've started researching them since we've bought a house in Eastern Europe (Bulgaria) and it's got a big back yard I am planning to use for gardening.
I also wanted to be able to get fresh veg from my own garden all year 'round so the underground greenhouse is the best thing I've found so far.
We've started with the repairs on the house and tore the other structures in the garden down, so there is a lot of wood, beams, pipes and old window frames with the windows still intact.
I`m planning to upcycle as much of the said materials as possible.

Uploaded a pic of the garden (taken from the roof of the house) with all the materials I've got laying around that I will try to reuse.

Please, share your thoughts and ideas?
Cheers
Bradley
 

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Welcome to the forum Bradley! I'm in Manchester too :)

That is certainly an interesting idea! There are quite a few greenhouse fans here, although I don't have one myself. What are you planning on growing in there?
 
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Some spices, cabbage, kale, carrots, (leafy greens) tomatoes, bell peppers, chillies, cucumbers etc.
I`m thinking of making a rainwater collection installation inside it so that I don`t have to pay for irrigation.
There will also be a compost bin to make organic fertiliser.
 
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Hi there, Bradley! I couldn't have really imagined, hehehe, it's always nice to get a picture instead, just to get a better idea :) Welcome to the forum! I like greenhouses, but I have never had one. I might be getting a small one though very soon, probably next year.
 
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Well, I don`t have a picture as I have yet to start building it.
It's gonna be roughly a mixture of the pics below.
1. Buried.
2. Rainwater gathering system
3. several hanging pots for spices
4. And the growing spaces will be higher than the floor just to be above the cold air.
5. There will also be a vent on the roof to be able to improve ventilation and regulate the temperature during the summer.
6. I`ll probably make a few "shelves" to grow onions and garlic directly into the walls.

P.S The pics are taken from Google. It's just to give you an idea of what I've planned.
 

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If it was me, I'd want to put in some form of retaining wall inside - do you have any suitable materials for that? It's difficult to tell from the photo you shared in your first post.
 
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If it was me, I'd want to put in some form of retaining wall inside - do you have any suitable materials for that? It's difficult to tell from the photo you shared in your first post.
It's planned.
I`ll get old car tires (for free from the local garages) and use them to create tire logs that would be perfect for the task.
 
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That is a lot of wood pieces to recycle and the idea of underground garden is fascinating! Sounds like you will have lots to do to get this project done for gardening. It would be wonderful to have the vegetables you grow year round.
 
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It's planned.
I`ll get old car tires (for free from the local garages) and use them to create tire logs that would be perfect for the task.

That is a very good idea (y) I remember seeing an episode of Grand Designs once where they built a large retaining wall for a partially subterranean house by compacting soil in tyres - took a lot of man power but was cheap and effective.
 
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That is a very good idea (y) I remember seeing an episode of Grand Designs once where they built a large retaining wall for a partially subterranean house by compacting soil in tyres - took a lot of man power but was cheap and effective.
Look up the tire log idea. It's cheap, easy, and cost effective. Totally worth it.
 
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That is a lot of wood pieces to recycle and the idea of underground garden is fascinating! Sounds like you will have lots to do to get this project done for gardening. It would be wonderful to have the vegetables you grow year round.
Yep. There's quite a lot to do. It will happen eventually. Even though the walipini project is at halt at the moment (and probably will be for the next several months) because the whole house is undergoing reconstruction and renovation I am still looking up at how to make a water ram pump so that I can use it to pump water through a tesla water generator ->
or some other type of generator. We`ll see what fits me best and will be easiest to make with less money.
And use it to power heating lamps for the cold months during the winter.
 
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I think it's a great idea as long as you live in a place where excess moisture won't be a problem. I love the idea of being able to grow year-round despite seasonal changes. If you do build one, be sure to take photos of your process and keep us posted on how it goes.
 
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Sounds like a very good idea. My son has a 'root cellar' built into a hillside and there is no excess moisture problem- stays cool in there, winter and summer. Of course, no light for growing anything, but certainly shows that an earth womb idea is a naturally provident one. I'm in Canada, the West Coast on the Pacific. In this country they have converted some old mines in the extremely cold prairie North for growing legal medicinal cannabis and apparently it grows well under those circumstances. Of course, that is a government enterprise so they would have the cash to have extra manpower (including engineers, etc.) and technology costs covered. They have also apparently converted old schools and ice-skating rinks into growing houses, I guess taking a page from the traditional illegal "grow-ops" to figure out optimal lighting and other needs. Ah, the irony!
 
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As soon as the heat of the sun hits an enclosed space like that, you will have moisture.

The idea of growing beneath ground level is quite cool and the earth makes pretty efficient insulation. You're looking at what I would consider a "giant cold frame" and it should be wonderful.

I often thought that if I somehow ended up in a home with a swimming pool that I would convert it to a sub greenhouse!

Keep us updated please as this sounds like a really fun and interesting thread!:)
 
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Look up the tire log idea. It's cheap, easy, and cost effective. Totally worth it.

I googled Tire log and got a look at the concept but didn't see anywhere that these would be available to the public or pricing. Would it be possible to share a vendor link? Many thanks, Lori
 
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