Hoop Houses promise to extend the season and make possible what is out of reach. They are not without limitations but their benefits make them a sound investment of money, time, and space. The following is what we use at Heartiness Farm aka Wilson Family Farm.
Determine your required dimensions. Material selection and quantity depends on your layout needs. Our growing area is odd shaped and not ideal in size or orientation. We are running our hoop houses East to West because we believe that orientation fits best within the growing area, allows prevailing winds to blow through the open hoop during hot days, and follows what we have already established for the growing beds. They will be 60 feet long where possible and approximately __
feet wide. The length stems from the size and layout of the gardening area. The width is a result of using 3 sections of 10 foot EMT bent for a sloped roof. This permits us to have 5
30" beds with 8
inch walkways on each side of the hoop house and 12
inch walkways between each bed.
How to Build a Hoophouse, Part 2 (Bending the Hoops)
We use 3/4 inch 10 foot EMT for the hoops and bend the 2 side EMT poles 30 degrees at 36" and the middle EMT 30 degrees at 58 ". We searched for correct bend point instructions but found nothing to help with the specific bend we are doing. Because we want the bend in the middle and some length is lost when bending we are approximating based on a 90 degree bend. We will be close but all will be the same and thus symmetrical. We are using EMT connectors to fasten the hoop pieces together. Our 60' hoop will require 16 hoops as expressed in the formula length / distance between ribs + 1 (60'/4' + 1).
How to Build a Hoophouse Part 3 (standing the hoops, attaching the ropes)
We are using rebar, pounded into the ground, for holding the pipes in place. Each rib will be 4 feet on center from each other. They are placed in a straight line by stretching a string between the fits and last rib position. The opposite side is done in the same manner after squaring the corners. In the absence of appropriate squaring devices I measure between each diagonal corner to ensure they are equal. Once all the rebar is pounded in then the pipes can be inserted over them.
How to Build a Hoophouse, Part 4 (attaching the plastic to the hoops)
How to Build a Hoophouse, Part 5 (end walls, costs, resources)